From ACLU of the District of Columbia <[email protected]>
Subject How the D.C. budget affects you
Date February 18, 2021 3:06 PM
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You can influence how the District spends your tax dollars

Friend –

The D.C. oversight and budget season has begun, and with it comes an opportunity for District residents to share priorities with D.C. leaders and voice concerns and recommendations about how our tax dollars are spent!

Are you eager to see alternatives to policing in D.C.? Are you concerned about racial disparities in our school system? Or maybe you want to see more being done to end the current housing crisis. Now is your opportunity to demand District leaders improve upon and invest in the programs that address these needs.

In February and March, the Council holds public hearings to review the performance of District agencies throughout the previous year. Once the Mayor releases her proposed budget for the District's next fiscal year in late March, the Council then holds hearings to review the Mayor's proposal for each agency. Finally, in May, the Council makes changes to the Mayor's proposed budget and votes to pass a new budget for the District's upcoming fiscal year into law.

Here's where you come in: the Council relies on District residents to give input on how agencies are performing, how services are working and not working, and your priorities for how D.C. should be spending its dollars. We – as in me, you, anyone – can do this by testifying at both performance and budget oversight hearings.

Maybe you've heard that a budget is a moral document. It's true! The way our government spends our public dollars reflects what we as a community value. It's therefore critical that we speak out to inform these decisions, and testifying is one important way to do this.

If you're ready to speak out, here's what you can do:

* Attend our February 20 Testimony Workshop <[link removed]> to learn to craft and deliver an effective testimony fit for any Council budget hearing or ANC meeting.

* Discover how the D.C. budget affects your community at our webinar "Why the D.C. Budget is a Big Deal," <[link removed]> on February 23.

* Head to the D.C. Council Website <[link removed]> to learn more about how and when you can testify.

* Follow us on Twitter <[link removed]> to stay up to date on the causes we're fighting for during this oversight season.

Remember – this is our D.C., our government, and our chance to raise our voices.

Let's get to work.

Monica Hopkins
Pronouns: She, her, hers
Executive Director, ACLU of the District of Columbia

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