Vote on PB Projects December 3 - 12, 2021
As part of its 8th Participatory Budgeting (PB) Cycle, the City of Cambridge invites residents age 12 and older (including all 6th graders) to vote on projects to improve the city from December 3-12, 2021. This process is open to everyone in the Cambridge community, including non-U.S. citizens and university students.
Residents can vote online here at pb.cambridgema.gov starting December 3, stay tuned! Online voting will be text message authenticated; voters will enter their cell phone number on the voting website, a code will be sent to them via text message or email, and then they will enter that code online for one-time access to the ballot. The online ballot will be available in English, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Spanish, Portuguese, Amharic, Arabic, and Bengali.
Residents can also vote over the phone by calling the Budget Office at 617-349-4270 during regular business hours: Friday, Dec. 3, from 8:30 a.m. - 12 p.m., Monday, Dec. 6, from 8:30 a.m.– 8 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, Dec. 7- 9, from 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Friday Dec. 10, from 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Projects are eligible for funding if they:
- Benefit the public;
- Are capital projects (something bought or built);
- Are one-time expenditures that cost $1 million or less;
- Are implemented by the City of Cambridge on City property (streets, sidewalks, parks, libraries, schools, youth centers, senior centers, municipal buildings, etc.)
Examples of past winning projects include:
- Musical instruments for CRLS
- Universal swing sets in parks
- Laundry access in public schools
- Pedestrian-controlled crosswalk lights
- Bilingual books for kids
- Extending outdoor public Wi-Fi
What is PB all about?
Participatory Budgeting is a democratic process through which community members directly decide how to spend part of a public budget. The City hopes that PB will help directly involve residents in the budgeting and City-building process, foster civic engagement and community spirit, and help ensure that the City’s Capital Plan reflects the priorities of Cambridge residents.
The eighth Participatory Budgeting (PB8) cycle in Cambridge will run from June through December 2021. This time, the City will set aside $1,000,000 of the FY23 Budget for one-time capital projects to improve the community. Winning projects from past PB cycles include laundry access in schools, solar panels for the Main Library roof, bike repair stations, a freezer van for prepared food rescue, street trees, water bottle fill stations, bilingual books for children learning English, and many others.
After community members brainstorm project ideas in June and July, volunteer Budget Delegates will research and develop those ideas into formal project proposals from August through November. Proposals that are vetted by City staff and approved by the City Manager will appear on a December PB8 ballot in which all Cambridge residents age 12 and older will be able to participate. Winning projects will be included in the FY23 Capital Budget for adoption.
Looking Back at PB7
Check back and stay up to date about the upcoming 8th PB Cycle!
Check out the StoryMap of past winning PB projects
Click here to see our StoryMap that displays all of the winning projects from PB1, PB2, PB3, PB4, PB5, and PB6.
You can learn more about winning projects from past cycles by exploring our PB Cycles tab.
Some Images provided by the Participatory Budgeting Project.