Dr. Peixoto proposed a fix my street model for participatory budgeting to priorize such things as pothole repair. Here is another one-cutting University programs. At most Universities, a quarter of the programs graduate seven or few students per year! (83% in baccalaureate institutions) and (74% of Masters level institutions) (Chronicle of Higher Education, April 2 2010, Volume LVI, Number 29) And many University or planning cuts and some of these reviews start with the programs who graduate with five (or so) bachelors degree students per year over the last five years.
Could we have the citizens vote on which ones to eliminate-- But we need to consider combinatorial effects. Killing an engineering school also eliminates the need for advanced math classes and math professors. And the citizens of a state may want to drop one program but not all of them, or may only want to leave one instance of a very specialized major.
Many Military Bases were closed by an independent commission. Congress could have vetoed the entire list. This way allowed many bases to close which could not happen if each Congressperson that had a base in their district could fight them individually. So there are ways to close things down in a representative democracy.