Davenport Institute Announces 2015 Public Engagement Grant Winners
The Davenport Institute for Public Engagement and Civic Leadership at the Pepperdine School of Public Policy announced its 2015 Public Engagement Grant Program winners. Made possible through funding from the James Irvine Foundation's California Democracy Fund, the Grant Program awards funds that are used to support cities, counties, special districts, and civic organizations in California as they endeavor to engage their residents on a variety of issues. The Institute's Advisor Council committee is pleased to announce this year's winners:
- La Palma: This Orange County city faces a significant structural deficit and is looking to engage residents in discussions about some challenging budget options.
- Marin County: A county that is facing a severe housing crisis as it seeks to engage new voices from diverse segments of the community to develop action plans and solutions to overcome barriers to fair housing.
- Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP): For the second time, a Davenport Institute Grant will be used to support a Participatory Budgeting (PB) program. In 2012, the Institute worked with PBP in Vallejo and will now work with the City of Long Beach in 2016. PB allows residents to determine what they would like the city to do with a particular fund set aside for the purposes. This is Long Beach’s second foray into the PB process, and PBP hopes that with Davenport Institute support, it will be able to engage a greater number and variety of residents.
- Riverside: This grant will seek to engage residents in decisions affecting vacant and underutilized properties (including city-owned land) through development of a “Northside Specific Plan.”
Starting in 2008 (then conducted through Common Sense California), the annual Public Engagement grants have been used in communities from Humboldt County to San Diego and from San Francisco to Riverside. Prior to beginning their public engagement campaign, grantees will receive training and consultation from the Davenport Institute to build understanding and support for the civic engagement effort amongst both administrative staff and elected officials.