skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 227946 Find in a Library
Title: Accounting Practices for Drug Courts: Suggestions for Developing a Funding Formula and Maintaining Program Expenditures
Journal: Drug Court Review  Volume:6  Issue:2  Dated:2009  Pages:83-107
Author(s): Cary Heck Ph.D.; Caskey Russell Ph.D.
Date Published: 2009
Page Count: 25
Type: Guideline
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article provides recommendations for good accounting practices for problem-solving courts, such as drug courts, and offers suggestions to State administrators and legislators regarding viable ways of establishing and maintaining problem-solving courts.
Abstract: The five principles presented in this article are designed to provide both accountability and transparency for local programs that operate with State funding. The first principle states that funds should be disbursed based upon a cost-reimbursement model in contrast to grant funding. The cost-reimbursement model focuses on actual program expenditures, so programs are only given funds to the level of their documented expenses. Whereas grants are commonly used for new programs, the cost-reimbursement model is commonly used with ongoing programs that have relatively stable budget categories and that require functional oversight at the State level. The second principle states that funds should be allocated, in part, based upon the number of clients served. Although income and expenses vary from location to location, basing funding on the number of clients provides greater incentive for all programs to streamline expenses and increase productivity. The third principle states that annual accounting reviews should be conducted, which provides evidence to the State that the program is being operated in a fiscally responsible manner. The fourth principle advocates zero-balance budgeting, which means that program balance sheets should be “zeroed out” at the end of each fiscal year. Funds should be distributed to programs based on actual expenses. The fifth principle states that training is essential. Court program personnel should be properly trained in maintaining accurate accounting ledgers, including receipts and invoices. It is the responsibility of the State administrator to ensure that new rules and policies are explained, understood, and followed by all program staff. 1 table, 1 figure, and 13 references
Main Term(s): Drug Courts
Index Term(s): Accounting methods; Financial management; Funding guidelines; State court funding; State government
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.