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Exclusive: Residents Have 27 Choices on How to Spend $1 Million, Voting Begins April 11

participatory budgeting meeting last fall

participatory budgeting meeting last fall

March 23, 2015 By Christian Murray

Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City residents will get to vote next month on how $1 million in city funds should be spent.

Residents will be able to choose up to 3 projects from a list of 27 proposals that they believe are worth funding. The project that receives the most votes following the election will be funded—followed by other popular items- until the $1 million is exhausted.

The proposals (see sample ballot for full list below) include funding a bike lane network in Long Island City; adding trees between 49th and 69th Streets in Woodside; renovating playgrounds and parks; upgrading school equipment; beefing up library security; as well as funding a pedestrian safety project in Dutch Kills.

The vote, which is scheduled to take place between April 11 and 19, is part of what’s known as the participatory budgeting process. The program, introduced to the 26th City Council district for the first time this year, allows all residents 16 years and older to determine those projects they want funded.

Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said that he was not surprised by the items that are being put up for a vote, since they involve improving schools, parks, libraries and traffic safety.

“Good neighborhoods are ones that have good schools, well cared for parks, well funded libraries and good clean safe streets,” Van Bramer said. “That is what people care about the most and these are the items we see.”

Nine meetings were held throughout Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City last fall, and hundreds of attendees put forward an array of ideas. These ideas were whittled down by about 140 budget delegates to 27 in concert with Van Bramer and various city agencies.

“I think the process has been successful so far,” Van Bramer said, who is urging people to go out and vote.  There are 10 locations scattered throughout the district where residents will be able to cast their ballots (see list below).

“A lot of people have got more involved in the community in a meaningful way as a result of the process,” Van Bramer said. “It has encouraged people to come out and present their ideas.”

The 27 items will be presented to the community early next month, where residents will be able to take a closer look at what they involve.

A meeting is scheduled for April 6, from 7 pm to 9pm, at the Sunnyside Community Service Center [43-31 39th Street], where all the proposals will be discussed and debated on their merits.


Final Ballot by sunnysidepost

voting locations

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Click for Comments 

Funding to get MAC’s? We should be teaching children on industry standards at a young age. Not to mention the range of software and free programing available for PC keeping costs lower to update and for parents at home. NOPE not worth funding.

The 120 computers for $100,000. Great we need to invest in our children at an affordable level that makes sense for their futures.

The Senior van is a good investment also. The quality of life of our seniors is important. Mobility to and from doctors, events, activities, grocery stores is HUGE.

District 26 is a tiny district in a relatively affluent community. If the project was for queens blvd maybe or Roosevelt. Knowing what time the bus is coming would help with safety issues. BUT why there?


Good Point. While we have 4 or more parking meter enforcement persons on the Queens Blvd. and Greenpoint Ave commercial districts, we have very little enforcement of moving violations that make for unsafe conditions. The Mobil station on the corner of Hunterspoint and Greenpoint avenues is extremely unsafe as motorists speed through to avoid the intersection. I am sure a pedestrian will be seriously injured in the near future. On concern is that children living on 37th and 38th streets often walk down to the station’s convenience store for ice cream and slushies during the summer.
A revenue producing opportunity that improves safety is a win-win situation

John Z

50,000 to install a button? Where do they come up with these numbers?? I can do that on the weekend.

And are these projects going to be like the park on greenpoint and 42nd which still hasn’t opened from the slowest renovation project I’ve ever seen….


The $50,000 is not just for the button which is $62 but to break the brick facing, do the electrical wiring (licensed), replace the doors and connect to a power source either inside or out.

There is a less expensive way of doing it. Just replace the doors. Get ball bearing doors instead of friction with low threshold handles instead of tall height pulls. It isn’t as fancy, and but it will be accessible to wheelchair levels and children with out staff help.


how about paying police to write tickets everyday? when traffic backs up on the lie access road 10-20 30 cars a day go up the wrong way on 39th st and 39th place to 50th ave……there is a lot of money to be made if the police can act quickly and daily usually around 10 am and 2-3 pm……they fly up the road in the wrong direction……

they put a barrier at 39th next to the old holiday inn… but they back up anyway….


The job of the Police is to protect people NOT write tickets. Safety issues should be addressed but at the hours of 2-3 the police start paroling school zones, bus stops and subways to ensure the safety of and from the minors of NYC. Rather have that than traffic tickets. Or to deal with backed up traffic. This is NY DEAL WITH IT! or pick a different time to drive.


im hoping for a head on collision that will motive them to stop this…especially if a child is hit……


Who is doing the job? Bosses of the Unions themselves? Give me $1000 and I’ll install the cameras. And also why are the “houses” security cameras on the ballot? Why is their security our problem, they should be a district of their own and not tap into our funds like this. Hmm let’s see, cameras for people who barely pay for the place they live and right in the middle of the prime neighborhood with total disregard to others, vs improving playgrounds, planting trees, and expanding libraries.. I’ll take the latter.

Make sure everyone votes for these, and while voting let’s cross out the prices because it doesn’t cost half million to put some mats on a playground.


How about spending it fighting DeBlasio’s Sunnyside Yards proposal? The neighborhood will be ruined anyway if that isn’t stopped.


How can I be the company to do this work? 70,000 for 70 laptops? Holy Sh!T!!!!Cameras? With 70,000 I will give Aviation 100 laptops and install the cameras for bryant hs.


How about fixing skillman park making activities for kids in the Sunnyside area. Sunnyside library was just fixed how isn’t there more stuff for sunnysiders


What does his sexual orientation have to do with anything? You can disagree with his record, that’s fine, but there’s no need for personal attacks.


Are those prices what they expect each project to cost? If so, that’s beyond absurd. 48,000 to install four security cameras at a high school? 200,000 to just plan some trees. 500,000 to install two security cameras at a parking lot, what?


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