The City of Austin is implementing a trial program in which it will help neighborhoods build bike paths, dog parks, and small public works projects if the neighborhoods provide volunteer labor, according to the Austin American-Statesman.
The Neighborhood Partner program has no funding yet, although city officials hope to provide up to $750,000 in next year’s budget, and leaders hope to complete up to 20 projects per year. The program is accepting neighborhood applications, and work is expected to begin in the fall.
The article reports:
City officials say they do not intend to replace spending on parks, roads, sidewalk repair and other public works improvements. Likewise, they said, the city does not intend to delay or shelve projects it has already scheduled.
Neighborhood advocates appear to be supportive of the project, although they are unsure exactly how it will work. Seattle has used a similar program for the last two decades. The program is designed to stretch city funds at a time of budget shortfalls, allowing small projects to be completed that would not have received funding otherwise.
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