Includes funds to improve DMV service, alleys, expand popular bikeshare program
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Councilmember Mary M. Cheh (D – Ward 3), Chair of the Committee on Transportation and the Environment, released her Committee’s proposed Fiscal Year 2014 budget, which would expand programs in the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), the Department of Public Works (DPW), the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and more.
“In addition to the various Ward 3 projects that I secured funding for in the proposed FY 2014 District budget, the Mayor provided a solid foundation for each of the agencies under my committee’s jurisdiction to operate next year,” said Councilmember Cheh. “My proposal today builds on that foundation by enhancing and expanding transportation, public works, and environmental programs to improve the quality of life for all District residents.”
As part of her Committee budget, Cheh has added $1.6 million in new capital funds to increase the FY 2014 alley reconstruction budget by 50 percent and to purchase more Capital Bikeshare stations.
“With this money, DDOT will have sorely needed additional resources to address alleyways in all eight Wards, many of which are in dire straits and require immediate attention,” said Cheh. “I have also allotted $400,000 for the installation new Capital Bikeshare stations, giving residents and visitors more convenience and choices as they move around the city.”
Cheh’s committee budget also proposes expanding the Circulator to the National Mall, U Street, and the neighborhoods surrounding Howard University. It would implement the Water Quality Assurance Act of 2012, and improve customer service at the Department of Motor Vehicles by hiring more hearing examiners to adjudicate tickets and opening a fourth DMV service center in Georgetown.
Other items in Cheh’s proposed Committee budget include:
- Assess sidewalk and alley conditions citywide for the first time since 2006;
- Make more D.C. taxicabs wheelchair accessible by providing $1.5 million in FY14 and FY15 in grants;
- Purchase seven new Circulator buses;
- Expand the Circulator to Glover Park, the National Cathedral, and the Southwest Waterfront by aligning Circulator fares with Metrobus fares effective July 1, 2014;
- Continue the Trial Ranger program and make it permanent;
- Hire two new air quality inspectors;
- Create incentives to enhance school-based recycling programs;
- Support Clean Teams to clean public space;
- Add 10 traffic control officers to improve safety;
- Increase public education on recycling;
- Double the frequency of household hazardous waste and e-cycling collections;
- Provide funds for recycling at all 71 Department of Parks and Recreation facilities; and
- Establish new capital projects to improve public space in performance parking zones and to improve efficiency of bus service.
Non-transportation programs supported by Cheh’s budget include:
- Provide $549,000 to expand the Washington Elderly and Handicapped Transportation Service for low-income seniors;
- Provide $501,000 in FY14 and $2.6 million over the four-year financial plan to increase Interim Disability Assistance;
- Provide $486,000 for permanent supportive housing for homeless seniors;
- Provide $486,000 to increase the number of shelter beds for LGBTQ homeless youth;
- Create a new Director for End Homelessness position within District government;
- Provide $50,000 to support the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) purchases of fresh fruits and vegetables at farmer’s markets; and
- Provide $52,000 to assist food banks in establishing food pantries for children at schools in low-income neighborhoods.