Category Archives: Finances

BLOG: Report on quarterly ANC Chairs meeting with Mayor Gray: FY 2015 budget

Cross-posted at www.willstephensanc.com

On Monday, April 7th, Mayor Gray hosted his quarterly meeting with ANC Chairs and agency heads.  This is an initiative that the Mayor started about 3 years ago.  The meeting usually begins with introductions, and then a presentation or two from various city agency representatives, followed by questions and open discussion.  These sessions can be very useful because the Mayor includes all of the agency heads at the meetings.  This way, there is always someone to answer any question that arises, and the Mayor can direct an agency head to follow up on concerns or issues raised during the discussion.  I hope whoever is the next mayor will continue this new tradition.

Monday night’s meeting focused almost exclusively on the budget.  The session began with a presentation on the Mayor’s proposed FY 2015 budget by Eric Goulet, Director of the Mayor’s Office on Budget and Finance.  Full budget information is available here.

Some overall highlights of the budget overview included the following:

  • Increases the District’s fund balance to $1.75 billion (the highest ever) to improve the city’s bond rating;
  • No new taxes or fees;
  • Represents a 4.5% total increase over the approved FY 2014 budget;
  • Human services and education make up over 60% of the total budget; and
  • 71% of the budget is generated from local taxes and fees (with the rest coming from federal grants, payments, and Medicaid).

With respect to the ANC and our part of the city in particular, some highlights of the budget presentation included the following:

  • $38 million for renovation of Garrison Elementary School;
  • Property tax relief for seniors (based on the recent legislation sponsored by Councilwoman Anita Bonds);
  • Creation of a “One City Business Portal” for unified licensing and permitting;
  • Fully funds a force of 4,000 police officers; and
  • $114 million for sidewalk repairs, bicycle, and pedestrian improvements (including eliminating the current $18 million backlog of outstanding sidewalk repairs).

This is the third year that the Mayor has discussed the budget with ANC Chairs, followed by town hall meetings around the city.  I thanked the Mayor for respecting the intelligence of ANC Commissioners and residents by hosting these sessions.  The budget is probably the most important piece of legislation that the Council passes each year, but at the same also the hardest for individual residents and stakeholders to understand, because it is so large and dense.  The budget puts hard dollars toward priority items and thus reflects our values as a city — how we want to improve the quality of life and help people.  I appreciate that the Mayor is willing to explain clearly the priorities reflected in the budget proposal, package it in a way that is understandable, answer difficult questions about it, and solicit feedback on it.

With regard to specific budget items that we discussed at the quarterly meeting, I thanked the Mayor on behalf of our ANC for the Garrison School funding, as well as for funding the backlog of sidewalk repairs, given the heavy pedestrian traffic in our area.  I suggest that ANC Commissioners host walk-throughs of their Single Member Districts to make sure any necessary sidewalk repairs are noted and logged in the District Department of Transportation’s list in order to get repaired between now and the end of FY 2015.  I’ll be doing a sidewalk repair walk-through in 2B08 with DDOT representatives in May.

The Mayor, Mr. Goulet, and others will be holding town hall meetings in each ward to discuss the budget proposal.  The Ward 2 Budget town hall meeting will take place at the Sumner School (17th and M) at 6:30pm on Thursday, April 24th.  Community members are encouraged to attend.

NEWS: Free Financial Planning Day (Nov. 2nd)

The D.C. Government is providing free financial planning advice to D.C. residents on Saturday, November 2nd.  Please see the following press release from the Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking:

DISB header
For Immediate Release 
Oct. 23, 2013

 

Free Financial Planning Day for Metro Washington Residents:Nov. 2

 

 

Washington, D.C. (Oct. 23, 2013) – We’ve all heard that there’s no free lunch, but in these challenging economic times, D.C. area residents will be able to get free financial planning advice and guidance from professional financial planners at the 4th annual Metro Washington Financial Planning Day Nov. 2 at the Columbia Heights Educational Campus.

 

The D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking is co-hosting this event with the Financial Planning Association of the National Capital Area and others to provide residents with free advice on budgeting, retirement planning, income taxes, investment strategies and more.

 

See more information below and get all the details, including registration, at:www.FinancialPlanningDays.org/DC

 

WHAT: The Metro Washington Financial Planning Day is an opportunity for residents to meet one-on-one with highly qualified Certified Financial Planner™ professionals and experts from the Financial Planning Association to address important financial issues including: getting out of debt, retirement planning, investment strategies, income taxes, insurance, mortgages and foreclosures and more. The event will also feature a series of classroom-style educational workshops addressing key personal finance topics including financial planning for women, real world retirement planning and how to be a smart investor.

WHEN: Saturday, Nov. 2, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

 

WHERE: Columbia Heights Educational Campus, 3101 16th St., NW, Washington, D.C. 

 

WHO: The Metro Washington Financial Planning Day is a part of the national Financial Planning Days initiative, a ground-breaking program involving city governments and thousands of financial planners nationwide, in an effort to provide free financial education and programming to people nationwide. The D.C. event is organized by the Government of the District of Columbia, the D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking and the Financial Planning Association of the National Capital Area, in partnership with four national non-profit organizations – Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Financial Planning Association, Foundation for Financial Planning and the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

 

TO PARTICIPATE:  Metro Washington Financial Planning Day is free and open to the public. Registration is available online at www.FinancialPlanningDays.org/DC or by calling toll free at (877) 861-7826.  Walk-ins are welcome. The venue is located just one block from the Columbia Heights Metro Station on the green and yellow lines.

 

Members of the news media are invited to attend the event and interview the organizers.

For more information contact:  Tanya Bryant, D.C. Dept. of Insurance, Securities and Banking,(202) 442-7761 or tanya.bryant@dc.gov;  Daniel F. Drummond, Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., (202) 379-2252 or ddrummond@CFPBoard.orgMelissa Sotudeh, CFP®, Financial Planning Association of the National Capital Area, (301) 961-9505 or msotudeh@warner-financial.com


DISB logo D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking | Office of Communications | 810 First St., NE, Suite 701, Washington, D.C. 20002 | Office: 202-727-8000 | Fax: 202-576-7989
The D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking has two missions: to fairly and efficiently regulate financial services in order to protect the people of the District of Columbia and to attract and retain financial-services businesses to the District. For more information, visit DISB at disb.dc.gov

NEWS: ANC Publishes Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2012

At its January 2013 meeting, the ANC approved the FY 2012 Annual Report submitted by Chairman Will Stephens.  The annual report provides a snapshot of the activities of the ANC from October 2011 through September 2012 — including votes taken, issues discussed, achievements, personnel, staff, and finances.

Particularly interesting are the statistics showing how the ANC voted on regulatory applications (alcohol, public space, zoning, historic preservation) over the course of the year.

DC law requires ANCs to submit annual reports to the Council each year.  At minimum, these required reports must include a breakdown of the ANCs finances and key activities and votes.  The Dupont Circle ANC has in recent years generated annual reports that are meant to serve a broader audience — including new and old residents, businesses, other ANCs, and other community stakeholders.  It is intended to be attractive and easy to read, in addition to being informative.

You can find the FY 2012 Annual Report on our Annual Reports page, along with reports going back to 1976, the first year of the ANCs.

In addition, a PDF of the new FY 2012 Annual Report is available here: FY2012-AnnualReport-FINAL(1-9-2013).

NEWS: ANC 2B Considering a Grant-Giving Process

For some time, Dupont Circle ANC has discussed the possibility of having a grant-giving process, which the ANC had from the 1980s until the early 1990s.  The ANC’s Community Involvement Committee has had two public meetings on the idea, and also did research on the rules applicable by DC statute, as well as what other ANCs do to consider and manage grants.

Enclosed here is a paper put together by Community Involvement Committee Chair Mike Feldstein that discusses the statutory background, what other ANCs do, and the discussions to date at the Committee meetings.