Participatory Budgeting

Participatory Budgeting is a different way to manage public money by engaging people to directly decide how to spend public funds. Palo Alto College sets aside $50,000 each year – $25,000 for student projects and $25,000 for employees. These projects are brainstormed, proposed, and voted on each Spring and implemented over the next 12 months. Each project proposal has a maximum budget of $5,000. This is the Palo Alto College community's opportunity to have their ideas turned into action. Fill out the application below, and submit the completed form by emailing

Voting is open for 2019 Participatory Budgeting projects from April 4–9, 2019.

Vote for 2019 PB projects

Participatory Budgeting Process

  • January 2019

    Wednesday, Jan. 23
    Info sessions at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. 
    Location: TBD

    Thursday, Jan. 31
    Deadline to submit an application to the Office of VP of College Services

  • February–March 2019

    Friday, Feb. 1
    Committee reviews applications and provides feedback  

    Monday, Feb. 11–Wednesday, Feb. 20
    Applicants provide additional information for application (as needed)

    Monday, Feb. 25
    Projects that would make changes on campus are submitted to Spaces Committee for approval.

    Monday, Feb. 25–Thursday, Feb. 28
    Revisions and final proposals due

    March 2019
    Applicants notified whether project is viable and can move forward to voting stage

  • April 2019

    Thursday, April 4–Tuesday, April 9 

    Voting takes place online. All Palo Alto College faculty, staff, and students are permitted to vote for up to three projects. 

    Wednesday, April 10–Friday, April 12  
    Votes compiled

    Tuesday, April 16 
    Winning projects presented to Palo Alto College Executive Team

    Wednesday, April 17
    Winning projects announced to entire Palo Alto College community

  • Student Project Funding Phase: April–July 2019

    Wednesday, April 17 
    Begin finalizing information needed for purchasing

    Wednesday, July 31
    Purchasing deadline


    Employee Project Funding Phase: September–December 2019

    Tuesday, Sept. 3
    Begin finalizing information needed for purchasing

    Friday, Dec. 13
    Purchasing deadline

  • Student Project Act Phase: August 2019

    Wendesday, Aug. 1–Thursday, Aug. 9
    Student project implementation, closure, and evaluation

    Tuesday, Aug. 21
    Project evaluation forms due


    Employee Project Act Phase: January 2020

    Jan. 14-18
    Employee project implementation, closure, and evaluation

    Tuesday, Jan. 29
    Project evaluation forms due

Applications and Forms

Participatory Budgeting Application (FY2019)
Participatory Budgeting Final Proposal Form (FY2019)

Past Projects

Palo Alto College piloted PB from FY2013–FY2015 with employee project proposals only. The program expanded in FY2016 to include student projects, alloting $25,000 to student projects and $25,000 to employee projects.


Employee Projects 

Project Title Budget
Interactive Technology for Ozuna Library  $5,000

Journey to Wellness (Year 1)

Palomino Patio $5,000
Puente Project – Transfer Support $5,000
Virtual Office Environment Classroom  $5,000

Employee Projects

Project Title Budget
Journey to Wellness (Year 2) $5,000
Library Study Room Dry Erase Boards $2,000
REFC Bike Trail $5,000
REFC Picnic Tables $5,000
Virtual Office Simulation Theater $5,000
Veteran's Monument (project cancelled) $5,000

Employee Projects

Project Title Budget
Creative Lighting for Breezeway $5,000
New & Improved Pal the Palomino (mascot) $5,000
PAC Chat $5,000
Palomino Patio Furniture & Décor $5,000
Ozuna Collaborative Studying Monitors $3,000
Virtual Simulation Goes Live $2,000

Student Projects

Project Title Budget
Butterfly Garden Revival $2,500
Eco Friendly Filtered Water Dispenser $2,500
PAC Map Track $2,000
Palomino Transportation Shelter $2,500
Private Student Courtyard $2,500
Relax, Reflect & Refresh $2,500
Water Fountain Upgrades $2,500
Zen Garden  $2,500


Employee Projects

Project Title Budget
Gym Athletic Custom Chairs $4,000
Lunch & Learn $2,800 
Ozuna Scannable Digital Wallpaper $5,000 
REFC Outdoor LED Sign & Stand $5,000 
REFC Water Play Station $3,800 
Student Success Support Center $4,400 

Student Projects

Project Title Budget
Club Fundraising Equipment $5,000
Donation Drop Box $3,000
Flags for our People $2,000
Outside Wellness Area $5,000
Relaxation Furniture $5,000
Swings $5,000


Employee Projects

Project Title Budget
Eleven Rivers Review $2,500
Gym Basketball Shooter $5,000
Library Exercise Mind & Body $2,500
REFC Supporting Children's Milestones $5,000
Tables and Chairs for Gym Events $5,000

Student Projects

Project Title Budget
Enhancing the Cafeteria $5,000
Farm in a Box Equipment $5,000
Hammocking for Success $5,000
Texas Native Medicinal & Edible Plant Trail $5,000
Vet Tech Picnic Tables $5,000


Employee Projects

Project Title Budget
Advising On-the-Go $5,000
Cable Machine $5,000
Light Up PAC $5,000
Little Free Library on PAC Campus $5,000
Scholarships for Dev Ed Students $5,000