Aug. 11, 2016 By Michael Florio
Residents will once again have a say on how $1 million of city funds should be spent in Astoria.
Councilman Costa Constantinides is bringing back participatory budgeting, a process that provides residents with the opportunity to vote on how $1 million of capital funds should be spent, for the third year.
Residents will be able to put forward their ideas on how the money should be deployed at four upcoming meetings.
The neighborhood assemblies will be held on:
September 7th – Cretans Association, 32-33 31st Street
September 14th – Lexington School for the Deaf, 25-26 75th Street
September 21st – Astoria Houses Community Center, 4-05 Astoria Boulevard September 28th –
Bohemian Hall, 29-19 24th Avenue
Each meeting will start at 7 pm.
After residents submit their proposals, volunteers will break into groups to determine whether a suggestion is plausible and if so at what cost.
The program has been expanded to allow any resident in Constantinides’ district who is 14-years and over to cast a vote next spring.
“This community-driven program provides an extraordinary opportunity for all our residents to have a voice and to engage with our city budget cycle in a meaningful way,” Constantinides said.
“The enthusiasm we’ve seen from voters is what has made Participatory Budgeting a success in previous cycles.”
Winning projects from the last participatory budget vote included new and upgraded water fountains at Astoria Park, new gaming tables at Astoria Park, and countdown clocks at bus stops that let residents know when the next bus is arriving.