I have a list of payments for approval with the BACS processing date of the next day. I also have a list of approved payments that sits alongside the financial regulations that includes regular payments for things like wages, utilities, rates etc. This list is approved at the May meeting alongside the financial regulations.
I also agree with RuralTCllr that if a specific item is named in the budget, then the approval for payment has been given. For example, the purchase of benches, planters etc that are specified will allow for them to be purchased during the financial year.