Sutton launches its first participatory budgeting
The Town of Sutton has earmarked a total $50,000 of its investment budget for one or more projects proposed by citizens, chosen by citizens and to be realized by the Town in 2024. Information sessions and workshops will be held to help citizens generate, propose and improve their ideas.
A participatory budgeting is a democratic process that enables the population to decide how to use part of the municipal budget. It gives the population the chance to propose a project and, importantly, to vote for their preferred project.
The Town Council mandated the Quality of Life Consultative Committee to draft this first Participatory Budgeting game rules. To do so members of the Committee attended specialized training, reviewed the process in many other municipalities and have the support of the Centre d’écologie urbaine de Montréal to ensure best practice is followed. “The Council is delighted with the work of the committee. I look forward to seeing citizens of all ages propose ideas followed by the realization of the projects chosen by the population by vote,” said the Mayor of Sutton, Robert Benoît.
According to the established game rules, projects must be sustainable and last for several years. Generally speaking, projects must be located on public property or land owned by the Town. For example, citizens can propose the purchase of equipment or assets, landscaping or the purchase of sustainable vegetation such as trees. No matter their age, any citizen of Sutton can propose a project and any citizen of Sutton aged 10 or over will be able to vote for their favourite projects from a final list.
The timeline set by the committee includes the following major steps:
- Project submission by citizens: June 29, 2023, at noon
- Analysis of projects for feasibility and possible improvement: from July to September 2023
- Voting by citizens: from October 10 to 22, 2023
- Realization of one or more projects by the Town: 2024
Anyone who wishes to know more and especially everyone who may be interested in proposing a project is strongly suggested to attend one of the two bilingual information sessions:
- Virtual information meeting via Zoom to be held on Thursday, April 27, 2023, at 7 p.m. A sign up is obligatory by sending an e-mail to [email protected].
- In-person information meeting to be held on Sunday, April 30, 2023, at 10 a.m., in the council room of Sutton Town Hall. The meeting will be recorded and broadcast live on the Town’s YouTube channel.
By introducing this first participatory budgeting the Town hopes to stimulate public participation and take full advantage of the creativity of citizens of all ages in proposing projects that will improve some aspect of life in the community.
Check out the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) in the tabs on the Participatory Budgeting page of the Dream Sutton website.
All relevant documents (FAQs, steps in the process, eligibility of projects and submission process, etc.) will be available on paper upon request at the reception desk of the Town Hall and at the Tourist Information Office.
The information will also be available online at all times on the Dream Sutton website.