From engaging in the City Budget process in previous years, we have learned that the budget process is broken. The City does not provide us any information that we need to provide informed input. The input we provide is not used by the decision makers. In fact, most of the decisions are already made by the time by the time the City engages the public. The process is broken and needs to changed.
One solution that we have seen in other cities (New York, Chicago, and Vallejo, CA) is Participatory Budgeting (PB). PB is were a portion of the city’s budget is available for the public to decide how it is spent. Residents brainstorm ideas, work with city government on the feasibility and budget of the projects, and vote on the projects they want. The projects with the most votes are implemented.
PB NOLA is working to improve our budget process and bring Participatory Budgeting to New Orleans. So please join us to give power to the people to decide how our tax dollars are spent!
PB NOLA is hosting a Teach-In for this coming Tuesday, August 6 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at NPN’s office, 3321 Tulane Avenue. This upcoming Teach-In will be divided into two parts: education around the city’s current budgeting process and a strategy session around unified campaign messaging and the Mayor’s upcoming community budget meetings. Here is a flyer for the event.
For those of you who were unable to attend please contact Nick Kindel at firstname.lastname@example.org for the notes of the July 30 meeting. We had a great presentation from Joey Lake (of PB Vallejo) about how Participatory Budgeting works. Additional resources about participatory budgeting & PB NOLA can be found here.
For friends and neighbors who wish sign-up for the PB NOLA contact list to stay informed of future events and actions, please direct them here or contact NPN at (504) 940-2207.
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