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Mayor Bowser Highlights #DCHOPE Investments

Thursday, October 1, 2020

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Today, on the first day of the new fiscal year, Mayor Muriel Bowser highlighted the investments included in her Fiscal Year 2021 approved #DCHOPE budget.

Affordable Housing

Mayor Bowser remains committed to ensuring residents have access to affordable, safe, and high quality housing. The Fiscal Year 2021 budget includes:

  • Sixth consecutive year at least a $100 million investment in the Housing Production Trust Fund to support the production of new affordable housing.
  • Adds $2.1 million in FY21 to leverage a total of $8.4million for the Housing Preservation Fund.
  • $65 million across FY21 and FY22 to renovate and rehabilitate properties within the Housing Authority portfolio, plus $30 million for the New Communities Initiative to revitalize severely distressed subsidized housing and redevelop neighborhoods into vibrant mixed-income communities.
  • $20.3 million to provide affordable homeownership for residents through the Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP) and Employer Assisted Housing Program (EAHP)
  • To spur new affordable housing development in high-need areas, (Rock Creek West, Capitol Hill, Rock Creek East and Upper Northeast), the budget included the Mayor’s legislation to establish a pilot property tax exemption for projects that include 33% of units affordable at an average of 80% MFI or below, include an affordability covenant of at least 30 years, and deliver by 2025.

Jobs and Opportunity

The FY21 budget continues to invest in programs and opportunities to ensure more Washingtonians can access opportunities for employment and business growth. The FY21 budget includes a number of investments to support small and local businesses and entrepreneurs, including:

  • $7 million for Great Streets and the Neighborhood Prosperity Fund grants, two programs that help to support existing and new small businesses.
  • $200,000 for DC Anchor Partnership, which increases opportunities for small businesses to contract with anchor institutions, such as universities and hospitals.
  • $200,000 for the Dream Grants Program which provides business development support for microbusinesses in Wards 7 and 8.

Health Care

The FY21 budget includes major investments to build a more equitable health care system in the District and serve the health care needs of residents in all eight wards, including:

  • $365 million for a new, state-of-the-art hospital and ambulatory center at St. Elizabeths. The 136-bed center will provide maternity services and newborn deliveries and help address inequalities in health outcomes and provide a comprehensive network of care to meet Ward 7 and Ward 8 residents’ needs.
  • $35 million in additional funds to support increased enrollment in Medicaid as a result of the public health emergency.
  • $4.2 million to support five new Centers of Excellence at Howard University Hospital and $25 million to support the development of a new Howard Hospital, to be completed by 2026 (plus future tax abatements of $225 million).
  • $4.8 million to implement recommendations from the Mayor's Commission on Healthcare Systems Transformation to reduce reliance on emergency care and improve health outcomes.
  • $1.4 million in grants for developmental disability service providers and increased Stevie Sellows fees to provide $1.6 million for intermediate care facilities to pay increased wages to their staff.

Families and Seniors

To keep DC affordable for families and seniors across the income spectrum, the FY21 budget invests in programs that support residents at every stage of life. The Grantmaking Authority to Expand Access to Quality Child Care Emergency Amendment Act of 2020 provided the Mayor with authority to issue grants to non-profit and community-based organizations to increase access to affordable, quality child care.

  • $75 million for childcare and early childhood education at 17 schools, creating 540 new early childcare seats and 180 Pre-K seats.
  • $3.49 million in continued funding for 10 Family Success Centers in targeted neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River.
  • $3 million for the District’s Safe at Home program, supporting senior residents’ ability to age in place.
  • $250,000 to provide grants for dental services to help seniors.


The FY21 budget continues to invest in the District’s public schools to support students, teachers, and staff and help them thrive through increased services and modernized facilities.

  • 3% increase to the uniform per student funding formula (UPSFF) for a total of $1.92 billion to serve an estimated 98,171 DC public traditional and charter school students.
  • $21.8 million for the continued investment in the school-based mental health program
  • $6 million for the continued expansion of IT devices and supports.
  • $90.3 million for programs and services at UDC and $136.5 million in capital improvements for university facilities.
  • $1 million to help open the new MLK Library and $38.2 million for new Parklands-Turner and Chevy Chase public libraries.
  • $75 million in capital funds to support 17 schools in the creation of 540 new early childcare seats and 180 Pre-K seats.
  • $1.3 billion to expand or modernize 41 schools, including:
    • $80.2 million to open a new Bard High School Early College.
    • $56 million to open a new Foxhall Elementary School.
    • $6 million to create space for a new Early Childhood Development Center and expand Pre-K seats at Amidon-Bowen Elementary School.
    • $22.7 million for a new expansion at Barnard elementary school.
    • $27.8 million to add five new PACE elementary schools for modernization.
  • Create a permanent home for Excel Academy and invest over $52 million to renovate Spingarn High School to create a long-term home for the DC Infrastructure Academy. ​

Transportation, Infrastructure, and the Environment

To support the expansion of and access to safe, sustainable, affordable, and reliable transportation options, the FY21 budget includes:

  • $464 million to improve the condition of District streets, sidewalks, and roadways.
  • $56 million in roadway and intersection safety improvements, bike lanes, and trails, and $146 million for streetscapes that make it safer to walk or bike.
  • $137 million for DC Streetcar, including extending the line to the Benning Road Metro Station, and $117 million for completion of the K Street Transitway by 2024.
  • $6.5 million to support continued improvement of the DC Circulator system.
  • $17.8 million for bus priority and efficiency initiatives, including dedicated bus lanes and other measures to help buses bypass traffic congestion.
  • $2.8 million to continue dedicated towing services and bike lane enforcement during rush hour to support safer and more efficient commutes.
  • $57.5 million to clean up the Anacostia River, including environmental remediation at Poplar Point and Kenilworth Park, to help make the river fishable and swimmable again.
  • $51 million for tree planting and urban forestry efforts to protect and expand the District’s tree canopy.
  • $1 million to install new electric vehicle charging stations at District agencies.
  • $1.7 billion to support capital infrastructure upgrades for Metro.

Public Safety

The FY21 budget helps to build a safer, stronger DC by prioritizing violence prevention, supporting our first responders, and investing in connecting residents to the right care at the right time. FY21 public safety investments include:

  • $47 million in capital funds to upgrade critical building systems at the DC Jail.
  • $86 million in capital funds to purchase new emergency response vehicles.
  • $4.5 million in capital and operating funds to buy lifesaving cardiac equipment used by EMS personnel.
  • $200,000 for an enhanced consumer case management system at DCRA to improve code violation enforcement as recommended by the independent review of the 708 Kennedy Street Fire.
  • $300,000 to supplement existing Public Health Emergency Preparedness funds, enabling DFS to add a Medical Technologist and purchase additional equipment.

Homeward DC

In alignment with the Mayor’s strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness, Homeward DC, the FY21 budget provides:

  • $35 million to expand and renovate our permanent and temporary supportive housing.
  • $16.3 million in new local rent subsidy vouchers and affordable housing programming through the DC Housing Authority, including permanent supportive housing, targeted affordable housing, and the senior shallow subsidy.
  • $7.8 million to open new ward-based emergency family housing.

DC Values

The FY21 budget continues to promote and defend DC values with:

  • $2.5 million to continue the Immigrant Justice Legal Services grant program for the fifth year.
  • $1 million to continue the District’s path to statehood through education and engagement.
  • $904,000 to improve water quality in the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers by supporting stormwater infrastructure upgrades at more than 30 District-owned facilities.

Regulatory Changes

  • Effective October 1, 2020, the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) assumed regulatory authority for the District’s medical cannabis program, transitioning from under DC Health. During the transition period, patient and caregiver applications, healthcare practitioner medical cannabis recommendations, and all other standard service requests will continue to be processed uninterrupted.
  • Effective October 1, alcohol on premise sales are allowed to begin at 6:00 a.m. (previously 8:00 a.m.). Registered ABC licensees will be able to offer alcoholic beverages for carryout and delivery from 6:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. (previously 7:00 a.m. to midnight).