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Budgets are accounting ledgers that list the expected revenues and expenditures of an economic agent for a given period in time. Agents can be individuals, households, or businesses; or federal, state, or local governments. Budgets are reflective of society’s preferences regarding the allocation of revenues among competing expenditure targets, and therefore reflect society’s priorities, and redistribute income in the economy through taxing and spending. Broader social participation in the budgetary process makes the prioritization more democratic, representative, and effective. Budgetary practices, especially at the macro level, have limited direct participation to several well-organized interest groups, and budgetary outcomes are often the result of these groups’ political power. They do not, therefore, necessarily reflect the needs and priorities of a large, voiceless, and socially excluded segment ...

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