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Discretionary Funding Policies Fy 12

Discretionary Funding Policies Fy 12

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Published by: Queens Post on Jul 01, 2013
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New York City Council
Discretionary Funding Policies and Procedures
DiscretionaryFunding Policiesand Procedures
New York City Council 
February 2011 
City Council Discretionary Funding
Starting in 2006, the City Council began to implement a series of reforms in the use of 
“discretionary funds” –
funds that Members of the Council allocate to non-profit, community-basedsocial service providers to meet local needs and fill gaps in City agency services.Discretionary spending is a critical tool in meeting needs in our communities. As with all taxpayerfunds, the public deserves to know that discretionary funds are going to organizations with thecapacity and integrity to provide quality services free from conflicts of interest.The City Council has instituted a comprehensive set of measures to improve transparency andaccountability in the use of discretionary funding:In 2006, the Council began publishing a complete list of organizations receiving discretionary funds,along with the amount, the sponsoring Member or Members, and a brief description of how thefunds were to be used.Beginning in 2008, working in co
njunction with the Mayor’s Office of Contract Services and City
agencies, the Council implemented a thorough vetting process for each applicant for discretionaryfunds. Recipients of Council discretionary funds must demonstrate integrity, compliance, and asuccessful track record in providing the services for which they are funded.
In addition, at the Council’s request, the City’s Conflicts of Interest Board clarified the rules
governing discretionary funds in 2009. All organizations receiving funds are subject to these rules,and Council Members provide signed conflict of interest disclosure forms with each vote toapprove funding.This guide outlines the policies and procedures that govern the use of discretionary funds for fiscalyear 2012. It is intended for use by non-profit organizations seeking Council discretionary funds,Member offices, and the public.I believe the New York City Council has instituted the most thorough and comprehensive system forprotecting the integrity of this small but important source of public spending that exists in thenation.We value tremendously our community partners and the important work they do for ourconstituents, and we thank you for working with us and our partners in government to implementmeasures critical to ensuring the future of the services you provide.Christine C. QuinnSpeaker
New York City Council
Discretionary Funding Policies and Procedures
1. What is Discretionary Funding?
Discretionary funding is a duly-
appropriated sum of money in the City’s expense budget allocated
to an eligible not-for-profit organization by the Council or a Member of the Council under section 1-02(e) of the rules of the Procurement Policy Board (PPB).PPB Rule 1-02(e) allows certain elected officials
including Council Members and BoroughPresidents (but not the Mayor or City agencies)
to designate specific non-profit organizations toreceive funding as an alternative to funding programs through competitive procurement.Unlike competitively-awarded Agency contracts, discretionary funds contracts may only extend fora single fiscal year.
Types of Discretionary Funding
There are several categories of discretionary funding used by the City Council, each servingdifferent purposes. The following categories have developed through Council practice over theyears, and are subject to change in the future.
Local Initiatives
: Each Member of the Council receives an amount each year to be used
at the Member’s discretion to meet local needs in the Member’s district. These are referred to as
local initiatives
”. The amount is determined by
various factors, including local needs, theM
ember’s request, and other considerations, but is not less than $80,000
per district. Uses of localinitiative funding are not limited to any particular purpose or agency, except as otherwiserestricted by Council policy, PPB rules, and applicable law.
Local Initiatives
City Council 
: Organizations may apply for funding directly to the Speaker, orMembers may request that the Speaker fund an organization whose scope of services exceeds theirindividual ability to fund, or which serves a larger geographical area. This is often referred to as the
“Speaker’s list.”
Member Aging Discretionary Funds
: Each Member receives a fixed annual amount to fund seniorservices in his or her district through the Department for the Aging. Currently each Memberreceives $108,750.
Member Youth Discretionary Funds
: Each Member also receives $151,714 annually for theprovision of services for youth through the Department of Youth and Community Development.
: The Council may also initiate programs for the purpose of addressing community needsthat it feels are not met by existing Agency programming, or to extend the reach of agencyprograms to underserved communities or populations. In most, but not all, cases, the Council willprovide funding to specific non-profit providers. Initiatives are almost always citywide in scope,although they may be targeted to meet specific high-need communities or populations. Themethod of allocating funding varies by initiative. In some cases, for example, an historical provideror providers is renewed annually. In other cases individual members or borough delegations mayallocate initiative funds in an amount determined by an analysis of community need.

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