November 8, 2023 | Update

Ward 1 Update: Meet the Chief, Vacant Properties, Safer Roads & Trash Talk


BKN logo

Councilmember Nadeau and others standing in a narrow space between two buildings, looks at the building and boarded up windows.     A group of residents, wearing coats on a chilly day, walk down a sidewalk away from the camera. One man is looking left toward a building.     Councilmember Nadeau, wearing a knit cap and pink puffer coat, speaks with a man in a baseball cap who is gesturing and leaning forward.


Hello Neighbors:

Thank you to residents and ANC commissioners who joined me last week for my Coffee Walk in Columbia Heights in ANC 1A. We talked rats, trash, public safety and looked up close at a vacant property on Hiatt Place. This property has been an issue for many years, and the Council has convened a working group to devise strategies for better addressing properties like this. 

On our visit, Commissioners highlighted concerns about teens entering the property. My staff and I will reach out to the Department of Buildings about securing the property. We also stopped by Columbia Heights Civic Plaza and, right around the corner, the location of the future stabilization (sobering) center at the old fire and EMS station on Park Road. Planning work has already begun. The District just opened its first sobering center last month near Union Station.

I resurrected these walks after a long hiatus during the pandemic. They are a great way for me and my staff to share updates on projects/issues we are working to address and to hear from neighbors and ANC commissioners on things we need to add to our task list. I hope you’ll join me on one of these when I come to your neighborhood. Stay tuned for details on the next one.

With the heightened concern by all of us about crime in the District and in Ward 1, there have been many more neighborhood walks ­– organized by me, MPD, and others. Two weeks ago, my team and I spoke with neighbors gathered for a public safety walk with the Mayor in Mount Pleasant about abandoned properties, parking enforcement and the redevelopment of 7-11, including Amigos Park, where I’m working with agencies on improvements and have funded a capital project. 

Also last month, Councilmember Brooke Pinto, Chair of the Council’s Public Safety and Judiciary Committee, and I walked and gathered input near U Street. We talked about some of the District’s existing tools, such as the crime lab and the 911 call center, which need to be made to work better. I’m pushing the Mayor and the executive branch on these and other public safety matters.

Police Chief Pamela Smith has accepted my invitation for the Councilmember Nadeau Ward 1 Town Hall with MPD Chief Smith to meet with Ward 1 residents on Tuesday, November 28, 6:30-8:00 pm at The Festival Center, 1640 Columbia Road NW. Chief Smith will share crime statistics for Ward 1 and her plans for policing in the ward, including topics such as allocation of officers and resources, community policing, and more. She will also take questions from the audience. Residents may also submit questions in advance online (watch for details) or by contacting my office: 202-724-8181. Registration is not required.

We will live stream the meeting for those who wish to watch from home. We will not be able to take live questions from those watching online.


One more way to connect: please join me at the next Brianne on Your Block office hours on Monday, November 13, from 6 to 8 pm at Tabla, 3227 Georgia Ave in Park View (ANC 1E). Register ahead or just show up and we’ll talk one-on-one about whatever is on your mind – from a specific issue on your block to larger concerns, such as affordable housing or public safety.

New ANC 1B06 Commissioner Miguel Trindade Deramo, wearing jacket and tie, raises his right hand as Councilmember Nadeau, holding a microphone and reading off a clipboard, administers the oath of office.

Congratulations to Miguel Trindade Deramo on joining ANC 1B as the newly elected commissioner representing ANC 1B06. ANCs are the most hyperlocal piece of our representative government. I’m always in awe of folks who invest their time, without pay, on behalf of 2,000 of their closest neighbors. Swearing in new commissioners is a highlight of my job. Congratulations to Miguel and thank you for the work you do.

DayVon Fuller smiling, stands in front of a D.C. flag, wearing a gray suit and tie.

On a personal note – and I know it’s personal to many of you, too – I was shocked and saddened by the death of DaVon Fuller, who worked as a constituent services coordinator in my office several years ago. DaVon grew up in Ward 1, was well-loved in our community, and worked incredibly hard in our office. He was a proud and caring father of two young children. His murder is a tragic loss and I sincerely hope there is justice for him. I send my condolences to his family, friends, and the community he loved, and that loved him back.

Brianne signature




Traffic safety is public safety and there’s been a lot going on with traffic safety in the Council these past few weeks, including talk of bus lane enforcement, four bills aimed at cracking down on dangerous driving and fake tags (my bill), and three bills I introduced that will improve the quality of living on city streets.

Councilmember Nadeau, facing the camera, is seated at a table with red tablecloth, speaking into a microphone, with councilmembers seated at either side. In the foreground is the back of Mayor Bowser's head, as she is facing Councilmember Nadeau across from her.

Bus lanes

We learned in September that the planned enforcement against driving in bus lanes, previously scheduled to start that month, would be pushed back, with no specific date in mind. This after we’ve been promised enforcement since 2021! Enforcement needs to begin now.

Bus lanes in Ward 1 and across the District desperately need enforcement – without it, they won’t work as intended. On 14th St, we’ve been asked to wait for camera enforcement before making changes to the bus lane, now in pilot for three years. Columbia Heights is in limbo.

Meanwhile, drivers that travel and park in bus lanes interfere with the transit of dozens of riders on every bus. This is no way to improve traffic and traffic safety for riders of the bus and drivers of cars.

We should think about fare enforcement and bus lane enforcement as the same thing. There are rules – why are we enforcing them only for transit riders? I pressed the Mayor on bus lane camera enforcement at the Mayor’s Breakfast meeting last week. She informed me and my colleagues that she planned to start enforcement in January. That’s not good enough.

Councilmember Charles Allen introduced emergency legislation soon after, which was approved by the Council Tuesday. It bypasses a procedural hurdle and requires the D.C. Department of Transportation to start enforcing bus lane violations on November 15. I fully support this measure.

Councilmember Nadeau is pushing her daughter along the sidewalk in a toy car. Her daughter is wearing a blue bird costume and holding a blue bucket. Councilmember Nadeau is also in costume. There are leaves along the sidewalk and cars parked alongside it.

Streets that support neighbors

How do you feel about making it easier to shut down your block for trick-or-treating? Well it wasn’t quite in time for this year’s Halloween, but I proposed legislation that would streamline the process of getting a permit to shut down your block on October 31 each year. Kids deserve a safe and fun place to trick-or-treat. This simple measure gives them that. Thanks to seven of my fellow councilmembers for co-introducing it with me.

I’d also like to make it easier for neighbors with mobility disabilities to park their car close to their house and to make modifications to their property to more easily access their vehicle. Seven councilmembers joined me in my Access to Home Amendment Act, which would do that.

Thank you to Chairman Charles Allen for holding a hearing in the Transportation and Environment Committee on October 26 and I hope that the committee will move it forward to the full Council.

Designing safer roads

Most D.C. residents do not drive for most trips – they walk, bike, and take public transportation. Yet the way we design and update our roads is based on an outdated focus on what’s called “level of service.” If cars on a road or in an intersection are slowed down too much, the road gets widened or otherwise adjusted to make it work better for cars – often at the expense of people using those other modes of transportation. In fact, our DDOT is required to use level of service for cars as the primary factor in making road design decisions.

What I hear from residents is a desire for more walkability and more safety overall on our roadways. When we put cars first in our planning, we lose that focus.

My Prioritizing People in Planning Amendment Act requires the Department of Transportation to develop alternative metrics that better reflect the way residents already use our streets and sidewalks, and to align with D.C.’s climate and sustainability goals.

Holding Drivers Accountable

In early October, the Public Works & Operations Committee, which I chair, and the Transportation and Environment Committee, chaired by Councilmember Allen, heard from public witnesses on four proposed bills aimed at accountability in traffic safety.

The four bills heard by the committees would: require immediate license suspensions for offenses such as impaired driving and negligent homicide, introduced by Councilmember Henderson; adding license points to moving violations captured by automated traffic enforcement cameras, introduced by Councilmember Henderson; target enforcement toward vehicles and drivers that have proven to be consistently putting others in danger, whether fines have been paid or not, introduced by Councilmember Allen; and go more aggressively after drivers who use fake license plates, which allow them to evade enforcement altogether, introduced by me.

On November 1, we invited representatives from DDOT and other relevant agencies to share their remarks and answer our questions.

As we’ve discussed, enforcement should not just be about who can pay. It needs to establish a clear connection between dangerous activity and consequences that prevent that activity from happening again.

Among my top concerns are the gaps in interoperability between agencies involved in traffic enforcement that were revealed by this hearing, and what the appropriate prioritization of DPW’s enforcement resources should be.

We seem to have a number of parallel enforcement regimes that aren’t working well together, if they are working together at all. There are in-person traffic stops, which according to the data are a very small proportion of infractions, but some violations can only be enforced this way. We’ve got parking enforcement, which includes the major consequence of vehicle immobilization, but one that’s less motivated by moving violations specifically. And then there’s the large ATE (camera) program, which doesn’t appear to be speaking to the other two systems very well, if at all.

As our new Public Works committee has dug into the details of booting and towing with DPW, it’s become clear that their authorizing statute doesn’t allow for prioritization of enforcement.

Booting and towing is one of the few effective methods we have for enforcement of dangerous driving, but that priority is not yet reflected on the ground. I think that’s in part due to the legislative mandate DPW has been given.

It’s imperative that we establish clear priorities for this enforcement, including making some of the more egregious violations – like displaying a clearly falsified tag – an immediately towable offense.


As we work together to reduce crime and hold people accountable, I’ll be reviewing the Mayor’s latest proposal, the Addressing Crime Trends Now Act, which she announced October 23.

At least one element of her proposals – the effort to combat retail theft – aligns with legislation I am working on. I also have concerns about elements of the legislation that could roll back civil rights protections and reforms such as prohibitions against chokeholds by police and measures that have faced constitutional questions in the past. I’m reviewing these with an open, but critical mind.

There are several public safety bills that deserve the Council’s attention now, including Councilmember Robert White’s Whole of Government Response to Crime Act, which I co-sponsored, my bill to increase recruitment to the police department’s Cadet program, and the permanent version of Councilmember Pinto’s public safety bill, which I voted to support in July.

In addition, the city must make the best use of the tools it already has at its disposal, some of which could better serve public safety, such as: more use of mobile cameras in crime hot spots, redistribution of MPD resources to areas with the most violent crime, securing full re-accreditation of the crime lab, appointing a permanent director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement, improving the closure rate on homicides, and fixing the failing 911 call center.

The District can’t prevent and respond to crime if dispatch can't successfully send first responders to the scene, the crime lab can’t process evidence, and the U.S. Attorney won’t prosecute.

I continue to engage with the police department, the crime lab, and other executive department agencies. I look forward to working with the Mayor and my Council colleagues on crafting new legislation and making our existing laws and policies more effective.

News from the Public Works & Operations Committee

The Public Works & Operations Committee took up three measures on October 19 that would impact how D.C. handles trash. On the agenda were measures that would require DPW to give notice when they plan to remove a public trash bin (Councilmember Lewis George’s bill); have DPW pick up trash at condo buildings with up to eight units (Councilmember Henderson) and improve the way DPW issues citations for trash violations (at the request of DPW).

Improving Accessibility to the Civic Process
Council should provide language translation and ASL interpretation

At our most recent administrative meeting of the Council – where we talk about various non-legislative items of business – we discussed the need for translation services and American Sign Language interpretation in community meetings, which I strongly support. I also advocated to colleagues that we need to make hearings more accessible. The Council already provides live translation in various languages when requested, but we must also translate hearing notices for people who speak languages other than English, so that they are aware of the hearings and their content. Yes, this will not be inexpensive, but all residents should have the ability to fully participate. This was the start of a conversation that I will continue to move forward.

Mayor’s Executive Order on Sexual Harassment in D.C. Government Workplaces
The Mayor issued her long-awaited update to sexual harassment policies in the executive branch which strengthens rules and protections for workers. The policy now provides clear guidance regarding workplace relationships and definitions of sexual harassment and requires more frequent training.

It also adopts a similar approach to legislation I have proposed, which would require investigation by an independent entity when allegations are made against mayor appointees. The Mayor’s order requires that for any employee that reports directly to the Mayor.

Clear guidelines and training are key to a successful sexual harassment policy. I was glad to see both in her order, including a change that now requires refresher training for employees every year, rather than every two years.

My legislation, the Sexual Harassment Integrity Act, will likely get its hearing in December. We’ll look to the Mayor’s order for possible adjustments. It is still important that we pass legislation because an executive order can be revoked or updated by the current or a future Mayor at any time, while legislation would set the practices in law.


Met with residents of Wallach Place to discuss public safety and other concerns | October 16

Met neighbors and talked about their hyperlocal issues at Brianne on Your Block office hours at Don Juan's restaurant in Mt. Pleasant | October 19

I stopped by a safety walk in Mt. Pleasant, arranged by the Mayor and got to chat with residents about concerns, especially around the area of Amigos Park, where I'm working with agencies on improvements and have funded a capital project. | October 25

Backs of kids heads with their hands raised while seated in cafeteria seats. Councilmember Nadeau is visible smiling, speaking to a young student standing in front of her.

Bancroft Elementary School Visit | October 27

It was so fun meeting with third graders at Bancroft Elementary School in Mt. Pleasant, who are learning about how government works. Really great and insightful questions! And thanks to Mr. Caruso for arranging and inviting me!

Every time I walk into this school I do a double take at how beautiful and well-designed it is because I remember what it was like before. Working on the renovation of Bancroft was one of the first things I worked on as a new Councilmember and incredibly rewarding.

Got to judge the apple pie contest at the Adams Morgan Apple Festival! Arranged by the Adams Morgan BID. | October 28

Met with ANC 1B commissioners for a Council update at their monthly meeting to update and to hear from them | November 2

President Vinson is on the stage in academic garb, surrouned by members of the faculty. Many audience members are seated.

Inauguration at Howard University | November 4

I was thrilled to celebrate the inauguration of Howard University's 18th president, Dr. Ben Vinson III. I'm looking forward to continuing our great collaboration with Howard and working with President Vinson.



View looking down S Street with cars parked on both sides and rowhouses.

Lane Closures and Construction along 7th St and S St

I worked closely with Ward 2 Councilmember Brooke Pinto to ensure funding for the S Street NW Revitalization Project, from 7th Street NW to Florida Ave NW. The project will make sidewalks wider and ADA-accessible, remove the dangerous slip lane, and add new tree cover. It will have the benefit of reducing cut-through traffic in LeDroit Park. I’m looking forward to working with residents, the Advisory Neighborhood Commission, and the LeDroit Civic Association to leverage that traffic reduction for even more improvement to streets in the neighborhood.

Work on the project began this week and is expected to continue through summer 2025. Streetscape projects of this scale take some time, as almost all components of the street, sidewalk, and utilities will be completely reconstructed. Construction hours will be 8 am to 5 pm, Monday–Friday, with occasional Saturday work. The first phase of work will take place in the 1700 block of 6th Street NW and is expected to extend through April 2024. You can read more about this project. 

I encourage any resident that lives on or travels through S Street, to reach out to me with concerns about the construction.


Bancroft Elementary Boundary Study Meeting

The Deputy Mayor for Education is hosting virtual school community meetings to learn more about the Boundary and Student Assignment Study and proposals that could impact the school community. Join on Wednesday night, Nov. 8, 6-7 pm. Register to join the meeting and watch the site for additional meetings. You may also provide feedback by completing the survey or sending an email to DME.planning@dc.gov.


Opinion | Why ‘soon’ is too late for D.C.’s sexual harassment response

Even more important, Ms. Bowser should support council member Brianne K. Nadeau’s (D-Ward 1) bill for an independent investigation in cases where high-level mayoral appointees are accused of sexual harassment.

Investigations and Reform Efforts Spurred by the John Falcicchio Scandal Have Gone Pretty Much Nowhere. What’s the Holdup?

Nadeau says she also hopes to hold a hearing in early December on her bill to automatically mandate independent investigations of any mayoral appointee to face harassment allegations going forward, and she expects to address some of these issues during consideration of that legislation. No less than 10 councilmembers signed on to support it, but it has also faced delays

New DC bills seek stiffer punishments for dangerous drivers

“Department of Public Works has the boots, and the towing cranes that can take these cars off the street and immobilize them," she said. "And so my focus on the committee has been ensuring we have enough parking enforcement officers, adding a number of staff with the booting and the towing divisions, the director has been adding more shifts.”

Thousands ticketed for driving 20-30 mph over speed limit in DC every year, data shows

“Department of Public Works has the boots, and the towing cranes that can take these cars off the street and immobilize them," she said. "And so my focus on the committee has been ensuring we have enough parking enforcement officers, adding a number of staff with the booting and the towing divisions, the director has been adding more shifts.”


Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1A Meeting | Tubman Elementary School, Tuesday, November 7

Brianne on Your Block – Come meet one-on-one with Councilmember Nadeau during "office hours" | Tabla, 3227 Georgia Ave NW, Monday, November 13, 6-8 pm

Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1D Meeting, Mount Pleasant Library | Tuesday, November 14, 7 pm

Councilmember Nadeau Town Hall with MPD Chief Smith | Festival Center, 1640 Columbia Rd NW | Tuesday, November 28, 6:30-8 pm 


Brianne K. Nadeau | Councilmember | bnadeau@dccouncil.gov

Ariel Ardura | Committee Director | aardura@dccouncil.gov

Jerry Clark | Constituent Services Specialist | jclark@dccouncil.gov

David Connerty-Marin | Communications Director | dconnertymarin@dccouncil.gov

Estelle McKinney | Constituent Services Specialist |

David Meni | Deputy Chief of Staff & Legislative Director | dmeni@dccouncil.gov

Maricela Nava | Deputy Chief of Staff & Scheduler | mnava@dccouncil.gov

Niccole Rivero | Chief of Staff | nrivero@dccouncil.gov

Sabrin Qadi | Legislative Aide | sqadi@dccouncil.gov