May 3, 2024

Mayor Brandon Johnson Centers Community Involvement with Expanded Strategy for Engagement on City's FY2025 Budget

Day three of countdown to first-year anniversary highlights increased community engagement in the 2025 budget process and takes a look at how the Johnson Administration has prioritized overall engagement with residents across the city.

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO – The Office of Mayor Brandon Johnson, in collaboration with the Office of Budget and Management (OBM), is proud to announce a comprehensive three-phase approach to engage the community in shaping the fiscal year FY2025 Budget. This initiative marks a significant step towards fostering year-round engagement on the City’s budget process and priorities. 

Today’s release highlights the work of the Mayor’s Office of Community Engagement and is the third in a series of reflections on the first year leading up to the May 15, 2024, first-year anniversary of the Johnson Administration.     

"Our administration is committed to ensuring that the voices of Chicagoans are heard and valued in the budgeting process," Mayor Brandon Johnson said. "This three-phase community engagement strategy reflects our dedication to understanding the priorities of Chicago’s diverse communities, and better informing them of our vision for the City." 


The engagement approach, framed around Participation, Equity, Education, and Transparency & Accountability, aims to empower residents to actively contribute to the budgeting process. Starting with Phase I, scheduled from April to May, the City is conducting virtual meetings with existing City Engagement Councils, Advisory Councils, and other community groups. These sessions will serve as forums for educating participants on the City's budget development process and gathering program and service priorities across various topics areas, including Affordable Housing and Homelessness Services, Community Safety, Environmental Justice and Infrastructure, Neighborhood and Community Development and Arts and Culture, and Mental Health and Public Health


Phase II, set to take place from May to June, will involve engaging with a diverse array of stakeholders to co-design a portion of the engagement process for the Phase III round-table events. This phase underscores the Johnson Administration’s commitment to inclusivity and collaborative decision-making. 


The culmination of the engagement process will be Phase III, scheduled for July, featuring round-table events open to the general public. Full details will be shared after the Phase II co-design process, but these Phase III events aim to provide a platform for deeper conversations on prioritized programs and services across budget topic areas, allowing residents to share ideas, comments, and feedback directly with City officials. 


Later in the summer and fall the City, in collaboration with the Great Cities Institute, University of Illinois Chicago, will issue a public report on the findings of the engagement process. Finally, Mayor Johnson, after introducing his formal budget recommendations in the fall to the City Council and the public, will hold an event to answer questions and receive feedback from the community about his plans for the FY2025 budget.  


“The Office of Budget and Management takes seriously the budget engagement process and the need for government to provide information to, and hear from, those it serves,” said Budget Director Annette Guzman. “We appreciate the time and attention given by all Chicagoans who engage with us and help us ensure we are building a budget that is responsive to the needs of Chicagoans.” 


Residents interested in participating in the budget engagement process are encouraged to watch the Budget 101 video and share their ideas and feedback via the 2025 Budget Portal. For more information on the FY25 Budget Engagement Strategy and how to get involved, please visit the City’s FY2025 Budget Engagement site. 


This enhanced budget engagement comes as an extension to Mayor Johnson’s existing community engagement strategy. At the start of his term, the mayor met one-on-one with all 50 alderpeople, and as of today, has participated in an official event in all 50 wards. Mayor Johnson has also attended more than 600 official meetings and events outside of City Hall – the majority of which have been neighborhood-specific – which includes more than 80 school visits, and Chicago’s first ever youth budget engagement which was attended by more than three-hundred and fifty participants. 


“The mayor campaigned on investing in people, and in this first year, he has been dedicated to delivering one of most important investments we can make, and that is time,” said Deputy Mayor for Community Engagement Jackie Rosa. “We are engaging communities and stakeholders that have often been left out of important conversations around how to move our city forward, and we look forward to building on that in year two.”