District 7 Participatory Budgeting Returns After Hiatus

Nearly $1 million is available for projects that will increase quality of life for District Seven residents.

A Department of Public Works crew installs a sidewalk garden on Capitol Avenue. Alex Mullaney/Ingleside Light
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Bold and innovative ideas are wanted for District Seven Participatory Budgeting.

The program is designed to foster civic participation by empowering residents to propose, vet and then vote to allocate tax dollars toward a range of projects from security cameras to public art installations.

This year, $687,772 is earmarked for general projects and $250,000 for Vision Zero traffic safety projects. Project budgets have been doubled to $50,000 each.

“I am committed to building strong communities and increasing civic participation through this long-standing initiative,” District Seven Supervisor Myrna Melgar said in an announcement. “We appreciate how engaged and invested District Seven residents have been in improving our neighborhoods and increasing the quality of life for all who live and visit our district.”

Proposals that prioritize community resilience, public safety, disaster preparedness, community recovery and Vision Zero traffic safety projects will take precedent.

“Our goal is to get as many different project ideas as possible, so be creative and tell us what your concerns, priorities and ideas are,” Melgar said. “We hope to fund projects across different neighborhoods to ensure funding is distributed fairly.”

The deadline to submit a proposal is April 15, 2022. After that date, a committee of District Seven leaders appointed by Melgar will review all proposals, as will city staff, for eligibility and feasibility.

A two-week voting period will open on June 13. All District Seven residents age 16 or older are eligible to vote. Winning proposals will be announced by July 1.

“Authors of selected proposals will be connected with their department project manager to work with moving forward,” Melgar said.

Participatory Budgeting was brought to San Francisco by then-District Three Supervisor David Chiu in 2012 and picked up in 2013 by District Seven Supervisor Norman Yee, whose office offered the program for eight years and funded over 120 projects.

For the first time since 2013, there was no District Seven Participatory Budgeting in 2021. Citing COVID-19, the program was replaced by a one-time Community Grants program.

A remote informational meeting where applicants can ask questions will be held on March 23 at 6 p.m.

For more information visit the District Seven Participatory Budget website or contact Legislative Aide Megan Imperial at megan.imperial@sfgov.org or (415) 554-6517.

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