On May 30, the DC Council held its first vote on the fiscal year 2018 budget, moving forward with a budget that included several of Councilmember Charles Allen’s top priorities. This included an increase in the per-pupil funding formula to 3%; significant investments in affordable housing, public safety, and aging-in-place programs; and fully funding the launch of Paid Family Leave.
For Ward 6, Councilmember Allen made schools and education a particular focus in this budget. He wanted to accelerate the modernization of several important Ward 6 schools. A key take away is Jefferson Middle School will begin planning and construction during FY18, a multi-year jump forward for the middle school.
“I have heard loud and clear from Ward 6 families that they want great neighborhood middle schools. With this budget, we’re on track for every neighborhood in Ward 6 to have a fully modernized middle school in the next few years,” said Councilmember Allen. “Budgets are about choices and I believe more than any other factor, young families are making decisions about their future based on the health of the school system.”
Additionally, the budget includes several other key Ward 6 items:
- Funds renovation of both the Southeast and Southwest branches of the DC Public Library System, as well as the collections budget to ensure a world-class library;
- Maintains funding for Lansburgh Park as both beautification and an environmental approach to crime prevention in Southwest;
- Locks in funding for both Yards and Canal parks on the southwest waterfront;
- Funds raising roads around Buzzard Point to address flood risk.
- Begins the renovation of Eastern Market Metro Park, aiming to make the area far more attractive to businesses and pedestrians, while creating new green space in the city;
- Key investment in the health and cleanup of the Anacostia River;
- Funds upgrade of two “pocket parks” in Ward 6 as both beautification and an environmental approach to crime prevention in east Capitol Hill.