News & Notes 899:Participate in our community budgeting process

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899 icon.jpg   News & Notes 899
4 December 2021

Participate in our community budgeting process

Dear Community, the BCC is currently preparing the City Services budget for the coming financial year (1 April 2022 – 31 March 2023) and would like to understand from the community whether they feel the budget is being allocated in a way which meets community needs and aims. Specifically, we would like to understand:

  • What do people consider to be priority areas for community funding? And how can this be reflected in budgetary allocations?
  • Are there any key services missing in our community, or existing services that should be budgeted for?
  • Where should funds come from to support our communal needs?

Therefore we are planning a series of engagements with the community throughout January and February, to help build the community’s understanding of the current budgetary allocations and also to help the BCC to better understand if these are serving the needs of the community.

We will use the outcomes of this process to inform the upcoming 2022/23 City Services budget. If any major changes are requested by the community these will be phased in over a longer time period, to avoid any abrupt changes for services and those supported by them as well as working in them.

We are planning two levels of engagement:

  1. Presentations and Q&A sessions, as well as a survey, open to the whole community.
  2. Detailed in-depth facilitated discussions with a randomly selected group of Aurovilians.

We have chosen to draw Aurovilians at random for the in-depth facilitated discussions, rather than choosing people to represent a particular sector. We hope this will enable us to gain a deeper understanding of how the budget impacts the wider community.

The potential (up to 30) participants have been selected from the masterlist using random ordering in a process overseen by the RAS, and filmed to ensure transparency.

Whether or not you have been randomly selected for the in-depth sessions, we hope you will participate in the community-wide sessions.

The first of these will be held in early January at Unity Pavilion:

  • Friday 7 January: 4.30 - 6.00pm – Presentation of the City Services budgetary report of the last financial year (20-21), followed by Q&A
  • Tuesday 11 January: 4.30 - 6.30pm – small group discussions to provide in-depth information on the various sectors of community services supported by the City Services budget.

These will be followed by the in-depth discussions with the randomly selected group of participants, the outcomes of which will be presented back to the community. Following this, a community survey will be circulated. The results will be shared with the community, along with the next steps identified to implement the inputs into the budgeting process.

We are looking forward to engaging with the community on our collective budget following these two unusual and challenging years, and starting the next cycle with a common understanding of our budgetary needs and aims.

In community,
Your BCC members (Aurosugan, Danny, Enrica, Fabien, Hans, Inge, Mahi, Mathan, Rathinam, Suryamayi)