Gotham Gazette

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Civic Engagement Commission

Civic Engagement Commission

  • ear vot bot

    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Ayirini Fonseca-Sabune, New York City’s first Chief Democracy Officer, quietly resigned in January and Mayor Bill de Blasio has yet to name a replacement to the position, even amid an especially complicated and consequential election year.

    The mayor created the office of DemocracyNYC to be led by the Chief Democracy Officer in 2018, announcing it in his State of the City speech that February. The office was part of a ten-point agenda aimed at

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  • council cojo

    Participatory budgeting was due for a big increase (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    A new citywide participatory budgeting program, whereby New Yorkers directly decide how to spend city budget money, was meant to be in place by July 1 but may end up being severely limited as the city suffers from the coronavirus pandemic and its multifaceted fallout. 

    Creating the participatory budgeting program was one of the core duties for the New York City Civic Engagement Commission, which was established in the city Charter through a ballot referendum in 2018 that was

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  • voting gen elect

    Voters will have greater access to interpreters at the polls this fall (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    The still-new New York City Civic Engagement Commission is set to launch a poll-site language assistance program for the fall general election, expanding on the limited interpretation services that are currently provided by the Board of Elections. 

    As required by the Voting Rights Act, the Board of Elections only provides interpreters to assist at poll sites in Spanish, Korean, Chinese, and Bengali. But New York City residents speak more

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    Mayor de Blasio & First Lady McCray participate in participatory budgeting (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    The New York City Civic Engagement Commission, established through a charter amendment approved by voters in 2018, is tasked with crafting a new citywide participatory budgeting program modeled after the City Council’s efforts to engage New Yorkers in funding local projects. A plan is required to be in place by July 1, the start of the next city fiscal year.

    But Mayor Bill de Blasio’s $95.3 billion preliminary budget proposal for next fiscal

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  • voting gen elect

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The New York City Board of Elections, a state entity funded by the city, has a less-than-stellar reputation for running elections and has long been resistant to going beyond the letter of state law in improving voter access and participation. And this year, the city BOE must contend with a new state mandate to create an early voting program for potentially millions of voters, as well as a push by the city to provide broader poll site interpretation services in immigrant communities.

    At a Tuesday

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  • may b deblasio schools

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio named his eight appointees to a new charter-mandated Civic Engagement Commission on Tuesday, weeks past the April 1 deadline for creating the commission. City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens borough presidents also announced their appointees while the other two borough presidents have yet to do so.

    The 15-member commission

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  • city council mdblasio

    (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    Last November, more than 1 million New Yorkers voted “yes” on a ballot question to create a new New York City Civic Engagement Commission tasked with launching a citywide participatory budgeting program, providing interpreting services at poll sites, and more broadly working with community based organizations to get the city’s residents more involved in city civic life and government. Once approved by voters, the measure called for 15 commission members appointed by several top city elected officials, mostly by

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  • decide madrid

    (photo: @decidemadrid)


    Madrid turns its residents’ collective passions and intelligence into tangible improvements to city life. New York should do the same.

    New Yorkers had until February 22 to apply to join the Civic Engagement Commission (CEC), a new entity that city voters approved last election to manage civic engagement processes throughout the city. The commission, which will be officially named in April by a

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  • city council torres lander levine barron pub

    Council Members Lander, Torres, Barron & others (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    The Civic Engagement Commission that city voters approved in November is now accepting applications from New Yorkers interesting in serving on the panel that will help craft strategies for getting more residents of the five boroughs engaged in civic life. Though appointments to the commission will be made by top city elected officials, the open application process allows regular New Yorkers to throw their names and

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  • schools chancellor reg

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    This is part of AGENDA 2019, a joint Gotham Gazette-City Limits project
    Find the rest of the series here

    Voters approved three ballot proposals on Election Day to amend the New York City charter, the city’s foundational

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  • community meeting

    (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    On Election Day, New Yorkers passed three ballot measures intended to strengthen local democracy. One of the approved plans is for the city to create a Civic Engagement Commission that will have several key responsibilities, including a new citywide participatory budgeting (PB) program, assistance to city agencies and nonprofits for their engagement efforts, and support to community boards to make them more participatory and representative of the communities they serve.

    The passage of these ballot measures -- which

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  • participatory budgeting

    (photo: @pb_nyc)


    On Election Day -- Tuesday, November 6 -- New Yorkers have a unique opportunity to vote for democracy. By voting “yes” on three ballot proposals, we can turn New York City into a beacon for democracy.

    The ballot proposals will make it easier for ordinary New Yorkers to run for office, vote in elections, have a say in city decisions, and serve on community boards. They will make our government better and our voices stronger.

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