Mayor Bloomberg’s Fiscal Year 2011 Executive Budget calls for the restoration of community board funding to $198,895.
The restoration comes after almost $60,000 in reductions proposed by the mayor’s Office of Management and Budget earlier this year.
Those proposed reductions prompted many community board members to argue for “baseline budgeting” at April’s charter revision commission public hearings. Many boards also reached out for help to their borough presidents and City Council members.
In the end it was Mayor Bloomberg who proposed the budget restoration, possibly to dispel growing criticism that he was not supportive of the boards. Community board leaders had expected Mr. Bloomberg to leave any possible restoration to the City Council, which still must approve his Executive Budget.
The boards are volunteer bodies, each comprising up to 50 members appointed by the borough presidents, with half of each board’s appointments based on nominations by local Council members.
Community boards develop local budget priorities, provide advice to City Hall on land use, and through their district managers, monitor and coordinate local services. Each community board’s budget funds the salaries of its district manager and support staff, as well as office operating expenses, with the exception of rent, heat, light and power.