Vote on how to spend $1 million for projects in LIC, Woodside, Astoria and Sunnyside

Photo via Flickr Creative Commons/Shinya Suzuki

Participatory budgeting is back in western Queens and residents will have the opportunity to vote on how to spend $1 million in city funding to improve their community.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer will host voting sessions around the district so that constituents can vote for up to five projects that will be fully funded by the councilman’s discretionary funds. Voting begins on March 25 and for the first time, residents can also vote online.

Projects range from auditorium upgrades at two schools to kitchen renovations at Queensbridge Houses. There are a total of 18 projects to vote from and they were whittled down from hundreds by volunteers. Neighborhoods on the ballot include Long Island City, Astoria, Sunnyside and Woodside.

A shade canopy for Hunters Point South park playground, barbecue picnic tables for Rainey Park and bus countdown clocks are also among the options on the ballot.

“This is one of my favorite times of the year when we witness democracy in action,” Van Bramer said in an email. “I’m so proud of this community for coming together over the past few months to make our voices heard. This is our chance to demonstrate that we care about our community and we’re engaged! Let’s show our #QueensValues and vote.”

There will be 10 voting stations including the Woodside branch of the Queens Library, Ravenswood Houses community center, Gantry Plaza State Park and Kaufman Studios, where the voting will kick off on March 25 at 1 p.m.

The online ballot will be available on March 25 and voting will close on April 2. Anyone who lives in the district and is over the age of 14 can vote for five projects.