Committee on Business and Economic Development Passes Budget Report Featuring Investments in District Small Businesses and Communities

Committee on Business and Economic Development Passes Budget Report Featuring Investments in District Small Businesses and Communities

Investments for the upcoming fiscal year include support for District businesses and commercial infrastructure with funds that support Certified Business Enterprise (CBE) capacity building, Main Street revitalization and expansion, financial stability, workforce investment, small business lending, and significant capital project financing.

On Wednesday, May 1, 2019, the Committee on Business and Economic Development, led by Chair Kenyan R. McDuffie, passed its budget report for Fiscal Year 2020. The budget is the culmination of months of work including public hearings, meetings with advocates and stakeholders, and a budget engagement forum in Ward 5.

With today’s vote in support of the budget report, Councilmember McDuffie said:

“Developed through the lens of racial equity, the Committee’s budget significantly invests in communities that have traditionally not received the investment other areas in the District have enjoyed. It expands proven programs and makes sound investments in other sectors such as education, public safety, health, and affordable housing.”

Support for Small Businesses:
  • Supports small businesses and neighborhood retail through expansion of the Main Streets program, including new main street organizations for U Street and Upper Georgia Avenue, as well as expansion of the boundaries of the Van Ness Main Street.
  • Funds implementation of program that incentives businesses to offer their restrooms for public use.
  • Funds Dream Grants, supporting over 30 micro-businesses in Wards 7 and 8.
  • Expands the District’s Clean Team program which keeps neighborhood retail corridors, and streets clean while putting District residents to work. This budget priority includes expansion of the Fort Lincoln Clean Team and a new residential clean team in the Trinidad neighborhood.
  • Funds a statue of a native Washingtonian woman to increase representation of women and people of color among those we memorialize.
Violence Prevention:
  • Transfers $3 million to fund violence prevention and intervention initiatives using the Cure Violence model within the Office of the Attorney General. The public health-based approach to violence prevention utilized here has shown early success and was first introduced to the District in Councilmember McDuffie’s Neighborhood Engagement Achieves Results Act (NEAR Act).
  • Protects victims of domestic violence, sexual abuse, or stalking from facing discrimination at work.
Supporting Seniors and Vulnerable Citizens:
  • Funds implementation of the Senior Strategic Plan, a comprehensive ten-year strategic plan that will serve as a long-term blueprint for the District’s senior community.
  • Funds Aspire to Entrepreneurship Program which trains returning citizens through a specialized curriculum on topics including financial literacy, marketing, and business management and development.
Affordable Housing:
  • To assist people experiencing homelessness, funds Permanent Supportive Housing and wraparound services.
  • Funds legislation mandating annual reports on affordable housing and small business engagement for District-funded projects.
Education and Childcare:
  • Increases the at-risk weight of the Uniform Per Student Funding Formula.
  • Supports healthy development for babies and toddlers by funding the Healthy Steps program within the Birth-to-Three for All DC Act.
  • In response to community advocacy, increases funding for renovation of the Arboretum Recreation Center by $3.5 million to include a half-court gym, formal fitness room, and community room.
  • Funds new lights at the Langdon Dog Park, as supported by the community and ANC 5C.