106 people responded to the Survey Monkey on Participatory Budgeting.

Q1.  We asked you if you had heard of Participatory Budgeting

Yes - 26       No - 80

Q2. We asked if you thought that Communities having a greater say in how Council Budgets are spent is a positive change.

Yes - 96        No - 10

We have grouped your reasons below:

  • People will have more of a say on what they actually want done in their areas, more transparency and involvement in decision making. (33 responses).
  • Everyone should have more of  a say on how budgets are spent to improve their local communities.  Peoples voices being heard at last. (17 responses).
  • People should have their voices heard. Involved in making decisions There should be greater control by those who use the services of the council. (5 responses).
  • People need help in their communities to get things done and to improve their community. (3 responses).
  • Get involved, help one another and be kind to one another. Brings the community together to think about what is really needed and important. (3 responses).
  • More of a voice on how money is spent in communities will empower local residents to get more involved with council tenant participation groups and Community Councils. (2 responses).
  • It is important that residents see their council taxes being used wisely. It gives them pride in their community if they have had a say.
  • It needs a better understanding. People need to have a fuller appreciation of the CE act and what they can do under it. People can't moan about how money is spent if they are in control of this.
  • In principle a good idea sharing responsibilities is positive.
  • Living in an area of high poverty and unemployment I feel decisions would be made based on this and to assist people on benefits rather than investing in making the area and businesses flourish.

Other comments offered:

  • improve council homes repairs
  • help homeless
  • develop community ownership
  • repair children’s play parks
  • improve community environment
  • mental health
  • training / jobs for young people
  • more community education.

Less positive statements:

  • Don't think it will make a difference
  • It is tokenism but it is a start.
  • Good idea in principle. but is open to abuse
  • I have already participated in group talks in the past not sure if it really made a difference
  • Not enough communication
  • I don't know were budget money goes as people never get to know
  • Gives the community a say in where the money is going instead of people sitting in offices
  • No matter what you say the Council won’t listen
  • Because the Council is in need of advice and guidance to make informed decisions.

Q3 We asked you how do you think we could raise awareness of Participatory Budgeting?

We received 101 responses (some offered various ideas)

  • Use of Social Media / Facebook                        43 responses
  • Articles in local Newspapers                              16 responses
  • Posters & flyers in community locations           19 responses
  • Face to Face meetings                                       10 responses
  • Campaigns / promote practical examples           9 responses
  • Community Groups x 5, public events                 5 responses                   
  • Door to Door x 4 , libraries x 4, local radio          4 responses                
  • Housing News x 4 or Housing Association          3 responses
  • Community Councils                                            2 responses
  • Private Sector /business /Home owners              2 responses
  • Schools, Partnership working
  • Simplify the language used
  • More presence from Local Authority

Other comments to Q3 included

  • Break down the Act, make it clearer what is on offer and make it simpler for people to understand and to act upon it. Face to face is best to get this across.
  • Partner with local anchor community groups. Define a clear, community led process which establishes the connection between identified need and possible community led solution. Highlight not only PB investment but other sources of possible funding investment available to communities. Promote existing community led success stories.
  • More promotion and make voting easier for those without digital access. You use wording that puts up barriers e.g. you use the term Budget Delegate but don't explain what that is!

We explained that there were a number of ways to get involved in PB.  For example, give us your ideas, participate in a focus group or become a Budget Delegate to help design spending proposals.

41 People left some form of contact details, a breakdown of postal area is below :

G81 – 20 people

G82 – 4

G83 – 3

Unknown address – 14

It is our intention to make contact with all of these individuals and invite them to our Focus Groups for further discussions and explanations on the role of a Budget Delegate.