Town Hall Participatory Budget Meetings


Town Hall Participatory Budget Meetings
By Kimberly Blake

Brooklyn College Town Hall meetings took place on Tuesday, March 6th and Wednesday, March 7th in the Gold Room of the Student Center to develop proposals into functional projects for student organizations that are feasible and both financially and technically possible. The proposals will be placed on the ballot for students to vote on April 23rd
during the Student Government elections.
On Campus Magazine covered the March 7th meeting. Moraima Cunningham from Student Affairs, Professor Mike Menzer from the Philosophy department and Student Government Presidents ran the Town Hall meeting. There were three tables and each of groups came up with three suggestions for how Student Government can spend 10% of their budget. Some suggestions were to provide easels to post posters of events, put benches on the Quad, to open the stairs in Ingersol Hall and an air compressor for air for bike tires and tool kits. Other ideas are for parking spots, and a cell phone charging station. These funds traditionally were utilized by the student clubs. Non-club members were not heard and addressed fully in the past, whereas now they were. The entire idea of Participatory Budgeting originated in Brazil. New York City is only the second city to ever attempt it and Brooklyn College will be the first college or university to ever attempt it as well. It is working with a member of the team that helped implement it in Chicago, IL. (participatorybudget.org). The goal of the Participatory Budget organization is to increase transparency, make government more efficient and get students more involved.

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