The phrase “budget presentation” usually doesn’t remind you of fun or the image of a game. But some people in Arlington say they should probably do so.
Creative presentations to inform and ensure involvement in the public quickly became an internet sensation.
It all started with him coming to Jay Warren’s game room for years.
“It’s a hobby, and it’s certainly a kind of nerdy hobby, but it’s something I’ve had since I was a kid,” Warren said.
He built a pint-sized Lego City that spanned multiple tables and consisted of thousands of bricks and years of work.
Still, that’s what he does in his spare time.
During the day, Warren is the director of communications and legislative issues in the city of Arlington, helping citizens engage in what is happening at the city hall.
From time to time, even if he admits, they can be a fairly dry topic.
His job is to make them interesting.
“That’s our struggle. You may not care otherwise, but how does it relate it to the residents who may affect them?” Warren said.
This includes the city’s annual budget video.
“How do you show how their money is being spent in an comprehensible and attractive way,” he said. We budget every year. We look at the important priorities that the city council has and what they want to build for this year. “
This is done one by one, or brick by brick, like his Lego City. This allowed his teammates to use Lego to create a video explaining how the city would fund fiscal year 2022, giving them the idea that Warren’s two worlds would clash. ..
In most cases his work has already been done.
“Again, it’s my hobby, so I spend a lot of time here,” Warren said.
The city’s videographers then intervened to make the magic come true and create a nostalgic four-and-a-half-minute stop-motion film to educate people about the $ 552 million operating budget proposed by Arlingtons. bottom.
And if the goal was to engage, you might say they knocked it out of the park. Once posted, the video spread by word of mouth and reached more than Arlington’s population.
“We’re probably pushing up nearly 700,000 views,” Warren said.
Still, for city officials, true success is valued by public participation provided in a fun way.
“We need that feedback. We need that input to make the right decisions for the people of Arlington,” he said.
Click here to watch the entire video.