Council’s Proposed FY 2019 Budget is Released

Statement from the Office of the Budget Director

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.

Given the high costs of operating a small business in the District—particularly in the face of rising rents—the Council seeks to assist small retailers with their real property tax burden. The Council’s FY 2019 Budget establishes a $5,000 tax credit that will allow 4,400 small retail businesses to lower or eliminate their minimum franchise tax bill or receive a tax rebate. The Council is also working with the Mayor to provide $12 million to address the needs of non-profits and residents who face a disproportionately high burden in paying DC Water fees related to a massive infrastructure project to reduce combined sewer overflows into the Anacostia River and Potomac Rivers.

The Council continues to make major investments in the District’s ongoing efforts to provide housing for the homeless and residents struggling to make ends meet. The Council’s Budget adds $15,643,845 to the Mayor’s proposed budget in new housing funding for low-income residents, people experiencing homelessness, and survivors of domestic violence. This investment will provide an additional 957 units of permanent and transitional housing vouchers and rental subsidies.

The Council Budget invests heavily in capital projects to resurface roadways, modernize schools, and improve recreational centers and other public buildings. So that major capital projects include Project Labor Agreements to protect workers and resolve labor disputes, the Council Budget funds a requirement that construction projects with an anticipated construction cost of $75 million or more will include a PLA between project contractors and subcontractors.

Finally, the Council makes a significant investment in arts and humanities by committing 0.30% or $30M of the general sales tax to establish a dedicated funding stream for the Commission for the Arts and Humanities. 

In addition to these highlights, the LBA report describes the significant changes that the Council made to the Mayor’s proposed budget and explains how these adjustments make the District a better place for its residents and businesses.

Committee Report for Bill 22-754, the “Fiscal Year 2019 Local Budget Act of 2018
Committee Print for Bill 22-754, the “Fiscal Year 2019 Local Budget Act of 2018
Committee Report for Bill 22-753, the “Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Act of 2018
Committee Print for Bill 22-753, the “Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Act of 2018