When Cycle 2 voting for the Vallejo Participatory Budget Initiative begins on September 27, it will be a significant milestone for an effort that many naysayers predicted was doomed to fail.
But fail it hasn't, although there were moments after Cycle 1's final vote when communication regarding the status of approved projects stalled. Some residents, in the absence of status reports, wondered if their votes had fallen into a black hole. What they would eventually discover was that the post-voting timeline in that initial year was hampered by the many 'first-time' tasks that had to be accomplished - all with a very skeletal staff. For instance, contracts between project awardees and the city of Vallejo had to be created before any funding could be distributed.
It's obvious that PB-Vallejo Cycle 2 piggybacks on key learnings from Cycle 1. With a full time three-person staff dedicated solely to the implementation of PB-Vallejo Cycle 2, communication about all parts of the process has become more timely. Case in point: The August issue of the Participatory Budgeting Vallejo Newsletter is chock full of helpful information. There's a informative flow chart that illustrates the vetting process that each completed proposal is subjected to in order to become eligible for the PB ballot that is then submitted to Vallejo voters. The newsletter also includes an interesting Q/A section with Vallejo employees who are charged with implementing Cycle 1 awarded projects, such as Potholes and Street Repairs, which garnered $550,000 of Measure B funds.
The PB Vallejo website contains a page on each Cycle 1 approved project. It also shows the dates and locations of Cycle 2 voting sites. The action starts on September 27 and continues through October 6 with all Vallejo residents 16 years of age and older eligible to vote.
Save this date!: On September 10, the PB Cycle-2 ballot will be posted at the PB Vallejo website.