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Participatory Budgeting Pilot Program

Funding Opportunity Banner

On June 15, 2021, the Sacramento City Council approved the use of up to $1 million in Measure U funds for residents to propose ideas and vote on project concepts. The voting phase ended on Friday, November 11, 2022 and community-based organizations can now apply for funding to implement the winning projects listed below.

The deadline to apply is Monday, February 27, 2023 at 4 p.m. PST.

Notice of Funding availability (NOFA)

All prospective applicants should read the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) in its entirety prior to submitting an application, as the NOFA contains important project details, eligibility requirements, and the criteria that a selection panel of community members will use to evaluate applications and make funding decisions. 

Read the NOFA

Grant Application Instructions

Please complete the application questions in the NOFA using a separate document, as the application may not save your information if you leave the page and return at a different time. All application questions are required except those labeled optional. When ready to submit the completed application, applicants can copy their answers and paste them into each application field.

Budget Template

All applicants must include a proposed budget that is uploaded directly to the application. The proposed budget must outline how the applicant proposes to spend the grant funds and the grand total in the proposed budget should equal the Amount Requested in the application.

The City prepared a budget template to assist applicants that can be accessed in Microsoft Word or Google Docs format: 

If using the Google Docs budget template, applicants must be logged into a Google Account to copy and complete the template. Detailed instructions are provided in the template.

How to Submit Your Application

After you've prepared your answers to all of the application questions, completed the budget template, and are ready to submit, please click the button below to submit your application along with any necessary file attachments:

Apply Now

Get Help

The City is providing multiple opportunities for prospective applicants to ask questions and receive assistance, including two workshops that will provide an overview of the application process: 

Technical Assistance Webinar #1

Friday, February 3, 2023, noon-1 p.m. 
🔴 WATCH RECORDING

Technical Assistance Webinar #2

Monday, February 13, 2023, 6-7 p.m.
REGISTER NOW

Ask Questions or Request Assistance

If you have any questions or need additional assistance, please email your request to aroughani@cityofsacramento.org

Frequently Asked Questions

The City is posting answers to frequently asked questions below, as they're received. 

Click or tap to view Frequently Asked Questions

If the eligibility restriction for a project does not require the applicant to be a nonprofit organization, can a nonprofit organization still apply to implement that project?

Yes, nonprofit organizations are eligible to all ten projects. Only for-profit organizations are restricted from applying to certain projects, as identified in the project details. 

Can an organization apply for more than one project? If so, would they need to be separate applications?

Yes, there is no restriction on organizations applying to implement multiple projects. However, a separate application must be submitted for each project. 

For the projects that restrict eligibility based on the organization’s maximum annual operating budget, is an organization still eligible to apply for funding if they use a fiscal sponsor whose annual budget exceeds the maximum limit for that project? 

Yes, the organization using such a fiscal sponsor would still be eligible because the fiscal sponsor’s role is to pass funding through to the successful applicant. Therefore, the applicant, not the fiscal sponsor, is the intended funding recipient. 

Does the applicant’s organization need to be physically located within the same eligibility area as the project?

No. However, if the organization is not located in the same eligibility area, it must establish a presence in (not necessarily a physical location) and serve the residents of the area to successfully implement the project. 

Will a copy of proof of business licenses/documentation be required as part of the application?

No, this is not required at the application phase. However, any organization that receives a grant must have a City Business Operations Tax Certificate or an approved Application for Exemption. 

Do each of the submission boxes indicate the maximum characters and /or spaces?

No, unfortunately the application form does not indicate progress toward the 20,000 character limit. However, this limit is very high and can accommodate approximately 3,000 to 4,000 words or 12 to 16 pages of text. The City advises applicants to provide concise answers while providing enough details for the Selection Panel to understand the applicant’s intent. 

Is this grant opportunity only for non-profit organizations? Or will for-profit businesses be eligible to apply?

Nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply for all projects, while for-profit organizations are only eligible to apply for Project #s 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, and 9. Please see Table 2 in the Notice of Funding Availability for more information. 

How can an individual apply without their own business license/nonprofit?

Only organizations, not individuals, are eligible to receive funding. That is, all individual applicants must apply on behalf of an organization. This includes informal organizations that are not yet incorporated, such as some neighborhood associations. These informal organizations are allowed to use a formal organization as a fiscal sponsor. However, it is the sole responsibility of the applicant to secure a partnership with a fiscal sponsor. If a successful applicant is unable to meet the City’s contracting requirements within 90 days of being notified of their award offer, the City may rescind the award offer and instead offer the award to the next highest‐scoring applicant not awarded. 

If my organization is in the process of incorporating as a nonprofit, will that meet the nonprofit requirement for Project #s 3, 5, 8, and 10?

Yes, if the organization is in the process of incorporating as a nonprofit, that will meet the nonprofit requirement. However, if the organization is unable to meet the City’s contracting requirements within 90 days of being notified of their award offer, the organization must use a nonprofit fiscal sponsor to receive the grant award.

If a project is offering more than one grant award, can an applicant propose implementing only part of the project instead of the entire project?

Yes, this is permissible. For example, an applicant wants to apply for Project #1 and only focus on a single neighborhood. However, if only one grant is available for a project, then the applicant should propose implementing the entire project.

Is there a time span that each proposed program should run?

No, each project’s duration will depend on the nature of the project and the proposed budget. In general, projects should not start sooner than May 1, 2023 or end later than June 30, 2024. However, the City may make exceptions on a case‐by‐case basis.

Can a proposed project be an extension of an existing program that would be expanded/provided to the community being served? 

Yes, generally there is no requirement that proposed projects be a new program. 

Are the qualifications and experience weighted towards cultural competence? 

Cultural competence may be considered under both sets of selection criteria: Qualifications and Experience (Understanding of the community to be served) and Proposed Implementation Approach (Approach to addressing the unique needs of the community to be served). 

Here are the Winning Projects

Eligible residents who reside in the specific neighborhoods in the north and south areas of Sacramento voted for projects between Oct. 12 and Nov. 11. The winning projects that will be funded are as follows:

North Area Winning Projects

  • Neighborhood Cleanup Grants ($60,000): Funding for community groups to fund cleanup events around the Old North Sacramento/Gardenland/Del Paso Heights areas. 
  • Work and Mentoring Programs For Northeast Sacramento Youth ($100,000): Funding for organizations to implement youth development programs, including vocational skills training and mentorship.  
  • A Second Chance Career Opportunity for the Youth ($200,000): Funding for a three-month summer job/internship that provides work experience in a trade or computer skills for youth 17 to 22 years of age.  
  • Garden and Farmers Market ($140,000): Funding to support a mobile farmers market program that offers affordable food, cooking classes and community education to community members. 

South Area Winning Projects  

  • Teaching Tech ($100,000): Funding for in-school and afterschool digital skills training that teaches students how to code, design and educate.  
  • Additional Literacy Support for Elementary Students ($100,000): Funding for literacy programs that assist students in multiple grades who are behind in reading ability.  
  • South Sacramento Entrepreneurial and Career Academy ($125,000): Funding for youth and adult entrepreneurship training in South Sacramento.  
  • Transportation Van for Underserved and Unhoused Youth in Oak Park ($75,000): Funding to purchase a van and provide free and reliable transportation services for underserved students to access learning opportunities. 
  • Beautify Sacramento ($75,000): Funding for trash receptacles and pick-ups along streets of Sacramento in the vicinity of Meadowview/Mack Road. 
  • Sacramento Area Homeless Services Event 2023 ($25,000): Funding for a one-time event for people experiencing homelessness to receive services and enjoy food, music and community in a safe place.  

The ideas Voted On Were Submitted By the Public

The Measure U Committee called on community members to submit their ideas to invest $1 million in North and South Sacramento ($500,000 for each area) between April 11 and May 31, 2022.  

Community Volunteers Prioritized the Projects Appearing on the Ballots 

From May through September 2022, community members volunteering as Proposal Delegates reviewed ideas the ideas submitted for feasibility with City staff, prioritized ideas that best meet the goals of the process, and developed the highest priority ideas into project concepts. Those project concepts were placed on one of two ballots: one ballot for North Sacramento projects and a second ballot for South Sacramento projects.

Community members from voted on their respective ballots between October 12 and November 11, 2022. The project concepts from each ballot will be be funded in order of the total votes received until each $500,000 budget is used up.

How Participatory Budgeting Works

There are five key phases to the participatory budgeting process: 

Phase 1: Idea Collection (April 11 - May 31, 2022)

Any Sacramento resident can submit an idea for how to spend part of the $1 million. Ideas can range from a few words, such as “road repairs in X neighborhood,” to extensively researched project proposals. Idea collection will likely take place through multiple submission outlets and activities.  

Phase 2: Proposal Development (May 23 - September 12, 2022) 

Community members volunteering as Proposal Delegates will review ideas for feasibility with City staff, prioritize projects for the ballot that best meet the goals of the process, and develop the highest priority ideas into fully-fledged proposals. Finalized proposals will includes a detailed description of the project, its expected impact, a cost estimate, and an implementation timeline. 

Phase 3: The Vote (October 12 - November 11, 2022)

Once the proposals are finalized and placed on a ballot, community members will have the opportunity to vote for their preferred projects. The projects will be ordered based on the highest number of votes and projects will be funded in that order until the entire budget is used up. The results of the vote are then announced publicly. 

Phase 4: Application for Funding (January - March 2023)

Because the winning projects do not identify the organizations that will implement those projects, the City will open an application for community based organizations to apply for funding to implement the winning projects.

Phase 5: Project Implementation & Monitoring (beginning in April 2023)

Once the selected implementing organizations are identified and under contract with the City, the winning projects are then implemented and monitored to ensure they are completed according to the project proposal details. 

These Focus Neighborhoods Determine Project and Voter Eligibility

While any City resident can submit an idea, the ideas that will be prioritized for proposal development and voting must be located in or serve the residents of a focus neighborhood. The $1 million available for the Pilot Program will be evenly split with $500,000 allocated to the North Area and $500,000 allocated to the South Area.

View the eligibility map to see which neighborhoods will be prioritized

Focus Neighborhoods Map

A Playbook Outlines the Complete Process and Guiding Principles 

On January 31, 2022, the Measure U Community Advisory Committee approved a playbook to guide the implementation of the Participatory Budgeting Pilot Program and set expectations with residents on how they can participate. Read the Playbook.

INFORMATION SESSION VIDEO RECORDINGS

The City encourages residents to watch a past information session to learn more about the process. 

Program Evaluation

The City hired Third Plateau Social Impact Strategies to perform an independent program evaluation that will be published in early 2023. Learn more on the Program Data and Evaluation page. 

IN THE NEWS

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the Participatory Budgeting Pilot Program, please contact Ash Roughani, Special Projects Manager at aroughani@cityofsacramento.org or (916) 808-7751.