What Is PB?
Participatory Budgeting is a democratic process in which community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget. It is a yearlong process that depends from start to finish on the participation of you and your neighbors. The first step each year is a series of “neighborhood assemblies” where residents come together to brainstorm and share ideas for needed projects. After ideas are presented, volunteers research each idea, including costs and specifics of every proposed project.
Details of the suggested projects are reviewed, finalized, and presented at the Participatory Budgeting Expo in the weeks before the vote. Finally, residents from across the district come out to vote for their favorite projects, and together we collectively decide which of the proposed projects will get funded.
Council Member Brad Lander’s District is one of the only ones that includes both expense projects ($50,000) in addition to capital projects ($1.5 million).
How Can I Get Involved?
There are many ways to help out in the PB process. You can:
- attend a neighborhood assembly to learn about ideas being suggested
- suggest an idea in person OR online
- become a budget delegate and research proposed ideas
- become a committee facilitator
- spread the word for the vote
- vote on the projects you think would best service the community