Innovation Exchange

North Ayrshire CPP: Community Participation in Parks & Greenspace Budget

Introduction

Key activities

Benefits and impacts

Learning

NACPP were looking to extend the scope of the PB model to influence mainstream budgets.

Theme: Community Planning and Empowerment

Council approved the allocation of a proportion of the grounds maintenance budget for a participatory budgeting approach to take effect from 1 April 2019. This will allow communities the opportunity to influence how the grounds maintenance budget is used and supports a key outcome of PB to deliver services more efficiently, as service delivery programmes will be based on a clearer understanding of resident's needs and priorities.

 

They undertook a range of engagement mechanisms – discussions with community leaders, public events, surveys etc. A pilot was held with dedicated funding which has potential to be scaled up later on.  It was important to be clear what was within/outwith scope (i.e. minimum requirements for grass cutting for road safety etc) Mapping out the current spend for parks and greenspaces including grass cutting, labour, plant setting etc.

What helped to improve community participation?

 

Pre-engagement and consultation with communities to find out where they want to spend the money which was informed by evidence (e.g. current breakdown of costs). If it is agreed that the council will reduce a particular service, for example grass cutting, then a further question is if  someone with the skills in the community can step up and do the job?

 

Barriers to improving community participation?

The challenge is to collect everyone’s opinions, targeting specific geographic areas.

It is part of a step-change to a council that is empowering communities to do more for themselves.

Case study added to site: December 2018

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