2015-04-22 / Front Page

Budgeting Week a Sucess


Councilman Paul A. Vallone grabbed a “selfie” among voters at Bayside High School, who voiced their wishes for how to spend $1 million in participatory budgeting. Councilman Paul A. Vallone grabbed a “selfie” among voters at Bayside High School, who voiced their wishes for how to spend $1 million in participatory budgeting. Councilman Paul A. Vallone announced the first cycle of participatory budgeting (PB) was a huge success. He thanked his hardworking staff and volunteers for giving their time and dedication toward PB. Vallone especially thanked Vito Tautonico in his office for spearheading his office’s participatory budget efforts and putting everything together. Stay tuned to find out this year’s winning projects. Councilman Paul A. Vallone invited everyone in his district to participate in their Participatory Budgeting vote, which took place April 11-19 in locations throughout District 19. Through Participatory Budgeting, the community had a direct influence on how at least $1 million will be spent on improvements to parks, schools, libraries, streets and more. The community responded and their voices will be heard after voting on which projects should win funding this year. At the beginning of the project, Vallone’s office took suggestions from each of the communities within District 19 through several neighborhood assemblies. After gathering all of the project ideas, his office coordinated with community volunteers, who served as Budget Delegates, to create a ballot of projects that would best serve the community’s needs. These Budget Delegates met several times throughout the winter to narrow down the project ideas through field research, discussions, and consultation with city agencies. Over 100 project ideas were analyzed for feasibility and practicality with help from city agencies, and the following 10 projects ultimately were placed on the final ballot for voting:

1- Bayside High School Music Studio, $400,000

2- PS 169 Auditorium Upgrade $400,000

3- PS 159 Technology Upgrade $90,000

4- Douglaston Library Meeting Room Upgrade $216,000

5- Three NYPD Security Cameras $105,000

6- Pathway Lighting in Little Bay Park, $375,000

7- Basketball Court Renovations $300,000

8- Little Bay Park Roller Rink Resurfacing $400,000

9- Officers’ Club Portico Renovation, $300,000

10- Real Time Passenger Countdown Clocks, $160,000

Vallone’s staff had gone throughout the district to different senior centers, libraries, schools and other general gatherings to distribute ballots from April 11-19.

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