Area Teens Invited to Submit Project Ideas for Youth Participatory Budgeting

(BLOOMINGTON) – The City of Bloomington Youth Participatory Budget Steering Committee, a project led by the Commission on the Status of Children and Youth, is accepting ideas for projects to be considered as part of the Youth Participatory Budgeting (YPB) Initiative starting Thursday, June 6.

YPB is a democratic process in which young community members determine priorities and vote on how to spend part of a municipal budget. Participatory budgeting has been shown to spark an interest among young people in the system and ideals of democracy and to increase the likelihood of their future engagement with local government.  In 2018, Bloomington City Council approved Mayor John Hamilton’s allocation of $15,000 within the City’s 2019 budget to the YPB initiative. YPB Steering Committee members have been meeting since April to select delegates and develop guidelines that will direct the process of reviewing proposals.

“It’s exciting to see this process take shape,” said Hamilton.  “Bloomington’s young people are especially dedicated to making a difference, and this opportunity offers them a new, real-life way to do so.  I look forward to hearing the fresh ideas that are proposed and selected!”

Project ideas should be submitted by students who will be in grades 8 through 12 during the 2019-2020 school year and who are enrolled in any public or private school or home-schooled in Monroe County. Applicants may submit more than one proposal. The deadline to submit applications is Saturday, August 10, at noon.

The three steps for submitting ideas are as follows:

  1. Students in grades 8 through 12  may submit their ideas via the YPB Idea Submission Form available at
  2. Steering Committee and Delegates review ideas to ensure they meet the criteria outlined on the website
  3. Public voting by Bloomington/Monroe County youth in September 2019 on the top five proposals.

While the Steering Committee encourages creativity and innovation, there are a few criteria every idea must meet, as follows:

  • Projects and events must take place within the City of Bloomington.
  • Projects and events must be completed within the $15,000 budget.
  • Projects cannot fund salaries or for-profit organizations.

Information about the City of Bloomington Youth Participatory Budgeting Initiative is available at For additional information, please contact Shatoyia Moss, City of Bloomington Safe and Civil City Director at or by phone at 812-349-3559.