Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Issues Guidance to Agency; tells agency how to do strategic plan and budget request.  Overall budget numbers are set.

Agency strategic plan development or update.   Strategic plan sets multi-year framework for broad agency programs.

Operating components develop/ submit budget request to agency.  Actual programs and expenditures start to be planned. 

Agency develops strategy on how to deal with OMB.  Agency has to decide what will sell and its ability to close the deal.

Agency sends budget request to OMB.  Agency decisions are documented and price tags attached.

OMB recommendations and Presidential decisions to agency.  "This is what we can afford," states OMB.

Agency works the system; may appeal decisions if they are not to the agency's liking.  "This is what the President really wants," states the agency.

The President's Budget request or Congressional submission is sent to Congress.  The Executive Branch takes a stand, and asks for money

House and Senate hold hearings on President's request.  Congress asks for additional information; agency prepares it.  Congressional appropriators attempt to figure out what is behind President's numbers and words.

Questions from members and staff, agency responses establish a record.

House and Senate sub- and full committees discuss and act on the request, incorporating their views on what is worth funding.   Agency works the system, attempting to influence outcomes

House and Senate debate and vote in floor action.  Votes -- Congress Takes Final Action

Continuing Resolution, or stop-gap spending measure, used if time runs out.  Otherwise, shutdown.

House and Senate meet to negotiate their differences.

Congress finally makes up its mind, and passes bill.  President vetoes or signs bill.  Appropriations Act is now law.  All negotiations are over at the Presidential level, but operating levels still have room to negotiate.