The 2019 Participatory Budgeting (PB) votes have been counted and projects approved.
The big winner was a downtown trolley, which will receive $18,000 from each of the five districts for a total of $90,000. Originally, citywide projects were not supposed to be allowed, but it was decided that if a citywide project garnered enough votes in each of the five districts then it could be funded. So if the downtown trolley had failed in only one district it would not have been funded at all. But it finished first or second in four districts, and in District 2 it finished third of five projects.
In Participatory Budgeting, each City Council district is awarded $100,000 to divide up among projects that are developed by a committee of citizens from that district. Then people who live in the district over the age of 14 are invited to vote on which of the projects to fund. This year, being able to cast a vote online and by phone greatly increased the participation.
Even with the increased participation, the Steelman Park upgrade in District 1 was funded with a total of 196 votes. City Council districts have a population of about 60,000, and people don’t have to be registered, have a driver’s license or have lived in the district for any length of time to vote.
The projects that will be funded are:
Glenwood Library Charging Station – $4,500
Hampton Park Playground Improvements and Master Plan – $31,000
Old Peck Park Bicycle Racks and Master Plan – $12,000
Greentree Park Upgrades and Master Plan – $22,000
Steelman Park Upgrade – $12,500
Career Technical Education Youth Training Program – $15,000
Chavis Library Bus Shelter – $6,000
Composting Education and Community Farmers Market Pilot Program – $25,000
Kings Forest Park Upgrades and Master Plan – $36,000
Lake Daniel Park Upgrades – $10,000
Bog Garden Boardwalk Upgrade Design – $50,000
Fisher Park Signs and Master Plan – $22,000
Sunset Hills Park Tree Safety – $8,000
Sunset Hill Park and Market Street Crosswalk – $21,500
Chapman Street and Sylvan Road Crosswalk – $15,000
Lindley Pool Locker Room Upgrades – $37,500
Random Woods Park Basketball Goal Upgrades and Story Walk – $8,000
Griffin Community Park Upgrades – $40,000
Hester Park Art Mural – $30,000