Federal Tax Counter:
June 21, 2018 -- Read More »
June 6, 2018 -- While the Council’s other business continues through budget season, and the oversight that’s a core component of budget time is also a year-round responsibility, it must be said that the Council breathes a sigh of relief once the budget is behind us. Having said that, we are not quite there yet. While the other bills comprising the budget have all been passed by the Council the requisite one or two times (based on the specific bill), the final element of the budget still faces one final vote. The Budget Support Act, the bill which incorporates the legislative changes necessitated by the budget, must be passed a second time. This vote will occur at an upcoming Legislative Meeting. With this one remaining budget to-do list item aside, the most recent Legislative Meeting allowed the Council to return fully to legislating. Two pressing items were the primary focus of the Council on this front. Read More »
May 31, 2018 -- Read More »
May 30, 2018 -- While “the District’s budget” sounds like a single, solitary item—it is not. In fact, with the implementation of DC Budget Autonomy (our right to approve the portion of our own budget that we fund locally), it has grown even more complicated. What is most commonly referred to as “the budget” is known at the Council as the Local Budget Act. It sets spending for the operating and capital budgets—appropriating local revenues as well as federal Medicaid and grants. Within 70 days of the Mayor introducing her budget, the Council must pass the Local Budget Act must be passed twice, two weeks apart. This year, the Mayor’s budget was introduced on March 21, the 70-day window will close on May 30, hence the required May 15 and May 29 votes. The counterpart legislation to the Local Budget Act is the Budget Support Act, which encapsulates all the legislative changes required to implement the mechanics of the Local Budget Act. The Budget Support Act had the first of two required votes on May 15, with the second vote to follow in June. Read More »
May 23, 2018 -- Read More »
May 14, 2018 -- The proposed Fiscal Year 2019 Budget and Financial Plan makes significant investments in the areas of small business tax relief, housing, human support services, education, and the arts and humanities. You will find a comprehensive summary of all the Council’s modifications to the budget in the Local Budget Act (LBA) report; I recommend that you begin your review with that document. Read More »
May 14, 2018 -- Today, it was announced that the Council of the District of Columbia would be one of just twenty-two institutions to receive artwork being deaccessioned by the Corcoran Art Gallery. The Council joins institutions such as the Phillips Collection, the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Howard University, the Supreme Court, and others in being chosen by the Corcoran Board of Trustees as an art recipient. The Corcoran’s Board had committed itself to keeping the Gallery’s former art in the District, and in fact, 99.4 percent of the Corcoran’s former collection will remain here in DC.
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May 11, 2018 -- Read More »
May 1, 2018 -- After a vigorous discussion of how best to respond to recent incidents of hate speech and antisemitism, the Council took to the steps of the Wilson Building, the scene of the earlier negative comments, to condemn hate speech and defend our diversity. Chairman Phil Mendelson delivered comments on behalf of the Council that can be viewed here. At the Legislative Meeting that followed, a measure was passed by unanimous vote to limit out-of-school suspensions so that children who struggle with discipline can, whenever possible, confront their struggles within the comparatively safe confines of the school itself.
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April 26, 2018 -- Read More »
April 19, 2018 -- Just weeks after the Council’s “Hearing the Council” radio show debuted on DC Radio, past shows are now being made available as a podcast. Each show consists of a half-hour interview with an individual councilmember. New councilmember interviews are added to the mix on DC Radio as interviews are conducted and produced for airing, with past interviews running in between debut shows.
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April 11, 2018 -- Legislation has a life cycle just like all of us do. At the 22nd Legislative Meeting of the current Council Period, that full spectrum was on display. Some bills draw great attention from the moment they are born. Such was the case with a measure introduced from the dais which would allow those sixteen years of age or older to vote. Other bills have to grow up quickly. This was true of an emergency bill enacting the District’s dedicated payment to Metro. While questions of specifically how the bill will be funded remain, the reality was that with the Maryland and Virginia legislatures having recently passed their dedicated funding bills, DC needed to follow suit in the short term. DC led the fight to get dedicated funding for Metro in all three jurisdictions, but the passage of the funding bill, though a formality, was still a necessity. Read More »
April 5, 2018 -- Read More »
March 29, 2018 -- On Tuesday, April 3, the Council of the District of Columbia will commemorate the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, in the context of the historic year 1968 in the District in general. The Council, along with Georgetown University, will be hosting a panel discussion entitled “Whose Promised Land? Reflections on 1968 in Washington, DC and the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” Read More »
March 21, 2018 -- Read More »
March 20, 2018 -- Chairman Phil Mendelson gave the following statement from the dais at today’s Committee of the Whole meeting, regarding Councilmember Trayon White’s controversial comments. “Last Friday Councilmember Trayon White posted a statement on social media that has been widely condemned, and rightfully so. I think I can speak for every member that the remark was inappropriate and evoked anti-Semitic rhetoric from the past. Councilmember White has apologized for the remark. Many councilmembers have said they accept his apology, and I find it to be sincere and unequivocal." Read More »
March 6, 2018 -- The Council conducts its oversight responsibilities on an ongoing basis, but this time of year, there’s oodles of oversight. Just as performance oversight is nearly wrapped up, and prior to budget oversight beginning, the Council continues to plug along with its other primary responsibility: legislation. At the most recent Legislative Meeting, the 21st of the Council Period that runs 2017 to 2018, the legislative item that filled Chamber seats and councilmember e-mail boxes was an effort to exclude single-family homes from the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA). Read More »
March 1, 2018 -- Read More »
February 28, 2018 -- The Council’s Budget Office examines minimum income programs in its latest Economic and Policy Impact Statement. This new study looks at what it would take to guarantee that every District resident has enough income to afford all their housing, food, health, childcare, transportation, utilities, clothing, and sanitary basic needs (hereafter referred to as "basic needs").
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February 15, 2018 -- You’ve attended Council hearings in person. You’ve tuned in to our televised proceedings online or on TV. Maybe you’ve even checked out our obscure, little-loved, and technocratic presence on Twitter, @councilofdc. Well, now you have the chance to listen to us on the radio. But this is not a Council hearing. This is “Hearing the Council.” “Hearing the Council” will air from 3-3:30PM every day on DC Radio, the District’s recently launched government radio station, which can be found at 96.3 on your HD4 dial, or online at dcradio.gov. Read More »
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