Courtesy Van Bramer’s office
Participatory Budgeting returns to City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer’s district after a record-breaking 7,100 people voted last year.
By Bill Parry

City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) was scheduled to kick off the fifth year of Participatory Budgeting Thursday with the first of six neighborhood assemblies to be held in his district through Oct. 11.

These events give constituents a chance to propose ideas and vote on how at least $1 million dollars from the City Council budget is spent in the community. Last year, 7,100 people voted in person and online and Van Bramer allocated $2,579,000, which went toward capital projects in each community in the district.

“I am excited to kick off a new round of Participatory Budgeting. Last year we saw a record number of people from the community get involved in the Participatory Budgeting process and make their voices heard,” said Van Bramer. “For this fifth round, I hope to build on that enthusiasm and get even more people to share their ideas, serve as budget delegates, and vote for projects that will improve our community. I am proud once again to commit at lease $1,000,000 for the top projects selected by residents next year. I encourage everyone to come out to our community assemblies and help get the Participatory Budgeting process started.”

This year, each neighborhood assembly will have a specific theme, with assemblies focusing on education, housing, parks, transportation, and libraries. Residents will learn about the Participator Budgeting process and are encouraged to propose capital projects to be included in the official ballot to be voted on next year.

Meanwhile, City Councilman Costa Constantinides (D-Astoria) announced he will co-host a town hall meeting with Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D-Manhattan) at PS 171 in Long Island City, Thursday, Oct. 4 at 6:30 p.m. The lawmakers plan to discuss recent budget victories for the district, initiatives in the year ahead, and the historic legislation they are moving through the City Council.

“We successfully fought to bring more city funding and services to District 22,” Constantinides said. “I look forward to discussing not only what we’re doing for our neighborhoods, but everything we’re doing to make New York resilient, greener, and a fair place for all its residents.”

Constantinides serves as chairman of the Committee on Environmental Protection.

“The Astoria town hall will be a great opportunity to listen to neighbors and learn, first-hand, about their concerns. I am really looking forward to it,” Johnson said. “The town hall is also the ideal environment to share with the community the good news that came out of this year’s budget.”

PS 171 is located at 14-14 29th Ave.

Those hoping to attend are asked to email queenstownhall@council.nyc.gov or call (212) 482-4120. Anyone in need of assistance or accommodation can email mcorbett@council.nyc.gov or call (718) 274-4500.

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparry@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4538.

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