Participatory Budgeting: not just for regular budgets

The Participatory Budgeting Project has a guide for communities that want to participate in decisions about the use of funds from Tax Increment Financing districts. The governance structure associated with Tax Increment Financing varies by state (and not all states have TIF), but there are potentially significant amounts of funding at …

Defending public pensions

I’ve written a lot about how public pensions came to be blamed for the fiscal crisis looming (or already “crippling”) many cities and states. The National Public Pension Project has been working since 2007 to change the narrative about the value of public pension plans, and has an interesting website …

The federal budget, battleground

So much to say about Obama’s budget, the geek in me actually wants to read the entire plan, but I have this pesky dissertation to finish instead. Budgets are inherently redistributive documents, in one direction or another. Obama’s proposal is being characterized as a bold effort to redistribute the benefits …

Informal Economy Budget Analysis

I just stumbled across this concept today (during the San Francisco Bay Area superstorm!): Informal Economy Budget Analysis. Pioneered by Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO). In their words: Informal Economy Budget Analysis (IEBA) examines how government budgets address the needs and interests of different groups of informal …

Peter Marcuse on Participatory Budgeting

I’ve just discovered Peter Marcuse’s blog on critical planning, and the post at the top is on participatory budgeting. Marcuse’s 1981 article “The targeted crisis: on the ideology of the urban fiscal crisis and its uses” has been instrumental in framing my dissertation, so I’m excited to see that he’s …