Saturday, 20 March 2010

Participatory budgeting

Our local council has set aside £500,000 from the budget for next year and is inviting residents to vote on how they should spend it. Having said that, there doesn't seem to be much of a check on where the votes are coming from, so maybe the results will be swayed by hordes of enthusiastic outsiders.

Anyway, I managed to get my contribution in before the deadline on Monday.

The options are:

  • Extra grit boxes and a small gritter with mini snowplough for clearing entrances to schools, day centres etc - £100,000 (on top of the annual winter service budget of £110,000)
  • Traffic calming measures - £100,000 (in addition to £200,000 already allocated)
  • Trees - £100,000 for planting projects, e.g. avenues of trees on main roads and new orchards in local parks (on top of the 2,000 trees already scheduled for planting in the year ahead)
  • Sustainable street lighting - £250,000 (additional to the planned budget of around £200,000)
  • Improved disabled access to council buildings - £100,000 (on top of £83,000 already in the budget)
  • Heritage projects - an extra £100,000 for arts and heritage projects across the borough (in addition to £500,000 already allocated)
  • Town centre improvements - £250,000 to upgrade paving and street furniture in Windsor, Maidenhead and Ascot
  • Cycling - £100,000 to improve cycling facilities across the borough, including links to schools, workplaces and town centres and work with schools to encourage children to cycle (on top of £75,000 already in the budget)

The details are: here. Although I have my preferences, I'm pretty much in favour of all of them, so happy to sit back and see what happens.


townmouse said...

Hmm. We had a similar exercise up here but it was 'how would you cut 500,000 out of the council budget'?

Anonymous said...

Participatory Budgeting has a track record (in Brazil) of making serious inroads at tackling poverty and inequality. is a new campaign to help community groups make the case for much more PB ibn Britain.