Updates

Press Release | June 5, 2019

DC Council budget aggressively tackles homelessness crisis and funds quality-of-life improvements

Last week, the Council took an important vote on the budget that will set the direction for DC’s spending next year. It contains some significant wins for Ward 1 and on my priorities of addressing homelessness, supporting small businesses, building affordable housing, and keeping our communities safe. Below are highlights, but please feel free to get in touch with my office if you would like more detail on funded items.

Human Services

I lead the Human Services Committee, which oversees the District’s homelessness programs, as well as matters concerning welfare, social services, youth affairs (other than juvenile justice), and disability services. My goal is to make homelessness rare, brief and nonrecurring in the District, and this year we made major progress. 

  • In fiscal year 2020, through Permanent Supportive Housing and Targeted Affordable Housing, we will end chronic homelessness for 615 individuals. I worked hard in my committee to fund these programs and introduced a budget amendment that ends a corporate tax incentive that has been deemed ineffective. 
  • To address homelessness, I also secured $3.7 million to create a new homelessness street outreach program to connect residents with services and housing. 
  • I also fully funded the Solid Foundations Plan to end youth homelessness including 160 units of housing.
  • We expanded the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) by $615,000 in FY2020 and $215,000 a year for 2021 and beyond.
  • An additional $660,000 in grants to fund prevention of child abuse and neglect in the Child and Family Services Agency.
  • $500,000 to create the Close Relative Caregivers Pilot Program, which would provide subsidies to close relatives providing care to the District’s youth.
  • Increased funding to $1.15 million for Safe Shores, the District's child advocacy center, which facilitates compliance with laws on child abuse investigations.
  • We also fully funded my Public Restrooms Facilities & Installation Act, which creates a plan for the District to provide public restroom facilities, and incentives for businesses that make restrooms available to the public

  

Ward 1 

Some highlights of funding I secured for Ward 1. 

  

Quality of life and affordability

  • I secured nearly $2 million per year to fund the law I wrote and passed to replace lead service lines in the District. This will mean DC Water has funding to replace lead pipes on private property (on your side of the property line) in addition to public pipes.
  • Secured an additional $3.8 million to the Attorney General’s “Cure the Streets” program and an additional $500,000 to the Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement (ONSE) for Violence Interruption Grants
  • Secured $1 million in FY2020 to fund improvements and repairs to public housing in Ward 1 with local hiring for construction. After the Line Hotel failed to meet the terms of its tax abatement, I successfully redirected the funding to this priority that will help Ward 1 residents. 
  • Created a Main Street Organization to support small businesses in the U Street corridor
  • $213,000 in Local Rent Supplement Program funding to support the completion of an all-affordable housing project at the Maycroft Building in Columbia Heights/Meridian Hill
  • Expanded of the Mid-City (14th and U) and Lower Georgia Avenue Clean Teams by two new employees each

Education

  • I secured $3 million for school-based mental health services and $2.4 million to fund child development facilities for infants and toddlers (part of the Birth-to-Three program)
  • $375,000 for the New Heights Program for expectant and parenting students in DCPS
  • Increase of 2.36 percent in per-student funding for DC Public Schools 
  • $500,000 for a new gym at Columbia Heights Education Campus 
  • Future school modernizations
    • $64.3 million for Adams Elementary School in FY2024
      • $4.1 million for immediate improvements 
    • $34.7 million for Tubman Elementary School in FY2025 

Transportation

  • $300,000 in dedicated funding for the Eastern Downtown Cycletrack in Shaw 
  • $2.1 million for completion of the 16th Street Dedicated Bus Lane Project by 2020
  • $1.2 million for the Crosstown Cycletrack connecting Park View and Brookland via Irving Street
  • $130,000 for 2 new Rapid Flashing Beacons to improve pedestrian crossings at Irving Street and Hiatt Place NW and at Georgia Avenue and Girard Street NW
  • $3.5 million for a reconstructed streetscape of Florida Avenue NW from 9th Street to Sherman Avenue, including wider sidewalks and safer pedestrian crossings
  • $4.4 million for street repaving in Ward 1 – $28 million over 6 years, an increase of $6.6 million from last year

Parks 

  • $100,000 for improvements to Ann Hughes Hargrove Park on Columbia Road, 19th Street, and Kalorama Road NW
  • $900,000 for a new splash pad/spray park in LeDroit Park  
  • $350,000 for improvements to triangle parks in Ward 1 in areas with poor access to quality park space