Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced today a new position in the Office of Management and Budget that would be focused on providing technical support to any alderman who wants to utilize participatory budgeting in local menu fund spending decisions. The position of Manager of Participatory Budgeting will build upon the work pioneered by Alderman Joe Moore of the 49th Ward to do participatory budgeting on a community level and further establish this innovative process so that every alderman can access this creative budgetary tool.
“Alderman Moore’s participatory budgeting process has proven to be a success and is now a national model for engaging citizens in the budgeting and capital planning process,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I am pleased that we can take his model and make it a permanent part of city government so that other aldermen who choose to implement this program have a resource at their disposal."
“I am proud Mayor Emanuel has formed the position of Manager of Participatory Budgeting, this move will only further the hard work by and on behalf of our residents in the 49th Ward and communities across Chicago,” said Alderman Joe Moore. “Participatory budgeting will allow residents the opportunity to be more than observers of their local government, but active participants in governing. Empowering people to make real decisions openly and transparently is the first step toward strong communities and effective local governance.”
This newly created position in the Office of Budget and Management will work in conjunction with all aldermen who wish to implement participatory budgeting with the residents of their respective ward. Several aldermen have expressed interest in implementing participatory budgeting in their communities, and this effort will facilitate that.
Participatory Budgeting is the effort to facilitate management of public funds through the engagement of residents in their communities. It is a democratic process in which community members have the direct ability to decide how to spend part of a government budget, through a series of meetings and ultimately a final binding vote.
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