The Council of the City of New York
Office of Council Member Costa Constantinides
(718) 274-4500

For Immediate Release
August 10, 2017
Contact: Shachar Sharon

Constantinides Lets Residents Decide How to Spend $1 Million on Public Projects
Sets Dates for Neighborhood Assemblies

Astoria, N.Y. – New York City Council Member Costa Constantinides has once again set aside capital funding for the 2017-2018 cycle of Participatory Budgeting. District residents ages 14-and-over will soon be able to decide how to invest $1 million on capital projects within the district.

Next month, community members can attend neighborhood assemblies to learn more and make capital project suggestions.

Neighborhood Assembly dates/locations:
September 14th at 6pm, Queensview Community Room #2, 33-64 21st St (Side Entrance)
September 18th at 7pm, Cretans Association, 32-33 31st Street
September 20th at 7pm, Astoria Houses Community Center, 4-05 Astoria Boulevard
September 27th at 6pm, Bohemian Hall, 29-19 24th Avenue

Constantinides said, “Every year I look forward to hearing from residents about projects in which they would like to invest. Participatory Budgeting is a volunteer-driven program that allows New Yorkers to have a voice, engage hands-on with our city budget cycle, and get to know how our agencies work. The enthusiasm we’ve seen from voters is what has made Participatory Budgeting a success in previous cycles. I am proud to continue to provide the opportunity for civic engagement in our neighborhood.”

Participatory Budgeting provides an opportunity for residents to be involved in the city budget cycle. Constantinides committed to allocate $1 million of his discretionary capital budget for residents to decide how to invest as part of Participatory Budgeting. Residents have the opportunity to attend neighborhood assemblies and idea collection sessions this call to propose their suggestions for capital projects. Volunteers will then break into groups and transform the list of ideas into a ballot of fully-formed project proposals with details and costs. Voting will be held this spring both online and at sites across the district and the winning projects will receive funding in the FY 2018 city budget.

During the previous cycle, a record-breaking 3,600 votes were cast in District 22 alone. Winning projects included new tree plantings across the district, bus countdown clocks, upgrades at both public libraries in District 22, and upgrades to the STEM Lab at The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria. City agencies are currently scoping these projects before the design and construction stages begin.

Council Member Costa Constantinides represents the New York City Council’s 22nd District, which includes his native Astoria along with parts of Woodside, East Elmhurst, and Jackson Heights. He serves as the chair the City Council’s Environmental Protection Committee and sits on six additional standing committees: Civil Service & Labor, Contracts, Cultural Affairs, Oversight & Investigations, Sanitation, and Transportation. For more information, visit council.nyc.gov/costa.

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