Jul 11, 2023 - Politics

PB Cle collected more than 10,000 signatures in six weeks

PB Cle campaign manager Molly Martin celebrates the dedication of volunteers, who collected more than 10,000 signatures in just 45 days. Photo: Sam Allard/Axios

The grassroots coalition attempting to put participatory budgeting on the Cleveland ballot in November submitted signatures to the Clerk of Council's Office on Monday.

The latest: At a press conference outside City Hall yesterday, PB Cle organizers said 180 volunteers, in a six-week sprint, collected 10,582 signatures while registering more than 800 Clevelanders to vote.

  • Plus: Canvassers encouraged voters to oppose Issue 1, which would raise the threshold for passage of state constitutional amendments from a simple majority to 60%, in the Aug. 8 special election.

What they're saying: PB Cle's Nicholas Moses Ngong said participatory budgeting was not about "spiting" City Council or anyone working at City Hall.

  • "But there are no perfect representatives," he said. "The People's Budget is about celebrating the ingenuity and wisdom that already exists in Cleveland's neighborhoods without having to worry that an elected official may or may not support our energy."

The other side: City Council nixed a PB pilot earlier this year, and a number of council members have been outspoken against the ballot measure.

  • "There continues to be citizen-led initiatives to change [our] City Charter and can be harmful to city services," council president Blaine Griffin tweeted this weekend. "Please learn about the issues this upcoming election. There are consequences."

What's next: The campaign needs roughly 6,000 valid signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

  • If they've come up short, the clerk will alert them by July 20, after which they'll have 15 days to gather the remaining number.

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