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Mayor Bowser Releases 2017 Accountability Report, 1/4/17

Mayor Bowser Releases 2017 Accountability Report, 1/4/17


>>THE BEST MAYOR IN THE COUNTRY
IS STANDING RIGHT ON THIS STAGE. [MUSIC]>>AND I LOVE THIS CITY. I LOVE THIS SENIOR CENTER. SHE HAS DONE A LOT FOR THIS
CENTER.>>AFFORDABLE HOUSING, TAX
REVENUE AND JOBS. IT IS RARE THAT WE GET PROJECTS
THAT HAVE ALL THREE. THIS IS ONE OF THOSE. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]
>>I WANT TO THANK THE MAYOR AND THE CITY FOR MAKING SUCH A STRONG INVESTMENT IN MARIE REED
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL LEADING THIS MODERNIZATION.>>THIS THE THING ABOUT THIS
SCHOOL IS ALL THE TEACHERS WHO SUPPORT ME TO BE WHO I AM TODAY.>>YOU KNOW, I TRULY BELIEVE
THAT I GOT A WONDERFUL EDUCATION HERE. AND EVERYONE MADE DO WITH WHAT
WAS AVAILABLE AT THAT TIME. THE CITY HAS MORE RESOURCES AND
THE INTEREST OF THE CITY HAS TAKEN IT TO THE SCHOOL. I’M HAPPY FOR THE KIDS. I’M HAPPY FOR THE TEACHERS THAT
WORK HERE. ANY TIME I’M HONORED BY THE
MAYOR, I’M GOING TO BE HAPPY ABOUT IT.>>THROUGH SYEP, I WAS ABLE TO
LAND AND INTERNSHIP AT WMATA AND LAUNCHED MY CAREER. SYEP HAS ENDLESS OPPORTUNITIES
FOR YOUNG PEOPLE LIKE MYSELF.>>SUCH HUGE SUPPORTERS OF THE
PIPER 15 CAMPAIGN.>>MAYOR: THE WHOLE POINT OF THE
INFRASTRUCTURE ACADEMY IS TO TRAIN D.C. RESIDENTS FOR THE
INFRASTRUCTURE JOBS THAT WE ARE CREATING.>>I’M A NATIVE WASHINGTONIAN.
YOU TAUGHT ME ABOUT HOW TO WORK IN THIS BUSINESS. THERE’S A FUTURE HERE. THERE’S A TRUE PATHWAY. IN THREE YEARS, A 20-YEAR-OLD
CAN PROBABLY BUY A HOME OFF THIS.>>THIS PROGRAM HAS BEEN A
BLESSING TO US BECAUSE IT ASSISTED US WITH OUR DOWN
PAYMENT AND HELPED US WITH OUR CLOSING COSTS TOWARDS OUR HOME. I’M JUST SO GRATEFUL FOR IT SO I
THANK THE MAYOR.>>WE APPLAUD THE MAYOR AND HER
ADMINISTRATION FOR PLACING FOCUS AND EMPHASIS ON THE DIRE NEED
FOR HOUSING.>>CAME HOME AFTER I HAD MY
FIRST CHILD AND I WAS JUST COUCH SURFING, GOING FROM HOUSE TO
HOUSE, HOUSE TO HOUSE. AND I THANK Y’ALL. [MUSIC]>>I THINK THE MAYOR IS A
CHAMPION. HER WILLINGNESS AND HER DESIRE
TO WANT EVERYONE IN WASHINGTON, D.C. TO SIGN UP FOR HEALTHCARE,
TO HAVE ACCESS TO HEALTHCARE IS DEMONSTRATIVE OF HER COMMITMENT
FOR EVERYBODY’S HEALTH AND WELL-BEING.>>MAYOR: HOW MANY DIFFERENT
PLANS I SEE. [MUSIC]>>MAYOR: PEOPLE WANT TO GET
FOCUSED ON THEIR FITNESS AND THEY WANT TO START THE NEW YEAR
OUT RIGHT. TODAY WE’RE GOING TO TALK TO YOU
ABOUT TWO TECHNOLOGIES, THE AED LINK. THE SECOND PIECE IS PULSE POINT. IT IS A SMARTPHONE APP THAT
ALERTS YOU IF SOMEONE GOES INTO CARDIAC ARREST NEAR YOU.>>THE ROBBERY PREVENTION TASK
FORCE HAS WORKED TO PREVENT REPEAT OFFENDERS. ROBBERIES ARE DOWN IN ALL EIGHT
WARDS.>>THE MAYOR IS DOING A GREAT
JOB NOW. THIS LIBRARY IS A MANIFESTATION
OF THE KIND OF WORK SHE’S BEEN DOING.>>MAYOR: WELCOME TO YOUR BIG
BUS TOUR OF WASHINGTON, D.C.>>THIS IS THE CAPITAL OF THE
WORLD. [MUSIC]>>WE ARE LIVE. WELCOME TO D.C. RADIO.>>MAYOR: AND MAYORS HAVE TO
STAND UP FOR IMMIGRATION RIGHTS! FOR REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS! FOR LGBTQ RIGHTS! I WANT TO WELCOME YOU ALL TO
YOUR NATION’S CAPITAL AND THE BEST CITY IN THE WORLD! [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]
[MUSIC] [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>>HELLO. IF YOU ARE AS EXCITED AS I AM, I
THINK YOU CAN DO BETTER THAN THAT. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE] GOOD EVENING. I’M BEVERLY PERRY. AND FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT DON’T
KNOW ME, I AM THE SENIOR ADVISOR TO THE MAYOR. BUT MY REAL GOAL IS D.C.
STATEHOOD. BUT THERE IS A WARRIOR FOR D.C.
STATEHOOD THAT FAR PRECEDES ME. AND SHE HAS A TV INTERVIEW. I WANT HER TO COME AND BRING
SOME GREETINGS BEFORE SHE LEAVES. OUR COUNCILWOMAN ELEANOR HOLMES
NORTON! BRING IT ON! [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>>OKAY, MAYOR. YOU DIDN’T TELL ME I WAS GOING
TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO SAY HAPPY NEW YEAR’S, 51st STATE. [LAUGHTER]
[APPLAUSE] MAYOR BOWSER, MEMBERS OF THE
COUNCIL, MEMBERS OF HER CABINET, HER PARENTS, I AM PLEASED TO BE
HERE FOR ANOTHER CELEBRATION OF WHAT THE MAYOR HAS ACCOMPLISHED
BECAUSE WHAT SHE’S ACCOMPLISHED SHE’S DONE FOR YOU AND ME. AND I APPRECIATE THE OPPORTUNITY
TO REMIND YOU THAT THERE IS ONE GREAT BIG ACCOMPLISHMENT STILL
TO BE DONE. AND TO THANK YOU BECAUSE EACH
YEAR WE HAVE INCREASED THE NUMBER OF CO-SPONSORS FOR THE
D.C. STATEHOOD BILL. THANK YOU, D.C. WE WILL GET THERE. [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD AFTERNOON, EVERYONE. OR EVENING I GUESS. MY NAME IS DAVID ALPERT AND I
RUN AN ORGANIZATION CALLED GREATER GREATER WASHINGTON WHICH
PUBLISHES A NEWS WEBSITE ABOUT MANY YEARS IN THE WASHINGTON
REGION, ESPECIALLY THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, ESPECIALLY AROUND
TRANSPORTATION, HOUSING AND OTHER PUBLIC POLICIES. WE ALSO ARE AN ADVOCACY
ORGANIZATION THAT ADVOCATES FOR ISSUES LIKE BETTER
TRANSPORTATION, MORE AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND SO FORTH FOR
EVERYONE IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. IN ADDITION, I AM ALSO IN CHARGE
OF AN ORGANIZATION CALLED D.C. SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORTATION WHICH
IS AN ALLIANCE OF BUSINESS ORGANIZATIONS, CIVIC
ORGANIZATIONS, ADVOCATES AND OTHERS TO IMPROVE TRANSPORTATION
FOR D.C. AND FOR THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE AND WORK HERE. WHAT WE ARE GOING TO BE DOING,
I’M GOING TO BE ASKING A FEW QUESTIONS OF TWO OF OUR
WONDERFUL LEADERS OF THE WASHINGTON, D.C. GOVERNMENT. AND THE FIRST ONE IS GOING TO BE
JEFF MAROOTIAN WHO IS FOR THE NEXT FIVE DAYS THE ACTING
DIRECTOR OF THE DISTRICT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION,
BECAUSE AFTER THOSE FIVE DAYS WE HOPE — BUT IT’S NOT TOO MUCH OF
A QUESTION THAT HE WILL BE THE PERMANENT DIRECTOR OF THE
DISTRICT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]
BUT BEFORE HE TALKS ABOUT ALL OF HIS ACCOMPLISHMENTS OR THE
ACCOMPLISHMENTS THAT ARE TO COME FOR HIS LEADERSHIP OF DDOT, I
ALSO WANTED TO JUST SORT OF SET THE STAGE A LITTLE BIT FOR SOME
OF WHAT WE ARE GOING TO BE NEEDING TO THINK ABOUT. AND AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE
DISTRICT IS GROWING RAPIDLY AND HAS BEEN FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS. THE LATEST CENSUS ESTIMATES SAY
WE ARE AT 693,000 PEOPLE OR ALMOST 700,000 PEOPLE. AND I THINK THAT’S REALLY
WONDERFUL BECAUSE I LOVE THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. I LOVE LIVING HERE. I’M REALLY HAPPY TO BE A PART OF
IT. AND I THINK THAT ONE OF THE MOST
IMPORTANT THINGS THAT WE NEED TO DO IS MAKE SURE THAT EVERYBODY
CAN BE A PART OF IT, WHETHER THEY ALREADY HAVE LIVED HERE FOR
A LONG TIME OR ARE NEW TO THE DISTRICT OR, AS MAYOR BOWSER
SAID AND HAS SAID MANY TIMES, WHETHER PEOPLE HAVE BEEN HERE
FOR FIVE GENERATIONS OR FIVE MINUTES. WHEN SHE FIRST TALKED ABOUT THAT
IN THE CAMPAIGN, I FOUND THAT TO BE VERY INSPIRING AND I REALLY
LOVED HEARING THAT BECAUSE IT REALLY WAS, I FELT, A COMPELLING
CONCEPT THAT OUR GOAL NEEDS TO BE TO CREATE A DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA THAT REALLY IS WELCOMING OF EVERYONE, THAT CAN
ALLOW ALL OF THE PEOPLE THAT ARE COMING HERE TO BE A PART OF IT,
AND THE PEOPLE THAT ARE ALREADY HERE TO CONTINUE TO BE A PART OF
IT AND GROW THE PROSPERITY AND ALL THE SUCCESS THAT WE HAVE
HAD. SO I’M GOING TO BE TALKING ABOUT
THAT VERY BRIEFLY WITH DIRECTOR MAROOTIAN AND DIRECTOR TOMMY
WELLS OF THE DIRECTOR OF ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT. WHY DON’T WE HEAR FROM DIRECTOR
MAROOTIAN?>>THANK YOU SO MUCH, DAVID.
IT’S GREAT TO BE HERE WITH ALL OF YOU. I’M GOING TO TALK BRIEFLY ABOUT
SOME OF OUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF DDOT OVER THE LAST SEVERAL
YEARS. UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF THE
MAYOR, WE FOCUSED ON BRINGING THE AGENCY BACK TO BASICS. WE HAVE HAD SUCCESSFULLY UNDER
THE MAYOR’S ALLEY PALOOZA PROGRAM, FOR EXAMPLE, REPAVED
CLOSE TO 300 ALLEYS, MORE THAN TRIPLED OUR CAPACITY TO PAVE
LOCAL STREETS. AND WE’RE GEARING UP TO DO EVEN
MORE THIS SPRING. ALONG WITH MY COLLEAGUE TOMMY
WELLS AND HIS AGENCY DOEE, WE HAVE INITIATED SEVERAL GREEN
INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS, ALL WITH THE GOAL OF INCREASING
SUSTAINABILITY AND IMPROVING SAFETY FOR OUR COMMUNITY ACROSS
ALL EIGHT WARDS OF THE CITY. IN AUGUST THE MAYOR MADE A BOLD
ANNOUNCEMENT WITH THE COMMITMENT OF $30 MILLION TO UPGRADE OUR
CIRCULATOR BUS FLEET. WE HAVE MORE THAN HALF OF THOSE
CIRCULATOR BUSES IN OPERATION NOW AND OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL
MONTHS WE’LL BE GETTING 14 ELECTRIC BUSES INTO OUR FLEET. THE IMPLICATIONS OF THAT FOR US
ARE QUITE LARGE. IN ADDITION TO IMPROVING THE
SAFETY AND RELIABILITY OF THE CIRCULATOR SYSTEM, WE ALSO ARE
REDUCING THE EMISSIONS. IN THE CASES OF ELECTRIC BUSES,
BRINGING THEM DOWN TO ZERO EMISSIONS WITH THE HUGE BASKET
OF THE SUSTAINABILITY OF OUR CITY. WE ARE ALSO WORKING ON SEVERAL
OTHER BIG TECHNOLOGY PROJECTS, BIG IDEAS THAT WILL MAKE OUR
CITY SAFER AND WILL CONTINUE TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY AND HEALTH
OF OUR ENVIRONMENT. WE ARE WORKING NOW WITH OUR
COLLEAGUES IN THE OFFICE OF PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS ON
AN EFFORT TO UPGRADE ALL OF THE STREET LIGHTS THROUGHOUT THE
CITY TO L.E.D. LIGHTS. AND THE IMPLICATIONS OF THAT FOR
SAFETY AND FOR ENVIRONMENTAL EMISSIONS ARE QUITE LARGE. AND SO THOSE ARE THE KINDS OF
INITIATIVES AND EFFORTS THAT WE HAVE WORKED ON AND WILL CONTINUE
TO WORK ON UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF MAYOR BOWSER.>>GREAT. THANK YOU. FIRST THING TO MAYBE BUILD ON
WHAT I WAS SAYING A MOMENT AGO, AS THE DISTRICT IS GROWING, ONE
OF THE CHALLENGES IS THAT THE AMOUNT OF LAND IS NOT GROWING
AND THE AMOUNT OF LAND THAT’S AVAILABLE FOR TRANSPORTATION USE
ISN’T PARTICULARLY GROWING EITHER. SO WE HAVE A CHALLENGE THAT, YOU
KNOW, THERE AREN’T GOING TO BE NEW BIG HIGHWAYS BECAUSE AMONG
OTHER REASONS, THERE ISN’T SOMEWHERE THEY WOULD GO. AND WE HAVE TO MAKE BEST USE OF
MANY OF THE RESOURCES THAT WE HAVE LIKE METRO, WHICH, AS
EVERYONE IS AWARE, IS SOMETHING THAT STRUGGLES. DOING MORE WITH BUSES. AND SIGNAL TIMINGS SO PEOPLE
WON’T BE STUCK IN TRAFFIC. CAN YOU TALK ABOUT HOW DDOT IS
BALANCING THESE ISSUES?>>ABSOLUTELY. WE HAVE REALLY BEEN THINKING
CREATIVELY ABOUT HOW WE PLAN FOR AND HOW WE THINK ABOUT THOSE
DYNAMICS THAT YOU JUST DESCRIBED. ONE OF THE THINGS WE HAVE DONE
IS RELY ON TECHNOLOGY TO REDUCE CONGESTION, TO MOVE PEOPLE
THROUGHOUT THE CITY MORE QUICKLY. WE HAVE LAUNCHED A VERY
SUCCESSFUL PILOT PROGRAM THIS PAST FALL TO BETTER MANAGE THE
CURBSIDE SPACE WHERE WE HAVE DONE A DEMONSTRATION PERIOD
WHERE WE HAVE ALLOWED FOR A PICKUP AND DROP-OFF OF RIDE
SHARING VEHICLES, FOR EXAMPLE, WHICH HAS MADE THE OPERATIONS OF
TRAFFIC IN ONE SPECIFIC AREA IN DuPONT CIRCLE WHERE WE ARE
TESTING THIS EFFORT SAFER AND MORE EFFICIENT. WE HAVE REDUCED CONGESTION AND
MADE IT SAFER FOR PEDESTRIANS. THOSE ARE THE KINDS OF THINGS WE
ARE DOING TO THINK A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY. AS YOU SAID, WE CAN’T WIDEN OUR
HIGHWAY SYSTEM. WE CAN’T WIDEN OUR ROADS SO WE
HAVE TO THINK OF WAYS TO USE TECHNOLOGY. WE HAVE OPTIMIZED OUR TRAFFIC
SIGNALS, MAKING IT EASIER FOR BOTH MOTORISTS AND CYCLISTS AND
PEDESTRIANS TO GET AROUND THE CITY MORE SAFELY AND MORE
EFFICIENTLY. I SHOULD ALSO MENTION THAT IN
DOING THAT SIGNAL OPTIMIZATION, WE HAVE ACTUALLY SEEN A 10%
REDUCTION IN CARBON EMISSIONS AS A RESULT. WE ARE LOOKING FOR THOSE
OPPORTUNITIES TO BALANCE BOTH SAFETY AND SUSTAINABILITY
EFFORTS.>>FANTASTIC. YOU HAD MENTIONED A FEW TIMES
SAFETY. AND, OF COURSE, PEOPLE BEING,
YOU KNOW, SAFE TO USE OUR ROADS AND ALL THE MODES THAT THEY
MIGHT BE TAKING, WHETHER THEY ARE DRIVING, BICYCLING, WALKING,
USING A SCOOTER, YOU KNOW, ETC. ARE PARAMOUNT. I KNOW A BIG FOCUS FOR DDOT HAS
BEEN ON THE VISION ZERO PROGRAM TO REDUCE OR GET TO ZERO THE
NUMBER OF FATALITIES. CAN YOU TALK ABOUT SPECIFICALLY
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR THE TYPICAL RESIDENT IN THE
DISTRICT?>>SURE. VISION ZERO IS A COMPREHENSIVE
STRATEGY TO ELIMINATE TRAFFIC FATALITIES AND SERIOUS INJURIES
BY 2024. WHAT WE HAVE DONE IS FOCUS ON
REALLY THREE COMPONENTS. PUBLIC EDUCATION BEING ONE OF
THOSE COMPONENTS. ENFORCEMENT BEING AN IMPORTANT
ONE. AND THEN ENGINEERING SOLUTIONS.
LOOKING AT HIGH CRASH INTERSECTIONS, PLACES THAT WE
HAVE SEEN A TENDENCY FOR PROBLEMATIC INTERACTIONS BETWEEN
DRIVERS AND PEDESTRIANS AND CYCLISTS. AND APPLIED ENGINEERING
SOLUTIONS TO TRY TO SOLVE FOR THOSE. WE HAVE A TEAM THAT GOES OUT ON
A REGULAR BASIS TO DO ASSESSMENTS OF SOME OF THESE
LOCATIONS, MAKE QUICK RECOMMENDATIONS ABOUT HOW TO FIX
AND MODIFY THOSE LOCATIONS. AND THAT’S SOMETHING THAT WE
HAVE SEEN A LOT OF SUCCESS IN DOING AND WE ARE GOING TO
CONTINUE TO LOOK AT THOSE KINDS OF LOCATIONS AS WE GO FORWARD.
>>THAT’S GREAT. I REALLY APPRECIATE THE MAYOR’S
COMMITMENT AND YOUR COMMITMENT TO SETTING THIS IMPORTANT GOAL
BECAUSE NO ONE SHOULD DIE ON A ROADWAY. AND IT’S FANTASTIC THE CITY HAS
MADE THAT COMMITMENT. ONE OF THE LESS KNOWN THINGS
ABOUT DDOT, AND PEOPLE ARE LESS AWARE THAT DDOT IS RESPONSIBLE
FOR IS TREES, WHICH ARE IN THE SPACE BETWEEN — OFTEN BETWEEN
THE SPACE OF THE SIDEWALK AND THE ROADWAY SO THEY ARE IN
DDOT’S PURVIEW. MOST PEOPLE THINK OF DDOT OF
CARS AND BIKES AND TRAINS AGENCY. SO HOW IS DDOT HELPING ACHIEVE
SOME OF THE MAYOR’S EMISSION GOALS ABOUT THE TREE CANOPY AND
SO FORTH IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA?>>I’M VERY PROUD TO REPORT,
DAVID, DURING THIS ADMINISTRATION, WE HAVE
SIGNIFICANTLY ENHANCED OUR TREE PLANTING PROGRAM. THIS SEASON ALONE, BETWEEN
OCTOBER AND APRIL, WE SET THE AMBITIOUS GOAL OF PLANTING 8,000
TREES. I’M EXCITED TO REPORT THAT WE
ARE MORE THAN HALFWAY THROUGH THAT PLANTING CYCLE AND WE ARE
WELL OVER HALFWAY THROUGH PLANTING THOSE AND WE ARE
CONFIDENT THAT WE ARE GOING TO GET TO THAT 8,000. OVER THE PAST TWO YEARS, FOR
EVERY ONE TREE THAT WE HAVE REMOVED, WE HAVE PLANTED FOUR
NEW TREES. AND SO THAT’S ACROSS ALL EIGHT
WORDS OF THE CITY. [APPLAUSE] THAT DOES DESERVE A ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. SEVERAL MONTHS AGO THE MAYOR
ALSO ANNOUNCED SOME NEW TECHNOLOGY THAT WE HAVE DEPLOYED
FOR OUR RESIDENTS TO HELP BETTER ENGAGE WITH THE PUBLIC. WE ANNOUNCED A TREE WATERING APP
THAT RESIDENTS CAN USE ON THEIR PHONE TO HELP US — REALLY TO
KNOW WHERE THERE ARE TREES THAT NEED HELP, THAT NEED TO BE
WATERED AND TO REALLY GIVE OUR MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC AND THE
COMMUNITY A SENSE OF REAL PRIDE IN KNOWING THAT THEIR TREES ARE
BEING WELL CARED FOR AND WELL MAINTAINED FOR OUR CITY. SO WE ARE AGGRESSIVELY PLANTING
AND MAKING SURE THAT THE HEALTH AND VITALITY OF OUR TREES STAYS
AS GOOD AS POSSIBLE.>>FANTASTIC. WELL, THANK YOU, JEFF MAROOTIAN.
AND I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU BE ABLE TO DROP THE ACTING FROM
YOUR TITLE IN A FEW DAYS.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE]>>SO WITH THAT LITTLE SHIFT,
WE’RE NOW GOING TO HEAR FROM ANOTHER ONE OF THE LEADERS OF
DISTRICT AGENCIES, TOMMY WELLS, WHO IS THE HEAD OF THE
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AND THE ENVIRONMENT. AND FORMERLY WARD 6
COUNCILMEMBER, TOMMY, WELCOME. WHY DON’T YOU TALK A LITTLE BIT
ABOUT WHAT YOU HAVE BEEN DOING?>>THANK YOU, DAVID. AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR
LEADERSHIP. GREATER GREATER WASHINGTON HAS
REALLY BECOME A RESPECTED JOURNAL THAT I KNOW THAT WE ALL
READ AND LOOK FOR. AND WE ALSO REALLY LIKE IT WHEN
YOU WRITE GOOD THINGS ABOUT US. [LAUGHTER] SO THAT’S VERY IMPORTANT TO US. GOOD TO SEE YOU, MAYOR. AND IT’S GREAT TO SEE OUR
COUNCILWOMAN. WE HAVE HAD AN AMAZING YEAR. THE THREE YEARS THAT WE HAVE
WORKED TOGETHER TO MAKE D.C. A SUSTAINABLE CITY HAS BEEN
EXTRAORDINARY. THE FACT THAT WE ARE THE FIRST
CITY IN THE WORLD TO BE DESIGNATED AS A LEED PLATINUM
CITY, THE FIRST ONE IN THE WORLD IS EXTRAORDINARY. [APPLAUSE] BUT IT’S NOT MY AGENCY THAT DID
IT. IT’S YOU THAT DID IT. THE DEPARTMENT OF GOVERNMENT
SERVICES WITH ALL THE WORK THAT YOU HAVE BEEN DOING AROUND
ENERGY, FOR OUR CITY, FOR OUR BUILDINGS. DDOT, YOU JUST HEARD FROM JEFF
TALKING ABOUT THE INCREDIBLE — THEY HAVE BEEN DOING ABOUT
11,000 TREES A YEAR. HE DIDN’T SAY THAT. HE’S LOOKING AT THIS YEAR, BUT
THEY HAVE BEEN DOING AN AMAZING YEAR OF RETROFITTING THE PUBLIC
SPACE OF OUR CITY TO ABSORB RAIN WATER. OFFICE OF PLANNING, THE WORK
THEY HAVE BEEN DOING AROUND NUTRITION AND FOOD AND
SUSTAINABILITY HAS BEEN EXTRAORDINARY. DCRA HAS BEEN A GREAT PARTNER IN
SEEING THAT OUR BUILDINGS ARE GREEN. YOU KNOW, WE NOW HAVE MORE
ENERGY STAR BUILDINGS IN THE D.C. AREA — WHEN WE STARTED,
MAYOR, WE WERE SIX BEHIND L.A. FOR THE PAST TWO YEARS, WE HAVE
BEEN NUMBER ONE IN THE NATION. AND THAT IS A GREAT
ACCOMPLISHMENT. [APPLAUSE] WE HAVE MORE GREEN ROOFS GOING
ON THE PAST THREE YEARS THAN ANY OTHER CITY IN THE COUNTRY. GREEN ROOFS MEAN WE GET A COOLER
CITY, A HEALTHIER CITY AND ACTUALLY NEW HABITAT FOR BIRDS
AND OTHER PLANTS IN OUR CITY. SO THAT HAS BEEN A REMARKABLE
ACHIEVEMENT THAT YOU HAVE DONE. OCTO PROVIDED THE LEAD ON
GETTING OUR APPLICATION IN. BUT ALL OF YOU, THAT IS AN AWARD
THAT COULD NOT BE DONE BY ONE AGENCY ALONG. DPW, ALL OF YOU HAVE DONE AN
AMAZING JOB. AND DMPED, OF COURSE, AND SEEING
THAT OUR BUILDINGS ARE BUILT TO STANDARD THAT WE CAN BE PROUD OF
AND WORKING WITH OUR DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY. BUT NOW THIS YEAR THAT WE ARE IN
NOW, 2018 IS THE YEAR OF THE ANACOSTIA RIVER. NOW, WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? THAT MEANS ALL THE WORK THAT WE
HAVE BEEN WORKING ON, A LOT OF THAT IS GOING TO BE HIGHLIGHTED
IN THIS COMING YEAR. AND SO OUR MAYOR STARTED THE
VERY FIRST DAY OF 2018 OUT IN THAT CHILLY COLD WITH THE FRESH
START 5K RUN. [APPLAUSE] SO OUR MAYOR LEADING THE WAY.
MAKING THIS THE YEAR OF THE ANACOSTIA. THE COMBINED SEWER OVERFLOW FOR
THE ANACOSTIA RIVER, THAT’S, YOU KNOW, MILES AND MILES OF TUNNEL
UNDERNEATH OUR RIVERS. AND IT’S DOWN 100 FEET AND IT’S
GOING TO BE LIKE A MAJOR RAIN BARREL. IT WILL REALLY HANDLE ALMOST 98%
OF ALL THE OVERFLOW EVENTS FOR THE CITY. IT’S GOING TO BE CLEANER, IT’S
GOING TO BE FISHABLE. IT’S GOING TO BE SWIMMABLE.
WE HAVE RETROFITTED ALMOST EVERY SINGLE STREAM IN THE CITY THAT’S
NOT ON PARKLAND SO THAT IT DOES WHAT NATURE INTENDS FOR IT TO
DO. ABSORB THE NUTRIENTS, ABSORB THE
RUNOFF BEFORE IT GETS IN THE WATER STREAM. WE HAVE MADE PROGRESS. AND I WOULD SAY AFTER WE HAVE
TESTED THE FISH — WHICH WE DO EVERY THREE TO FIVE YEARS, THE
ANACOSTIA IS CLEANER THAN IT’S BEEN IN 50 YEARS. [APPLAUSE] AND THAT AGAIN IS A TESTAMENT OF
OUR TAXPAYERS INVESTING IN THE INFRASTRUCTURE THAT WE NEED IN
ORDER TO CLEAN OUR RIVERS. BUT THEN ALSO THE NEXT MAJOR
INVESTMENTS AND SOMETHING I’M VERY EXCITED ABOUT IS OUR SOLAR
DEPLOYMENT IN THE CITY. WE HAVE IN THE MIDST OF
IMPLEMENTING THE LARGEST SOLAR DEPLOYMENT IN THE COUNTRY TO
BENEFIT SOLELY LOW-INCOME RESIDENTS. SOLAR IN THE PAST HAS BEEN
VIEWED AS APPLIANCES ON PEOPLE’S ROOFS FOR THE WEALTHIER AND
HIGHER INCOME FOLKS. WHAT WE ARE DOING IS MANDATED
AND WE ARE FIGURING OUT HOW DO YOU TAKE A CITY THAT’S ALREADY
BUILT OUT, FIND PLACES TO PUT SOLAR POWER AND THEN REDEPLOY
THOSE BENEFITS TO LOW-INCOME RESIDENTS. AND WE’RE GOING TO HEAR FROM
SOMEONE IN A MOMENT AFTER DAVID AND I TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT
WHAT THAT MEANS TO OUR CITY. IT’S NOT JUST THAT WE’RE GOING
TO ACHIEVE THE GOAL OF 5% OF ALL OUR POWER COMING FROM SORRY
WITHIN THE DISTRICT, IT MEANS A LOT MORE THAN THAT. AND I’LL TALK A LITTLE BIT MORE
ABOUT THAT IN A MOMENT. AGAIN, DAVID, THANK YOU FOR
BEING OUR MERV GRIFFIN. THANKS FOR BEING HERE. THAT DATED ME, DIDN’T IT?
SORRY.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH, DIRECTOR
WELLS. THE MAYOR HAS AMONG OTHER THINGS
EMBRACED AND ADVANCED THE DISTRICT’S AGGRESSIVE
SUSTAINABILITY GOALS. [INAUDIBLE] OKAY, ALL RIGHT. AND A BIG PART OF THAT IS HAVING
A WRITTEN PLAN FOR WHAT ARE OUR TARGETS AND WHAT ARE WE GOING TO
DO TO ACHIEVE SUSTAINABILITY, CALLED THE SUSTAINABLE D.C.
PLAN. AND YOUR AGENCY IS CURRENTLY IN
THE PROCESS OF CREATING THE SECOND VERSION OF THAT PLAN. CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE BIT
ABOUT HOW THAT’S GOING AND WHAT PEOPLE SHOULD LOOK FOR IN THE
NEW PLAN?>>WELL, THE SUSTAINABLE D.C.
PLAN WHICH ENGAGES ALL OF US IS OUR ROADMAP TO BECOMING A
SUSTAINABLE CITY. AND THE FIRST THING THE MAYOR
DID IS TAKE THE WORK THAT HAD BEEN DONE AND SAY WE’RE GOING TO
OWN THIS PLAN, WE’RE GOING TO IMPLEMENT THE PLAN. AND NOW WE’RE AT A POINT TO
WHERE WE’RE READY FOR VERSION 2.0. WHAT WE ARE DOING THIS TIME
DIFFERENT THAN LAST TIME — IT’S NOT A CRITICISM, IT’S JUST WHAT
HAPPENED. THIS TIME THE MAYOR HAS REALLY
PUSHED FOR ENGAGING MORE CITY RESIDENTS FROM EVERY — WELL,
ALL EIGHT WARDS TO BE INVOLVED IN DESIGNING THIS PLAN. SO THERE’S GREATER CITY
OWNERSHIP ON WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A SUSTAINABLE CITY. SO I KNOW THAT YOU HAVE REVIEWED
THE PLAN. I KNOW THAT WE HAVE ACCOMPLISHED
QUITE A BIT OF THE PLAN BUT WE HAVE A LOT MORE WORK TO DO.
AND AGAIN, IT’S THE ROADMAP FOR ALL OF US FOR BEING A
SUSTAINABLE CITY.>>TERRIFIC. ONE OF THE OTHER GOALS THE MAYOR
HAS SET OUT IS FOR THE DISTRICT TO BECOME CARBON NEUTRAL BY 2050
WHICH IS A BOLD GOAL THAT HELPS US ACHIEVE THE SORTS OF AIMS OF
THE PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT THAT OTHER LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT THAT
ARE LOCATED IN THE CITY BUT DON’T CARE ABOUT IT SO MUCH HAVE
STEPPED AWAY FROM. SO CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE BIT
ABOUT WHAT YOUR AGENCY AND THE DISTRICT ARE DOING TO REACH THAT
TARGET?>>WELL, THAT GETS TO REALLY A
VERY SERIOUS SUBJECT THAT WE KNOW THAT CLIMATE CHANGE IS
REAL. WE KNOW THAT WE ARE IN THIS BOMB
TYPHOON VORTEX, WHATEVER THEY ARE CALLING IT RIGHT NOW. WE ARE HAVING ONE OF THE MOST
EXTENDED PERIODS OF COLD THAT WE HAVE HAD IN MANY YEARS. AND THAT’S ON TOP OF HAVING THE
WARMEST THREE YEARS IN THE HISTORY OF KEEPING RECORDS OVER
THE PAST THREE YEARS. WE ARE IN THE MIDST OF CLIMATE
CHANGE. IT WILL HAVE AN IMPACT ON THE
VIABILITY OF OUR CITY. IT WILL HAVE AN IMPACT ON OUR
ECONOMY AND OUR RESIDENTS IN DRAMATIC WAYS. AND SO ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE
HAVE DONE IS THAT WE HAVE A CHIEF RESILIENCY OFFICER, KEVIN
BUSH BROUGHT ON TO WORK IN THE CITY ADMINISTRATOR’S OFFICE TO
SEE THAT THE CITY IS RESILIENT. BUT THE OTHER THING IS — THIS
IS AGAIN ON A MORE SERIOUS NOTE. WE DON’T HAVE A FEDERAL PARTNER
ANY MORE. THAT’S ALMOST UNTHINKABLE THAT
WE DON’T HAVE A FEDERAL PARTNER IN FIGURING OUT HOW WE’RE GOING
TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGE AND HOW WE’RE GOING TO RETROFIT THE
BUILT ENVIRONMENT OF OUR WHOLE COUNTRY SO THAT WE CAN BE MORE
ACCOUNTABLE IN REDUCING GREENHOUSE GASES. AND SO IN THAT VOID, THE MAYOR
HAS HAD TO STEP UP AND BE A LEADER. AND, YOU KNOW, I’LL NEVER
FORGET, WE WENT DOWN TO MEXICO CITY. THE MAYOR BROUGHT US ALONG WITH
REALLY LEADING A TEAM OF OTHER MAYORS FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY
TO TELL THE MAYORS ACROSS THE WORLD THAT ONE ELECTION DOES NOT
CHANGE OUR VALUES. THAT WE ARE STILL IN IT. 70% OF ALL GREENHOUSE GASES ARE
DUE TO CITIES. CITIES ARE THE PROBLEMS. CITIES ARE THE SOLUTION. AND SO HAVE OUR MAYOR STEP UP
RIGHT AWAY BECAUSE WE’RE THE NATION’S CAPITAL AND SPEAK THAT
TO THE REST OF THE MAYORS ACROSS THE WORLD MEANS WE HAVE A LOT OF
WORK TO DO TO BACK THE MAYOR UP. BUT AGAIN, I COULDN’T HAVE BEEN
MORE PROUD AND I COULDN’T HAVE DECIDED THAT MY JOB WHERE I’M AT
TODAY COULD NOT BE MORE IMPORTANT. AND SO WITH THAT, WE HAVE A LOT
OF WORK TO DO.>>SOUNDS GOOD. AND, OF COURSE, THE EXTREMELY
DESTRUCTIVE HURRICANE SEASON THAT WE JUST HAD TO SUFFER
THROUGH AND ESPECIALLY MANY FOLKS IN THE ISLANDS IN THE
CARIBBEAN HAD TO SUFFER THROUGH, YOU KNOW, JUST GIVES ADDITIONAL
WEIGHT TO THE HUMAN TOLL, YOU KNOW, THAT CLIMATE CHANGE IS
ALREADY BRINGING. AND UNFORTUNATELY, WILL PERHAPS
MAY IN THE FUTURE IF WE DON’T TAKE DECISIVE ACTION. THANK YOU FOR DOING THAT. I THINK WE’LL BE HEARING NOW
FROM ANOTHER PERSON.>>THANK YOU, DAVID. SO NEXT I’M GOING TO INTRODUCE
YOU TO SOMEONE. BUT BEFORE I DO, I REMEMBER
THERE WAS A TIME WHEN I DIDN’T WORK FOR OUR MAYOR. AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT OUR
MAYOR TALKED ABOUT WHEN SHE TALKED ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT ON
THE CAMPAIGN, SHE SAID YOU KNOW WHAT, WHAT’S GOOD FOR THE
ENVIRONMENT IS GOOD FOR THE ECONOMY. AND SO AS WE HAVE THIS PROGRAM
TO DEPLOY SOLAR POWER, I THINK THAT WHEN THE MAYOR TALKS ABOUT
A PATHWAY TO THE MIDDLE CLASS, WE COULD NOT HAVE A BETTER
EXAMPLE OF ONE OF OUR CITY’S RESIDENTS THAT HAS TAKEN
ADVANTAGE OF WHAT THE CITY HAS OFFERED TO JOIN THE RANKS OF
REALLY THE FASTEST GROWING JOB AREA IN THE COUNTRY. AND AGAIN, WHAT’S GOOD FOR THE
ENVIRONMENT IS GOOD FOR BUSINESS. IN FACT, WE HAVE GONE OVER THE
PAST FIVE YEARS FROM TWO OR THREE BUSINESSES INVOLVED IN
SOLAR DEPLOYMENT TO OVER 40 THAT NOW HAVE SOMETHING TO DO WITH
SOLAR DEPLOYMENT. I WANT TO INTRODUCE YOU TO A
REMARKABLE WASHINGTONIAN. MANY OF YOU KNOW HER. SHE HAS BEEN RECENTLY FEATURED
ON BBC AND I COULD NOT BE MORE INSPIRED OR PROUD OF SHARON
WEISS.>>THANK YOU SO MUCH, TOMMY. [APPLAUSE] IT’S JUST AN INCREDIBLE
OPPORTUNITY TO BE HERE. ME AND TOMMY HAVE HISTORY,
ESPECIALLY WORKING IN THE ENVIRONMENT WHICH WASN’T A LEAP
FOR ME ONCE I FOUND OUT ABOUT WHAT THE MAYOR WAS DOING AROUND
THE SOLAR FOR ALL PROGRAM. I USED TO LIVE UNDER A BRIDGE
AND THAT WAS MY FIRST INTRODUCTION TO THE ENVIRONMENT
REALLY. AT 9 YEARS OLD I WAS RUNNING
AWAY. SO BY THE TIME I GOT FROM
CHICAGO AND TO D.C. WHERE MY LIFE BEGAN TO CHANGE, I ACTUALLY
HIT EVERY PROGRAM IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. YOU KNOW, FROM MPD TO DBH TO
APRA, EVENTUALLY ENDED UP AT D.O.E.S. YOU KNOW, AND GOT
INVOLVED WITH G-R-I-D, YOU KNOW. AND NOW HOPEFULLY WHATEVER HAS
HAPPENED IN THE SOLAR FOR ALL PROGRAM CAN HELP ME CHANGE THE
FUTURE. THE MAYOR’S GOAL WITH THE
10 KILOWATTS OF SOLAR POWER, I GOT ON THAT ROOF AND I’M TELLING
YOU FOUR MONTHS AGO I WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ABLE TO PASS YOU, SAY,
A B OR A CLAMP OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT. BUT THE THINGS THAT I LEARNED
THERE AT SOLAR FOR ALL, IT HAS REALLY CHANGED MY LIFE. IT MADE ME LOOK AT SOLAR
DIFFERENTLY. I HAD NEVER SAW A SOLAR PANEL. AND WITHIN ONE WEEK OF BEING IN
THAT PROGRAM, THEY HAD US TRAINED FOR HARNESSES. THEY HAD US TRAINED FOR SAFETY. WE WERE GETTING OUR OSHA
TRAINING. WE WERE GETTING OUR FIRST AID
TRAINING. SO I SEE HOW MY LIFE GOING UNDER
THAT BRIDGE TO A HIGHER LEVEL OF CONSCIOUSNESS IS JUST REALLY
MOVING ME INTO THE MIDDLE CLASS. AND I KNOW THAT’S PART OF SOME
OF THE MAYOR’S GOAL. I’M REALLY GLAD TO BE HERE,
TOMMY, MAINLY BECAUSE OF WHAT’S HAPPENING OVER AT THE ANACOSTIA
RIVER. SOME OF YOU ALL MAY KNOW
ANACOSTIA MEANS ANOKA. AND ANOKA MEANS TRADING VILLAGE. WITH THE 100th ANNIVERSARY OF
ANACOSTIA PARK, I SEE SO MUCH HAPPENING OVER THERE. I LIVE IN ANACOSTIA. [APPLAUSE] SO I’M LOOKING FORWARD AS A
WARD 8 RESIDENT — I WAS OUT THERE WITH THE MAYOR
ON THE 1st OF JANUARY RUNNING IN THE COLD. BUT I SAID IF SHE CAN RUN FOR
THE PEOPLE, I’M RUNNING WITH HER, YOU KNOW. [APPLAUSE] SO I JUST LOOK FORWARD TO ANYONE
WHO HAS QUESTIONS. BECAUSE WE ONLY HAVE A CERTAIN
AMOUNT OF TIME. BUT I WOULD LOOK FORWARD TO
ANSWERING QUESTIONS AFTERWARDS ABOUT WHAT SOLAR FOR ALL IS
DOING AND THE FACT THAT SHE PUT THAT IN THERE — I WAS A PART OF
THE INAUGURAL CLASS. THAT WAS THE FIRST 12-WEEK CLASS
THAT GRID GRADUATED. AND IT WAS ONLY MADE POSSIBLE
BECAUSE OUR MAYBE GOT CREATIVE AND SAID, LOOK, IF THESE PEOPLE
GET TRAINED, HELP ME GET THAT 10 KILOWATTS OF SOLAR POWER,
THEY WILL GET JOBS. THEY WILL BECOME TAXPAYERS. AND THAT’S WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT. [APPLAUSE]>>NOW, AS MS. WISE SAID, SHE
TOOK ADVANTAGE OF AN EXTRAORDINARY NEW PARTNERSHIP
BETWEEN D.O.E.S. AND DOEE, REALIZING THAT THESE FUNDS ARE
NOT JUST TO PUT SOLAR PANELS ON TOP OF BUILDINGS, BUT IT’S ALSO
A WAY TO INVEST IN OUR RESIDENTS AS WELL WHAT IS IT ABOUT, YOU KNOW —
THIS COULD BE A FOREIGN CONCEPT GETTING INVOLVED IN SOLAR POWER
AND THEN SEEING A CAREER IN THAT. WHAT DREW YOU TO THAT?>>WHAT DREW ME TO THAT IS THE
FACT THAT LIVING UNDER A BRIDGE — SOME PEOPLE MAY NOT
CONCEPTUALIZE IT, ESPECIALLY THINKING ABOUT IT’S SO COLD
OUTSIDE. SOME OF US MAY HAVE RODE PAST
HOMELESS PEOPLE. I WANTED TO BE OUT THERE. I DIDN’T WANT TO BE RESPONSIBLE
FOR BILLS. I HAD LOST PARENTAL RIGHTS TO MY
CHILDREN. A LOT OF THINGS HAPPENED IN MY
LIFE DUE TO NO FAULT OF MY OWN. IT’S TOO LONG A STORY TO TALK
ABOUT TRAUMA HERE. BUT WHAT I DO WANT TO SAY,
BECAUSE OF WHAT HAPPENED TO ME, A LOT OF THINGS ENDED UP
HAPPENING FOR ME. AND MOST OF IT WAS GETTING
INVOLVED WITH THE DISTRICT PROGRAMS. THEY CAN’T DO IT BY THEMSELVES. WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING, TOO. DISTRICT RESIDENTS HAVE TO STEP
UP AND SAY WAIT A MINUTE, IF THEY ARE GIVING ME 50 CENTS AND
I PUT IN 50 CENTS, I HAVE $1, YOU KNOW. SO GETTING INVOLVED WITH THE
SOLAR INDUSTRY, I HAVE ALWAYS LOVED THE ENVIRONMENT, YOU KNOW. I DON’T HAVE A JOB IN THE SOLAR
INDUSTRY RIGHT NOW, BUT I AM LOOKING FOR ONE. I’M LOOKING TO GET INVOLVED WITH
THE ENVIRONMENT. THAT’S WHAT I WANT TO DO — AS
AN ARTIST, I FIND DRIFTWOOD IN THE ANACOSTIA PARK. I MAKE JEWELRY OUT OF IT. I’M ABLE TO FINANCE MY HOMELESS
OUTREACH. I DON’T GET GRANTS. I LIVE BY MY WITS BECAUSE THAT’S
WHAT THE DISTRICT IS ABOUT. TAKING WHAT YOU’VE GOT AND DOING
WHAT YOU NEED TO DO WITH IT.>>I GUESS FINALLY, SHARON, WE
REPRESENT YOUR GOVERNMENT HERE. WE WORK FOR YOU. IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE THAT YOU
WOULD LIKE TO SAY TO US OF HOW WE CAN HELP MORE FOLKS THAT HAVE
SEEN TOUGH TIMES LIKE YOU? TO GET THEM BACK ON YOUR FEET
LIKE YOU OBVIOUSLY ARE, TO SEE THAT OUR RESIDENTS HAVE A
PATHWAY TO THE MIDDLE CLASS AND MORE PEOPLE HAVE A FRESH START
AND SERVE THE PEOPLE THAT WE INTEND TO SERVE. WHAT DO YOU WANT TO TELL US?
>>WELL, I HAVE TO STAND UP FOR THIS. [LAUGHTER] I WANT TO TELL THE DISTRICT
RESIDENTS THAT THE DISTRICT IS DOING THEIR PART. YOU HAVE TO DO YOUR PART. I CRAWLED FROM UNDER THAT
BRIDGE. AND PEOPLE HAD BETS ON MY LIFE,
THAT I WAS GOING TO BE DEAD BY THE TIME I WAS 25 YEARS OLD. BUT HERE I STAND WITH A MASTER’S
DEGREE, GOT THE CERTIFICATE THROUGH THE SOLAR FOR ALL
PROGRAM. AND I AM LOOKING FOR A JOB IF SOMEBODY IS HIRING. [LAUGHTER] [APPLAUSE] BUT I HAVE TO SAY I HAD TO DO MY
PART. AND I THINK THAT’S MY MESSAGE. THAT’S THAT TAKE-HOME. WHEN WE SEE PEOPLE LAYING ON THE
GROUND OR WE SEE PEOPLE GOING THROUGH HARD TIMES, I WANTED TO
GO THROUGH THOSE HARD TIMES. I DIDN’T WANT TO BE RESPONSIBLE. BUT GUESS WHAT. IN ORDER FOR MY LIFE TO CHANGE,
I HAD TO BE RESPONSIBLE. I HAD TO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT
TO GET SOMETHING DIFFERENT. SO THAT’S REALLY WHAT I WANT TO
SAY. AND THEN I LOVE THE FACT THAT,
YOU KNOW, THE RAIN WATER RUNOFF AND THINGS WE’RE DOING AROUND
WIND TURBINES, I LOVE TO SEE 40 AND WHAT YOU ARE DOING FOLLOWING
THAT. GETTING INVOLVED AND GETTING THE
SENIORS INVOLVED WITH MAKING SURE THOSE WITH LOW-INCOME AND
DEFINITELY OUR SENIORS GET THOSE SOLAR PANELS ON THEIR ROOFS. THEY ARE THE ONES WITH THE
LONGEVITY. THEY ARE THE ONES THAT ARE
HOMEOWNERS AND THINGS LIKE THAT AND MAKING SURE THEY GET
EDUCATED ABOUT HOW THEY CAN GET INVOLVED WITH CLIMATE CHANGING. BECAUSE GUESS WHAT, D.C.
THE CLIMATE IS CHANGING. [LAUGHTER]>>THANK YOU. LET’S GIVE SHARON A HAND. SHARON A HAND. [APPLAUSE] AND OUR MODERATOR, DAVID.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>WELL, GOOD EVENING. LET’S GIVE SHARON ANOTHER HAND. ISN’T THIS WHY WE ARE HERE? [APPLAUSE] WHAT A RINGING TESTIMONY THAT
REALLY SPEAKS TO WHY WE DO THE WORK THAT WE DO IN THE DISTRICT
OF COLUMBIA. MY NAME IS RASHAD YOUNG AND I
SERVE AS THE ADMINISTRATOR FOR OUR MAYOR MURIEL BOWSER. TONIGHT YOU’RE GOING TO HEAR
MAYOR BOWSER’S COMMITMENT TO CREATING PATHWAYS TO THE MIDDLE
CLASS, THINGS LIKE AFFORDABLE HOUSING, CREATING WELL PAYING
JOBS AND INCLUSIVE PROSPERITY SO EVERY COMMUNITY IN THE DISTRICT
CAN BENEFIT FROM THE DISTRICT’S GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT. THIS COMMITMENT ALSO EXTENDS TO
THOSE WHO WORK FOR THE DISTRICT. AFTER SIX YEARS, MAYOR BOWSER
WAS ABLE TO NEGOTIATE AN AGREEMENT WITH THE WASHINGTON
TEACHERS UNION TO PROVIDE BETTER PAY AND BENEFITS FOR TEACHERS IN
THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. [APPLAUSE] AND TODAY I AM ALSO PLEASED TO
ANNOUNCE THAT MAYOR BOWSER HAS ACHIEVED ANOTHER MILESTONE IN
ENSURING FAIR PAY AND BENEFIT FOR DISTRICT GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES. WE HAVE REACHED A TENTATIVE
AGREEMENT WITH OUR LARGEST BARGAINING UNIT WHICH INCLUDES
THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF STATE AND COUNTY MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES,
THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES AND THE
AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, WHICH
REPRESENTS NEARLY 10,000 EMPLOYEES FROM 37 DISTRICT
AGENCIES, INCLUDING AGENCIES LIKE THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC
WORKS, DCRA, DYRS, DPR, D.O.E.S. AND THE DEPARTMENT OF
CORRECTIONS. THIS WILL INVEST APPROXIMATELY
$156 MILLION IN OUR EMPLOYEES OVER THE NEXT FOUR YEARS. [APPLAUSE] WITH THIS AGREEMENT, EMPLOYEES
WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE SOME OF THE MOST COMPETITIVE SALARIES IN
THE COUNTRY. AND THAT IS SOMETHING THAT WE
ALL CAN BE PROUD OF. WE ARE REMINDED OF THE
IMPORTANCE OF OUR COMMITTED AND HARDWORKING DISTRICT EMPLOYEES,
PARTICULARLY ON A DAY LIKE TODAY. BITTERLY COLD AND SNOWY. THERE ARE EMPLOYEES ENSURING OUR
STREETS ARE CLEAR, OUR COMMUNITIES ARE SAFE AND THAT
OUR RESIDENTS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS CAN COME OUT OF THE
COLD. THESE EMPLOYEES AND THOUSANDS
LIKE THEM WORK TIRELESSLY DAY AND NIGHT TO KEEP OUR GREAT CITY
RUNNING SMOOTHLY. THEY HAVE EARNED OUR
APPRECIATION AND RESPECT. [APPLAUSE] AND I JOIN THE MAYOR IN
ACKNOWLEDGING AND CELEBRATING THIS TENTATIVE AGREEMENT. THANK YOU AND LET’S HAVE A GREAT
EVENING. [APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>WE HAVE A LOT OF FAMILY
MEMBERS AND EXTENDED FAMILY MEMBERS THAT HAVE WORKED HERE
THROUGH THEIR LIVES AND THIS HAS BEEN THEIR FIRST JOB. AND SO IT JUST BECAME A FAMILY
BUSINESS.>>WHEN WE FIRST FOUND OUT WE
GOT THE GRANT, WE PAID FOR A RENDERING. THE FAMILY FELL IN LOVE WITH IT. AND HE SAID, WELL, IT’S GOING TO
BE $200,000. [LAUGHTER] WE WENT, OH, MY GOD. WE ONLY HAVE 47. BUT WHAT WE DID WAS WE WENT TO
OUR BANK RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET THERE. AND WE GOT A LOAN FOR THE OTHER
HALF. SO THEY DID A TOTAL GUT JOB.
AND IT’S JUST BEEN PHENOMENAL. THE PLACE IS LIKE A BRAND-NEW
PLACE. AND WE ARE PROUD TO COME TO WORK
EVERY DAY AND PEOPLE COME IN AND THEY ARE JUST OVERWHELMED WITH
HOW NICE AND OPEN IT IS.>>I JUST CREDIT MAYOR BOWSER. SHE’S JUST A WONDERFUL MAYOR. AND VERY ENGAGING. WHEN WE GOT THE MURAL, KRISTY
SPEARHEADED AND SHE WAS THERE SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY.>>ON A SATURDAY AFTER
THANKSGIVING.>>WE WERE LIKE SHE’S NOT GOING
TO COME. THEY ARE NOT GOING TO HAVE IT
THAT DAY. AND SHE WAS THERE. SHE WAS THERE GOING TO ALL THESE
BUSINESSES AROUND THE CITY. AND, YOU KNOW, I MEAN EVEN WHEN
IT SNOWED, I SAW HER OUT SHOVELING SNOW. THIS WOMAN IS INCREDIBLE. SO WE JUST LOVE HER.>>WE WOULD NOT HAVE DONE IT
WITHOUT THE GRANT WHICH GAVE US THE SEED MONEY. [MUSIC]>>HELLO, EVERYBODY. HOW IS EVERYBODY DOING? MY NAME IS BRIAN KENNER. I’M THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR
PLANNING AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN WASHINGTON, D.C.
I WAS TOLD TO BE BRIEF. AND SO I BROUGHT SOME VISUAL
AIDS WITH ME. SO I JUST ASK YOUR INDULGENCE TO
BEAR WITH ME A LITTLE BIT. I THINK YOU HAVE HEARD A LITTLE
BIT TODAY ABOUT SOME OF THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS THAT THIS
ADMINISTRATION HAS BEEN DOING. I JUST WANTED TO TRY TO PUT SOME
OF THAT INTO SOME OBJECTIVE NUMBERS FOR PEOPLE. THE FIRST NUMBER IS THREE. THREE YEARS. [APPLAUSE] VERY GOOD. BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THE
THREE THINGS THE MAYOR HOLDS ME ACCOUNTABLE FOR. [LAUGHTER] SO THAT I KEEP MY JOB. AND THAT IS AFFORDABLE HOUSING,
TAX REVENUE AND JOBS. AND I THINK THOSE THREE THINGS
ARE IMPORTANT NOT JUST BECAUSE THEY ARE MEASURES OF SUCCESS,
BUT THEY ARE REALLY MEASURES OF LIVELIHOOD AND VIBRANCY IN THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. IF YOU LOOK AROUND OUR REACH,
YOU FIND STATES AND CITIES AND COUNTIES THAT ARE EXPERIENCING
DEFICITS ON THE BUDGET SIDE. THE DISTRICT IS NOT. WE ARE GROWING IN REVENUE. YOU SEE OTHER STATES WITH
DECREASES IN EMPLOYMENT. WE ARE GAINING IN EMPLOYMENT. AND YOU WILL SEE CERTAINLY AS
RELATES TO AFFORDABLE HOUSING THE DISTRICT’S ALLOCATION PER
CAPITA IS THE LARGEST PER CAPITA ALLOCATION IN THE ENTIRE COUNTRY
IN TERMS OF WHAT WE ARE DOING AROUND AFFORDABLE HOUSING. [APPLAUSE] NEXT NUMBER, 5,000. 5,000 IS REPRESENTATIVE OF THE
NUMBER OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING UNITS DELIVERED IN THE LAST
THREE YEARS. [APPLAUSE] THAT IS REPRESENTATIVE OF
FAMILIES THAT CAN AFFORDABLY LIVE IN THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA. THAT IS REPRESENTATIVE OF
CHILDREN THAT ARE COMING AND ABLE TO GO TO SCHOOL IN THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE TALK
ABOUT IS OUR POPULATION INCREASE. AND I THINK AN IMPORTANT
COMPONENT OF OUR POPULATION INCREASE, THERE IS THIS THOUGHT
OUT THERE THAT THERE’S A BUNCH OF MILLENNIALS MOVING INTO THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. WHILE THAT IS ALSO TRUE, THE
MAJORITY OF THE GROWTH THAT WE’RE GETTING IN POPULATION
EVERY SINGLE MONTH IS FROM BIRTHS. IT’S FROM PEOPLE THAT ARE
CHOOSING TO LIVE IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. NEXT NUMBER, 30,000. 30,000 REPRESENTS THE TOTAL
NUMBER OF NEW JOBS THAT HAVE BEEN CREATED OVER THE LAST THREE
YEARS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. [APPLAUSE] AN IMPORTANT PART OF THAT IS
THOSE ARE PRIVATE SECTOR JOBS. IF YOU LOOK AT PUBLIC SECTOR JOB
GROWTH OVER THE DISTRICT AND REALLY OVER THE REGION THE LAST
THREE TO FIVE YEARS, YOU WILL SEE IT’S COMPLETELY FLAT. PEOPLE ARE MOVING AND WORKING IN
WASHINGTON, D.C. AND THEY ARE HAVING A PRIVATE SECTOR JOB. THAT IS HOW WE ARE GROWING OUR
JOBS TODAY. THAT IS HOW WE WILL BE GROWING
IN THE FUTURE. LAST NUMBER, 700,000. THAT IS THE POPULATION NUMBER
THAT WE WILL BE AT SOMETIME IN THE MIDDLE PART OF FEBRUARY OF
2018. [APPLAUSE] FOUR CONTEXT, 700,000 MAKES US
LARGER THAN THE STATES OF VERMONT AND WYOMING. NEXT ON OUR LIST AT 700,000 IS
THE GREAT STATE OF ALASKA. WE WILL SOON BY THE END OF 2018
BE LARGER THAN ALASKA’S POPULATION. [APPLAUSE] CITY WISE, 700,000 MAKES US
LARGER THAN THE CITY OF BALTIMORE. MAKES US LARGER THAN THE CITY OF
ATLANTA. AND MAKES US LARGER THAN THE
CITY OF BOSTON. AND SO WE ARE INCREASINGLY BEING
A PLACE WHERE PEOPLE ARE CHOOSING TO LIVE AND CHOOSING TO
GROW THEIR FAMILIES. MY FINAL FEW SLIDES ARE JUST A
FEW ACRONYMS FOR PEOPLE. FIRST ONE, I-N-3. THAT STANDS FOR THE INCLUSIVE
INNOVATION INCUBATOR WHICH IS A CONCEPT THAT WAS PIONEERED BY
THE MAYOR AND HOWARD UNIVERSITY TO CREATE LITERALLY THE MOST
INCLUSIVE TECH ENVIRONMENT IN WASHINGTON, D.C.
WE HAVE CREATED THE FIRST AND ONLY INCLUSIVE INCUBATOR ON
HOWARD UNIVERSITY SEVEN DAYS A WEEK. IT IS A TESTAMENT TO THE
PRIORITIZATION THAT THE MAYOR HAS ABOUT MAKING SURE THAT
INCLUSIVENESS AND TECH AND INNOVATION, JOBS AND DIVERSITY
IS A PRIORITY FOR US. NEXT ACRONYM. N-P-F, NEIGHBORHOOD PROSPERITY
FUND, CHAMPIONED BY THE MAYOR TO MAKE SURE WE HAVE FOOD ACCESS
ALL AROUND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. WE KNOW WE HAVE FOOD DESERTS
LOCATED IN D.C. THE NEIGHBORHOOD PROSPERITY
FUND, THE FIRST OF ITS KIND, WAS ABLE TO PUT $3 MILLION TO
SUPPORT TWO IMPORTANT PROJECTS. ONE IN WARD 7 AND ONE IN WARD 8
TO CREATE NEW FRESH FOOD SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES LOCATED EAST OF
THE RIVER FOR THE FIRST TIME. [APPLAUSE] FINAL ONE, PROMISE. E-S-A, THE ENTERTAINMENT AND
SPORTS ARENA ELECTED ON THE ST. ELIZABETH’S CAMPUS IN WARD 8
WHICH AGAIN REPRESENTS — AS I LIKE TO TELL PEOPLE DOES NOT
REALLY REPRESENT BASKETBALL. IT IS MUCH BIGGER THAN
BASKETBALL. THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR
CONSTRUCTION JOBS. THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR 500
PERMANENT JOBS. THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE A
CATALYST ON THE ST. ELIZABETH’S CAMPUS ON A WAY THAT HAS NEVER
EVER HAPPENED CHAMPIONED BY THE MAYOR. SHE SAID WHEN SHE CAME INTO
OFFICE WE NEED TO GET ST. ELIZABETH’S GOING, BRIAN,
YOU NEED TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. I NEED TO KEEP MY JOB AND,
THEREFORE, WE HAD IT GOING. ALL OF THESE NUMBERS AND ALL OF
THESE INVESTMENTS I THINK AGAIN ARE JUST SYMBOLIC OF THE FACT
THAT WE NEED TO BE THINKING AND THE MAYOR HAS TASKED US TO BE
THINKING ABOUT INCLUSION ALL OVER THE CITY. INCLUSION IN TERMS OF
PROSPERITY. INCLUSION IN TERMS OF JOBS. INCLUSION IN MAKING SURE THAT
WHETHER OR NOT YOU HAVE BEEN HERE FOR FIVE MINUTES OR FIVE
GENERATIONS, THAT YOU HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE A PATHWAY TO
THE MIDDLE CLASS. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. I’M LAURA ZEILINGER, DIRECTOR AT
THE DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES. ALL OF THIS FANTASTIC PROSPERITY
AND OPPORTUNITY, WE KNOW PEOPLE CAN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ONLY WHEN
THEY HAVE THE PLATFORM OF HOUSING. HOUSING IS REALLY THAT ESSENTIAL
INGREDIENT FROM WHICH PEOPLE CAN ACCESS SUCCESS. AND WITHOUT IT, THAT IS VERY
DIFFICULT, WHICH IS WHY WITHIN THE MAYOR’S FIRST 100 DAYS OUR
INTERAGENCY COUNCIL ON HOMELESSNESS RELEASED HOMEWARD
D.C., OUR STRATEGIC PLAN TO GUIDE OUR EFFORTS ON REFORMING
OUR HOMELESS SERVICES SYSTEM. THAT PLAN REALLY LAYS THE
FOUNDATION FOR SUSTAINABLE CHANGE AND PROGRESS IN REFORMING
THAT SYSTEM. MEANING THAT IT IMPLEMENTS THE
SOLUTIONS THAT WE KNOW WORK, TO PREVENT HOMELESSNESS WHENEVER
POSSIBLE, TO ENSURE THAT WHEN PEOPLE EXPERIENCE HOMELESSNESS,
THAT EPISODE IS BRIEF AND THAT THEY EXIT WITH THE HOUSING
SUPPORTS THEY NEED TO NOT RETURN TO HOMELESSNESS. THAT ARE REALLY TAILORED TO
THEIR INDIVIDUAL NEEDS. SO WHEN WE TALK ABOUT OUR GOALS
TO END HOMELESSNESS, THAT’S WHAT WE NEED. RARE AND BRIEF AND NONRECURRING. AND WE HAVE BEEN IMPLEMENTING
THESE STRATEGIES IN A WAY THAT WE ARE ACHIEVING RESULTS. WE KNOW THAT WHEN WE CAN’T
PREVENT HOMELESSNESS, PEOPLE NEED A SAFE PLACE TO STAY. WE HAVE BEEN PROVIDING
YEAR-ROUND ACCESS TO SHELTER FOR FAMILIES. NOT JUST WHEN IT’S DANGEROUSLY
COLD BUT WHEN THAT NEED HAPPENS. AND THAT HAS ALLOWED US TO
ENHANCE OUR PREVENTION EFFORTS AND TO CREATE A SYSTEM THAT
WORKS 365 DAYS OUT OF THE YEAR. IN OUR FIRST FULL YEAR OF
IMPLEMENTATION WITH THE RESOURCES, SUPPORTING THE
SOLUTIONS AND PROGRAMS, WE SAW OVERALL DECREASES IN
HOMELESSNESS THAT INCLUDED A 22% DECREASE IN HOMELESSNESS AMONG
FAMILIES AND OVERALL ALMOST 11% DECREASE AMONG ALL POPULATIONS. [APPLAUSE] ALL INDICATIONS ARE THAT
PROGRESS IS CONTINUING AND THAT THERE ARE NUMBERS IN OUR SECOND
YEAR WILL BE JUST AS POSITIVE, SO VERY EXCITED ABOUT THE
INVESTMENTS ENGAGING BOTH THE COUNCIL AND MAKING THE
LEGISLATIVE CHANGES THAT ARE REQUIRED TO SUSTAIN THESE
CHANGES IN THE LONG RUN AND THE APPROPRIATIONS THAT ARE
INVESTING IN THE SOLUTIONS THAT WE KNOW WORK.>>GREAT, THANK YOU, LAURA.
GOOD EVENING, I’M POLLY DONALDSON. I’M DIRECTOR OF THE DEPARTMENT
OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY INVESTMENT. AND AS MAYOR BOWSER OFTEN
SAYS — AND I THINK WE ECHO, YOU CAN’T TALK ABOUT ENDING
HOMELESSNESS WITHOUT TALKING ABOUT AFFORDABLE HOUSING.
AND THE SAME IS TRUE. AND SO IN THIS CASE, LAURA, I
REALLY WANT TO KNOW IF YOU CAN TELL US THE DROP IN FAMILY
HOMELESSNESS BY 22%, BUT AT THE SAME TIME HAVING ACCESS
YEAR-ROUND TO SHELTER — HOW DID YOU DO IT?>>SO IN OUR FIRST YEAR, WE SAW
A SPIKE BECAUSE WE DIDN’T HAVE THE PREVENTION. IN OUR FIRST YEAR WE ACTUALLY
SAW AN INCREASE IN HOMELESSNESS BECAUSE WE WERE JUST AT THE
BEGINNING OF OUR PLAN. WE HAD NOT YET LAUNCHED
PREVENTION. SO THE FIRST WEEK IN
JANUARY 2015, RIGHT AFTER THE MAYOR CAME INTO OFFICE, WHEN THE
WARMER MONTHS PRECEDING THAT WINTER, FAMILIES COULD NOT GET
ACCESS TO SHELTER, 108 FAMILIES ENTERED SHELTER IN THAT FIRST
WEEK OF JANUARY. YOU COMPARE THAT TO THIS WEEK SO
FAR, AND SO FAR THIS WEEK WE HAVE HAD 14 FAMILIES WHO HAVE
NEEDED A SHELTER STATE. [APPLAUSE] AND SO WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT
WE ARE MORE FREQUENTLY HELPING PEOPLE BEFORE THAT HOUSING
CRISIS RESULTS IN THE NEED FOR A SHELTER STAY, HELPING THEM STAY
STABLE IN COMMUNITIES WITH THE SUPPORTS THAT THEY NEED AND
HELPING FAMILIES TRANSITION OUT OF HOMELESSNESS. AND THE REASON WHY PREVENTION
AND YEAR-ROUND ACCESS IS SO IMPORTANT IS IF PEOPLE CAN’T
TRUST IF THE WEATHER GETS WARM IN A SITUATION THAT IS ALREADY
TENUOUS FALLS APART AND THEY CAN GET THE HELP THEY NEED, THEY ARE
NOT GOING TO ACCEPT PREVENTION. AND SO THAT HAS BEEN ABSOLUTELY
CRITICAL IN GETTING US TO WHERE WE ARE. WE HAVE SEEN 33% FEWER FAMILIES
COMING INTO OUR SYSTEM OVER THE LAST YEAR COMPARED WITH 2016.>>THAT’S FANTASTIC. I HAVE ONE MORE QUESTION. AND THAT IS, HOW ARE YOU GOING
TO KEEP THE MOMENTUM GOING IN 2018? WHAT ARE SOME NEW INITIATIVES
THAT YOU ARE DOING?>>WELL, WE HAVE REALLY TOGETHER
WITH THE ICH AND OUR PARTNERS REALLY PUT THE SCAFFOLDING IN
PLACE TO REALLY CONTINUE TO ACCELERATE OUR PROGRESS. THE EXCITING THINGS HAPPENING IN
THE COMING YEAR, WE ARE ABOUT TO LAUNCH A FLEXIBLE RENT SUBSIDY
PILOT CALLED D.C. FLEX. IT BRIDGES THE GAP BETWEEN WHAT
PEOPLE ARE EARNING AND THE COST OF THEIR RENT AT THE FRACTION OF
THE COST OF A SECTION 8 OR LOCAL RENT SUPPLEMENT VOUCHER. AND IT’S FLEXIBLE SO THAT PEOPLE
HAVE THE AUTONOMY TO CONTROL THE RESOURCES IN THEIR HOUSEHOLD. AND SO WE HAVE THAT PILOT
STARTING. IT’S A FIVE-YEAR PILOT IN
PARTNERSHIP WITH THE LAB WHO WILL STUDY THE RESULTS. WE THINK THAT WILL BE AN
IMPORTANT WAY THAT WE ARE HELPING FAMILIES STAY STABLE
HERE IN THE DISTRICT WHILE THEIR EARNINGS ARE CATCHING UP TO THE
PRICE OF HOUSING. ALSO THIS YEAR, WE WILL CLOSE
D.C. GENERAL. [APPLAUSE] AND NO ONE THOUGHT IT WAS GOING
TO BE EASY AND IT’S NOT EASY. BUT WE HAVE PROPERTIES UNDER
CONSTRUCTION, THE FIRST THREE SHORT-TERM FAMILY HOUSING SITES
WILL COME ONLINE THIS YEAR IN WARDS 4, 7 AND 8. WE WILL BE WELL ON OUR WAY IN
CONSTRUCTION IN THE OTHER WARDS. AND WE WILL CLOSE D.C. GENERAL,
SOMETHING THAT WE KNOW RESIDENTS CARE ABOUT. IT WAS ONE OF THE IMPORTANT
COMMITMENTS THE MAYOR MADE AND ONE THAT WE WILL REALIZE IN A
STRATEGY THAT INCLUDES EVERY SINGLE WARD IN OUR COMMUNITY.>>THAT’S GREAT. THANK YOU, LAURA. [APPLAUSE]>>I’M JOINED NOW BY OUR
DIRECTOR OF EMPLOYMENT SERVICES, ODIE DONALD. FIRST BEFORE WE TALK ABOUT THE
CONNECTION IN PATHWAYS TO THE MIDDLE CLASS WITH EMPLOYMENT, I
WANT TO TELL YOU A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT HOUSING BECAUSE
REALLY, THIS IS A SIGNATURE SET OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS, BUT ALSO
IT’S REALLY THE VISION AND THE LEADERSHIP OF MAYOR BOWSER AND
MANY OTHER PARTS OF THE ADMINISTRATION WORKING TOWARDS
CREATING MORE AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN THE DISTRICT. IT’S ACTUALLY BEEN NATIONALLY
RECOGNIZED BECAUSE NOT JUST THE RESOURCE COMMITMENT, BUT THE
POLICY COMMITMENT, THE PRACTICAL WORK THAT WE HAVE DONE. AND INDEED THE DISTRICT WAS
AWARDED IN 2017 THE VERY PRESTIGIOUS LARSON AWARD BY THE
URBAN LAND INSTITUTE RECOGNIZING MAYOR BOWSER’S LEADERSHIP IN
THIS ROLE WHICH IS A GREAT ACCOMPLISHMENT. [APPLAUSE] MY BOSS BRIAN KENNER HAS THREE
JOBS. I HAVE FIVE MAIN PRIORITIES THAT
I WANT TO SHARE WITH YOU. AND IT RELATED TO AFFORDABLE
HOUSING. BECAUSE YOU CAN’T JUST USE
PRODUCTION AS YOUR ONLY TOOL. YOU HAVE TO PRODUCE NEW
AFFORDABLE HOUSING, BUT YOU HAVE TO ALSO PRESERVE EXISTING
AFFORDABLE HOUSING. SO THAT ANYONE WHO IS HERE IN AN
AFFORDABLE UNIT CAN STAY HERE AND THAT IS KEY. BUT WE ALSO WANT TO GROW HOME
OWNERSHIP AND HAVE DONE SO. WE HAVE INCREASED THE SIZE OF
THE HOME PURCHASE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, THE AMOUNT OF FUNDS
THAT SUPPORT THAT AND FOR OUR DISTRICT EMPLOYEES, THE EMPLOYEE
ASSISTED HOUSING PROGRAM AS WELL WHERE WE HAVE DOUBLED THE AMOUNT
OF DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE THAT’S AVAILABLE. WE ALSO HAVE LOOKED SPECIFICALLY
IN TERMS OF HELPING TO END HOMELESSNESS BY AT THIS POINT IN
THE LAST THREE YEARS CREATING ALMOST 500 UNITS OF PERMANENT
SUPPORTIVE HOUSING THAT ARE PERMANENT HOUSING STOCK IN THE
DISTRICT FOR USE BY OUR HOMELESS SYSTEM TO HOUSE FAMILIES AND
INDIVIDUALS. AND WE ARE ALSO DOING OTHER
ELEMENTS OF COMMUNITY REVITALIZATION, SMALL BUSINESS
TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE. BUILDING NOT JUST HOUSING BUT
COMMUNITIES AND NEIGHBORHOODS. WE ARE LOOKING AT VACANT AND
BLIGHTED PROPERTY AND WITH THE NEWEST PROGRAM THAT WE HAVE
VACANT TO VIBRANT, WE ARE MAKING SURE THAT WE ARE TAKING ASSETS
THAT THE DISTRICT HAS AND RETURNING THEM TO NEIGHBORHOODS
AS ASSETS FOR AFFORDABLE WORKFORCE HOUSING. I CAN’T GO WITHOUT, OF COURSE,
MENTIONING THE 100 MILLION AND THE HOUSING PRODUCTION TRUST
FUND. I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW MUCH WE ARE
THE ENVY AROUND THE COUNTRY FOR THAT COMMITMENT. THE MAYOR FOR THREE YEARS HAS
PUT THAT 100 MILLION IN HER BUDGET. THE COUNCIL HAS APPROVED IT. IT REALLY IS THE TOOL THAT MAKES
A LOT OF WHAT WE DO POSSIBLE, WHERE GOVERNMENT WILL HELP FUND
WHAT THE PRIVATE SECTOR DOESN’T FUND, BUT THEY WILL COME ALONG
IF WE ARE THERE. IT’S REALLY AN IMPORTANT
ACCOMPLISHMENT AND STEP. PRESERVATION YOU’LL HEAR MORE
ABOUT AS THE PRESERVATION FUND THE MAYOR CREATED OUT OF HER
STRIKE FORCE STRATEGY IS GOING TO BECOME A SECOND MAJOR FUNDING
TOOL THAT MANY OTHER CITIES DON’T HAVE BUT WE’RE GOING TO
USE TO PRESERVE OUR EXISTING AFFORDABLE HOUSING. [APPLAUSE]>>I’LL BE HERE AND ASK YOU A
COUPLE OF QUESTIONS BECAUSE EVERYBODY KNOWS IF YOU WANT TO
HAVE HOUSING, YOU’VE GOT TO HAVE A JOB. [LAUGHTER] YOU KNOW, I’M DEFINITELY EXCITED
TO ASK A FEW QUESTIONS. AND AS WE TRY TO GET MORE
WASHINGTONIANS, YOU KNOW, INTO FULL EMPLOYMENT, I THINK THE KEY
THING I’D LIKE TO KNOW, ALL THESE NEW PROGRAMS COMING
TOGETHER — OVER MY CHRISTMAS BREAK, I WAS READING UP ON SOME
OF YOUR WORK. AND I’M VERY INTERESTED IN THE
DISTRICT OPPORTUNITY TO PURCHASE ACT AND INFORM SOME MORE PEOPLE
ABOUT WHAT’S GOING ON THERE.>>SURE. IT’S NOT A NEW INITIATIVE. IT’S A LAW THAT’S BEEN ON THE
BOOKS BUT WE WILL BE IMPLEMENTING IT FOR THE FIRST
TIME IN 2018. WE HAVE DONE THE PROGRAM
REGULATIONS AND DESIGN. AND WE KNOW THAT THIS IS THE
OPPORTUNITY WHERE THE DISTRICT GOVERNMENT HAS TO BE INFORMED OF
ALL HOME SALES FOR BUILDINGS THAT HAVE AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN
THEM, AND THAT WE HAVE THAT OPPORTUNITY TO PURCHASE THEM, TO
PRESERVE THEM AS AFFORDABLE HOUSING. IT’S A SIGNIFICANT BILL. IT’S BEEN 10 YEARS AND WE ARE
DOING IT IN 2018.>>EXCITING. [APPLAUSE] SO I GUESS WITH THAT BEING A
NEWLY IMPLEMENTED INITIATIVE, TODAY I’M WALKING INTO THE
OFFICE AFTER THE HOLIDAY AND THERE WAS A GENTLEMAN WHO CAME
IN FROM WARD 8 LOOKING FOR AN APPRENTICESHIP OPPORTUNITY. HE GOT CONNECTED WITH AN
ELECTRICAL APPRENTICESHIP OPPORTUNITY TODAY. AND HE TOLD ME ABOUT SOMETHING I
WASN’T FULLY FAMILIAR WITH. HE SAID WHAT’S GOING ON WITH
THIS VAGRANT TO VIBRANT THING IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD. SO I DIDN’T HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS
FOR HIM, BUT I TOLD HIM I’D ASK YOU.>>AND I’M GLAD YOU DID,
DIRECTOR. THANK YOU. [LAUGHTER] VACANT TO VIBRANT D.C., AN
INITIATIVE THAT WE ANNOUNCED LATE LAST MONTH AND ONE THAT IS
GOING TO TAKE DISTRICT-OWNED PROPERTIES THAT MY DEPARTMENT,
DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT OWNS AND
RETURN THEM TO NEIGHBORHOOD ASSETS. WE HAVE A FIVE-POINT STRATEGY TO
MAKE THAT HAPPEN. FIRST, WE WILL BE AUCTIONING OFF
ABOUT 35 OF THE PROPERTIES. AND THAT WILL BE ONLINE AUCTION
IN MID JANUARY. AND THAT IS GOING TO BE AN
OPPORTUNITY FOR ANYONE TO BE ABLE TO PURCHASE AND THEN BE
ABLE TO CREATE AFFORDABLE HOUSING WORKFORCE HOUSING OUT OF
THOSE BOTH LOTS THAT YOU SEE AROUND THE CITY AND AS WELL AS
SOME BUILDINGS AS WELL. BUT THAT’S NOT ALL. WE ARE PROVIDING OPPORTUNITIES
FOR OUR CERTIFIED BUSINESS ENTERPRISES. THERE WILL BE EIGHT SPECIFIC
LOTS SET ASIDE WHERE THOSE ENTITIES WILL HAVE THE CHANCE TO
CREATE WORKFORCE HOUSING THERE AS WELL. WE ARE ALSO PRESERVING IN SOME
OF THE AREAS GREEN PACE THROUGH A PARTNERSHIP WITH CASEY TREES. AND WE ALSO WILL HAVE THE
FIRST-EVER TINY HOMES DEMONSTRATION PROJECT HERE IN
THE DISTRICT WHICH WILL BE A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO SEE WHAT
THAT MEANS FOR THE DISTRICT IN TERMS OF MAXIMIZING SPACE WITH
TINY HOMES. I KNOW IT’S A FAVORITE OF THE
MAYOR’S AS WELL. EXACTLY. I THINK MRS. BOWSER KNOWS THAT,
TOO. AS WELL AS WORKING WITH OUR
PARTNERS AT THE HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY WITH THEIR HOUSING
INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIP, AGAIN, CREATING MORE OWNERSHIP,
WORKFORCE HOUSING. BECAUSE WHEN DO YOU HAVE A JOB,
YOU WANT TO KNOW THAT YOU’RE GOING TO BE ABLE TO LIVE WHERE
YOU WANT IN THE DISTRICT AND TO BE ABLE TO AFFORD THAT.>>WELL, SO I INTRODUCED MYSELF
EARLIER. ODIE DONALD II. I’M THE DIRECTOR OF EMPLOYMENT
SERVICES. I ALWAYS SAY THIS EVERYWHERE,
I’M EXCITED TO BE HERE. AND THAT IS NOT ONLY BECAUSE I
GET TO WORK FOR THE GREATEST MAYOR IN THE UNITED STATES OF
AMERICA, BUT ALSO BECAUSE I GET TO WORK ON BEHALF OF DISTRICT
RESIDENTS. [APPLAUSE] YEAH. AND SO I’LL I GUESS JUST MENTION
A FEW KEY THINGS THAT WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO DO OVER THE FIRST
THREE YEARS OF THE MAYOR’S TENURE. AND SO I THINK THE FIRST THING
IS WHILE ALL OF THE NUMBERS ARE NOT OUT YET, BUT JUST THROUGH
FY16, MORE THAN $831 MILLION HAVE BEEN REINVESTED INTO THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA IN EMPLOYMENT WAGES. SO THAT’S A REALLY BIG DEAL. [APPLAUSE] SO A LOT OF PEOPLE DON’T
NECESSARILY KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS. JUST TO MAKE IT REAL PLAIN FOR
YOU, YOU KNOW, IF YOU HAVE WORKFORCE SYSTEM THAT JUST DOES
A TWO-TO-ONE RETURN ON INVESTMENT, THEY WOULD SAY
THAT’S STELLAR. SO OUR WORKFORCE PROGRAMS ARE
FUNDED AT MAYBE LESS THAN 1/3 OF THAT. AND SO THAT MEANS YOU HAVE A
THREE-TO-ONE RETURN ON INVESTMENT. SO I’D SAY THAT’S ONE OF THE
BEST IN THE COUNTRY. SO I THINK THE STATISTICS WOULD
SAY THAT AS WELL. BUT ON TOP OF THAT, THERE HAS
BEEN A LOT OF COORDINATED WORK THAT HAS GOT US THOSE TYPE OF
RESULTS. I THINK YOU ARE VERY FAMILIAR
WITH THE EXPANSION OF SYEP TO 22 TO 24 YEARS OLDS. YOU ALSO KNOW ABOUT OUR
LAUNCHING OF APPRENTICESHIP D.C. THAT HAS DOUBLED APPRENTICES.
THERE HAVE BEEN OVER 300,000 SERVICES DELIVERED TO 100,000
D.C. RESIDENTS, 35,000 OF THEM EMPLOYED AT THE END OF FY16,
WHICH WE EXPECT WHEN THOSE NUMBERS COME OUT HERE IN THE
NEXT MONTH TO BE ALMOST DOUBLE THAT. SO THAT’S A BIG DEAL BECAUSE
THAT MEANS THERE ARE A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO DID NOT HAVE ACCESS
TO SERVICES, WHO DID NOT HAVE ACCESS TO JOBS AND WHO WERE NOT
ABLE TO BUY SOME OF THESE NEW SHINY TINY HOUSES COMING ON THE
MARKET WHO NOW HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO DO SO. THAT’S JUST AN EXCITING THING TO
BE ABLE TO BE PART OF. [APPLAUSE] SO I WON’T TALK A WHOLE BUNCH
MORE ABOUT WHAT WE HAVE DONE. BUT I THINK ONE KEY AREA THAT
I’M REALLY EXCITED ABOUT IS THAT WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO WORK WITH
OUR PARTNERS IN HOUSING, OUR PARTNERS AT DHS JUST RECOGNIZED
NATIONALLY FOR CONNECTING TANF RECIPIENTS TO EMPLOYMENT THROUGH
THE WORKFORCE SYSTEM WHICH HASN’T BEEN DONE IN OUR REGION
AND REALLY HASN’T BEEN DONE IN THE COUNTRY. SO THAT’S A REALLY BIG DEAL AS
WELL. AND ON TOP OF THAT, THIS
ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAM, WHICH IF YOU HAVEN’T HEARD ABOUT IT
WITH ALL THE CBE OPPORTUNITIES AND KEY OPPORTUNITIES THROUGH
ASPIRED ENTREPRENEURSHIP, WE’D LOVE TO HAVE YOU HELP US SPREAD
THE WORD. THERE ARE 13 NEW BUSINESSES THAT
ARE NOT ONLY NOW EMPLOYERS WHO WERE D.C. RESIDENTS WHO WERE
UNEMPLOYED, WHO CAN NOW PROVIDE FOR THEIR FAMILIES, THEY HAVE
ACTUALLY HIRED 40 ADDITIONAL PEOPLE WHO CAN NOW PROVIDE FOR
THEIR FAMILIES, ALSO. AND SO THAT’S SOMETHING THAT IS
NEW TO WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT AND NEW TO US. [APPLAUSE]
>>THAT’S GREAT. WELL, THOSE SOUND LIKE SOME
EXCELLENT WAYS TO CONNECT OUR CITIZENS WITH EMPLOYMENT
PROGRAMS AT YOUR AGENCY. AND I THINK EVERYONE KNOWS THAT
THE TREMENDOUS JOB YOU HAVE BEEN DOING SINCE BECOMING DIRECTOR,
AND THAT YOU ADDRESS SOME OF THE CHALLENGES THAT THE AGENCY HAD.
SHARE THAT BECAUSE IT’S A TERRIFIC ACCOMPLISHMENT, WHAT
YOU HAVE BEEN ABLE TO DO IN TRANSFORMING THE AGENCY.>>I WOULDN’T SAY IT’S ME. I MEAN WE’VE GOT A SUPER TEAM. I THINK SOME OF THOSE FOLKS ARE
IN HERE TODAY, SO I WON’T CALL THEM ALL OUT. MR. CHARLES JONES, DEPUTY MAYOR,
WE ARE UNDER DEPUTY MAYOR COURTNEY SNOWDEN, LA JUAN
STRICKLAND, DR. MORRIS HUGHES, DEPUTY MAYOR WINFIELD. I GIVE MY FOLKS SHINE. THEY WORK REALLY, REALLY HARD
AND THAT’S IMPORTANT BECAUSE THE TURNAROUND — I MEAN WE HAVE HAD
SOME CHALLENGES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA LONG BEFORE I CAME,
LONG BEFORE OUR MAYOR TOOK OFFICE. I THINK BEFORE I CAME, LEO
MILLER — I HOPE I DON’T GET HIM IN TROUBLE. BUT HE ASKED, ARE YOU SURE YOU
WANT TO GO UP THERE? HE WAS SAYING THAT THERE HAVE
BEEN ALMOST TWO DECADES OF, YOU KNOW, LESS THAN STELLAR
ADMINISTRATION OF PROGRAMS. SO MUCH SO THAT TWO OF OUR KEY
PROGRAMS THAT PUT PEOPLE ON THE PATHWAY TO THE MIDDLE CLASS WERE
UNDER HIGH RISK. AND SO WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT
YOU ARE ALMOST CRIMINALLY NEGLIGENT IN YOUR DELIVERY OF
SERVICES. AND SO THAT’S A PART OF WHAT OUR
MAYOR INHERITED. IN LESS THAN THREE YEARS —
USUALLY YOU GO FROM HIGH RISK TO AT RISK AND COME IN AND DO
MONITORING AND KICK YOU AROUND A LITTLE BIT UNTIL THEY LET YOU
OFF THE LIST. WHAT THEY DID IN OUR LESS THAN
THREE YEARS AND HAS NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE IN LESS THAN FIVE,
THEY TOOK US COMPLETELY OFF OF HIGH RISK ON SEPTEMBER 5th OF
2017. AND THEN ON DECEMBER 5th, WE
WERE OFF AT RISK FOR U.I. [APPLAUSE] SO IT’S A BIG DEAL.
>>CONGRATULATIONS. THAT’S TERRIFIC.>>YEAH, CONGRATULATIONS TO THE
DISTRICT. THAT’S A BIG DEAL FOR OUR
PEOPLE.>>THAT’S GREAT. WELL, THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>ABSOLUTELY. [APPLAUSE]
>>THE DISTRICT HAS A WILD CREATIVE SIDE. [MUSIC]>>ARE YOU READY? [MUSIC]>>ARE YOU READY?>>YEAH. [MUSIC]>>D.C. HAS ALWAYS BEEN A PLACE
WHERE CREATIVITY AND ARTISTRY AND COMMUNITY HAS THRIVED.>>WE ARE AN ART-FULL CITY.>>ART CULTURE AND ART VIBRANCY,
AND SEEING THE CITY SUPPORT THAT IS SOMETHING I CAN GET WITH.>>WASHINGTON, D.C. IS THE
CAPITAL OF CREATIVITY. AND THE PURPOSE OF 202 CREATES
IS TO HIGHLIGHT THAT AND SHOW THE ECONOMIC IMPACT THAT THEY
HAVE ON THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.>>THERE IS MORE TO ME THAN
WHAT’S ON TV. BUT NOT JUST ME, THERE’S MORE TO
US. [MUSIC]>>WE ARE THE COOL KIDS AND
WE’RE MAKING D.C. THE COOL CITY AND A DESTINY THROUGH THE
CREATIVE ECONOMY. [MUSIC]>>THE D.C. GOVERNMENT ACTUALLY
TAKING AN INTEREST IN SERVICING AND ROLLING AND DEVELOPING THE
CREATIVE ECONOMY I THINK SENDS A MESSAGE TO THE CREATIVE
COMMUNITY THAT THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE.>>I BELIEVE THAT WE HAVE MANY
GOOD ARTISTS IN WASHINGTON, D.C., ESPECIALLY YOUNG ARTISTS
THAT NEED TO BE EXPOSED. THIS GIVES THEM A CHANCE FOR
THAT EXPOSURE.>>MY NAME IS CAROLINA.>>MY NAME IS DEANNA.>>MY NAMED IS MOHAMED.>>MY NAME IS NICOLE.>>MY NAME IS DESIREE.>>MY NAME IS MARVIN.>>MY NAME IS JOE CLAIRE AND I
CREATE.>>AND I CREATE.>>IN THE 202.>>AND I CREATE IN THE 202.>>AND I CREATE.>>AND I CREATE IN THE 202. [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. I’M HERE TO TELL YOU WE ARE 1/3
OF THE WAY THROUGH THE PROGRAM. [LAUGHTER] BUT FIRST I’M UP HERE TO SAY
THANK YOU. THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. WE HAVE A TRANSITION COMMITTEE
MEMBERS WHO ARE HERE WITH US WHEN WE STARTED FOUR YEARS AGO. WE WERE IN THIS ROOM AND WE
GATHERED AND WE TALKED ABOUT OUR FIRST DOCUMENT THAT WE PUT OUT
AS A TEAM. AND THAT WAS THE BOWSER
ADMINISTRATION TRANSITION PLAN. [APPLAUSE] YOU CAN GIVE A ROUND OF APPLAUSE
FOR THAT. [APPLAUSE] SO IF YOU REMEMBER AFTER THE
ELECTION, THE MAYOR KNEW WE HAD A SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME. WE HAD 54 DAYS TO SET UP A
GOVERNMENT. IT WAS PROBABLY THE SHORTEST
TRANSITION IN D.C. HISTORY. AND WHAT THE MAYOR SAID WAS WE
CAN’T GO INTO THIS WITHOUT SOMETHING WRITTEN DOWN. SO AFTER MANY SLEEPLESS NIGHTS,
WITH YOUR HELP AND WITH LINDSEY PARKER IN FRONT OF A LAPTOP, WE
WERE ABLE TO PUT TOGETHER THIS REPORT. BUT THE REASON WE ARE HERE
TONIGHT IS TO UPDATE YOU ON WHERE WE ARE ON THIS REPORT. SO IF YOU TONIGHT OR THIS
WEEKEND — IT’S GOING TO BE COLD. GO TO
MAYOR.DC.GOV/ACCOUNTABILITY, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO GET AN UPDATE TO WHERE WE ARE IN ALL OF THE
PROMISES THAT WERE ON THIS REPORT. SO THAT’S IMPORTANT FOR TO YOU
DO. BUT WE ALSO KNOW THAT IN THE
OTHER TIMES THAT WE HAVE MET HERE IN THIS ROOM, WE GAVE YOU
AN UPDATE AS WELL. AND MANY OF YOU SAID YOU’RE
GIVING US A LOT OF INFORMATION IN A REALLY SHORT AMOUNT OF
TIME. ISN’T THERE A WAY FOR US TO TAKE
THIS HOME WITH US? WE CREATED FOR THE FIRST TIME,
AGAIN WITH THE HELP OF LINDSAY PARKER, THE MAYOR’S DEPUTY CHIEF
OF STAFF — LET’S GIVE LINDSAY ANOTHER ROUND
OF APPLAUSE. [APPLAUSE] SHE’S IN THE BACK THERE. GIVE HER A LITTLE NOD. SHE’S HIDING NOW. BUT WHAT WE WERE ABLE TO DO WAS
GIVE YOU SOME QUICK STATS. SO DOES ANYBODY KNOW WHAT
$1.74 BILLION REPRESENTS? ANYBODY KNOW? ALL RIGHT. WELL, THE FOLKS OVER THERE ON
THE WALL THERE, THEY KNOW BECAUSE IT IS THE LARGEST ANNUAL
INVESTMENT IN PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE DISTRICT’S HISTORY. AND MAYOR BOWSER DID THAT LAST
YEAR. [APPLAUSE] YOU CAN APPLAUD FOR THAT. AND SO THAT’S IN HERE. IN THIS REPORT, SO YOU CAN TAKE
THIS HOME AND MEMORIZE IT. DO YOU KNOW WHAT 14% REPRESENTS? ANYBODY? WHERE IS CHIEF NEWSHAM? SO 14% IS THE AMOUNT THAT TOTAL
CRIME IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA IS DOWN FROM 2014 TO
2017.>>THAT’S RIGHT.>>THAT’S RIGHT. WHEN WE TALK ABOUT A SAFER
STRONGER D.C., THERE ARE REAL NUMBERS BEHIND IT AND DATA. SO FOR THE REST OF THIS EVENING,
FOR THE REST OF THIS MONTH, AND MAYBE EVEN FOR THE REST OF THIS
YEAR, PLEASE FOLD THIS UP, KEEP IT IN YOUR POCKET. FOR CABINET MEMBERS, THE MAYOR
SIGNED AN ORDER TODAY YOU MUST HAVE THIS ON YOU AT ALL TIMES. LOOK AT THESE NUMBERS BECAUSE WE
WANT YOU TO SHARE IT. WE KNOW THAT WE ARE MAKING GREAT
PROGRESS, BUT WE ALSO KNOW THAT WE HAVE MORE WORK TO DO. AND WE NEED ALL OF YOU IN ORDER
TO DO THAT. SO WE ALSO WANT TO TAKE A
MOMENT — WE DO THIS EVERY YEAR, WHERE WE RECOGNIZE A TRANSITION
COMMITTEE MEMBER WHO WAS EXTRA HELPFUL IN THE LAST YEAR. SO YOU ARE PROBABLY SAYING, WELL, HOW IS A TRANSITION
COMMITTEE MEMBER HELPFUL? OF COURSE, I’M GOING TO TELL
YOU. THE FIRST WAY IS JUST BY BEING
SORT OF A SOUNDING BOARD FOR US. A LOT OF TIMES WE’RE IN THE
WILSON BUILDING OR WE’RE IN OUR OFFICES. AND WE DON’T REALLY HAVE A SENSE
OF HOW WHAT WE ARE GOING TO SAY OR WHAT WE ARE GOING TO
IMPLEMENT IS GOING TO BE RECEIVED. SO I’LL CALL SOMEONE LIKE LINDA
GREEN AND I’LL SAY, LINDA, HOW DO YOU THINK THIS SOUNDS? AND THEN THERE ARE OTHER TIMES
WHERE TRANSITION COMMITTEE MEMBERS WILL GIVE US UNSOLICITED
ADVICE. JOHN BOARDMAN CALLS ME OFTEN TO
TELL ME EXACTLY HOW I’M DOING. [LAUGHTER] HE’S NOT SHY ABOUT IT. SO WE WANT YOU TO KEEP DOING
THAT. THERE’S ANOTHER CONCRETE WAY. WE HAVE FOLKS FROM OUR MAYOR’S
OFFICE OF COMMUNITY RELATIONS AND SERVICES HERE IN THE ROOM. CAN THEY STAND UP FOR A MOMENT
TO BE RECOGNIZED? [APPLAUSE] SO THE MAYOR LIKES TO SAY THAT,
YOU KNOW, WE HAVE A HANDS-ON MAYOR, RIGHT? RASHAD WILL SAY WE HAVE A
SAME-DAY MAYOR. CHRIS SHORTER WILL ATTEST TO
THAT, TOO. WHO LIKES TO SEE THINGS DONE IN
THE SAME DAY. THE MOCers WHAT THEY DO IS
REACH OUT TO THE COMMUNITY AND THEY ARE A LIAISON. THEY ARE LIKE A MINI MAYOR WHEN
THE MAYOR IS NOT IN THAT WARD. SO WHAT THEY DO, THE WAY THEY
ORGANIZE IS THEY HAVE NEIGHBORHOOD ACTION TEAMS. THOSE NEIGHBORHOOD ACTION TEAMS
ARE AGAIN THAT SOUNDING BOARD FOR CONSTITUENT CONCERNS TO THE
INDIVIDUAL MOCers. SO THAT’S ANOTHER WAY. SO IF YOU ARE NOT A NEIGHBORHOOD
ACTION TEAM MEMBER, YOU SHOULD MEET THE MOCER FOR YOUR WARD AND
YOU CAN FIND THAT ON OUR MAYOR.DC.GOV WEBSITE AS WELL. FINALLY, IF YOU HAVEN’T HAD AN
OPPORTUNITY TO MEET STEVE WALKER, OUR DIRECTOR OF THE
MAYOR’S OFFICE OF TALENT AND APPOINTMENTS, HE’S GOT A BOARD
OR COMMISSION FOR YOU. AND SO WE HAVE DONE A GREAT JOB. 97% OF OUR BOARD AND COMMISSION
SEATS ARE FILLED. SO LET’S GIVE STEVE AND THE TEAM
A ROUND OF APPLAUSE FOR THAT AND THE MAYOR. [APPLAUSE] BUT THERE ARE CONSTANTLY
VACANCIES. SO YOU CAN ALWAYS GO TO
MOTA.DC.GOV AND SEE WHAT VACANCIES WE HAVE ON BOARDS AND
COMMISSIONS AND EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE WE HAVE JOB OPPORTUNITIES
AS WELL. THAT’S ANOTHER GOOD WEBSITE TO
WRITE DOWN AND TO SHARE WITH FOLKS. BUT LIKE I SAID, WE WANTED TO
RECOGNIZE THE TRANSITION COMMITTEE MEMBER. TONIGHT WE’RE GOING TO RECOGNIZE
ONE WHO DID ALL THREE OF THOSE THINGS. SHE’S A SOUNDING BOARD FOR US
WHEN WE HAVE A POLICY DECISION TO MAKE OR A PERSONNEL DECISION
TO MAKE. SHE’S A NEIGHBORHOOD ACTION TEAM
MEMBER FOR HER AND HER NEIGHBORS IN WARD 3. AND SHE’S ALSO SOMEONE WHO WE
LOOK TO — THAT WAS PHIL THOMAS OF WARD 3 MOCer. SHE’S ALSO SOMEONE WHO HAS
STEPPED UP AND SERVED ON A BOARD OR COMMISSION. MAYOR, IF YOU WANT TO COME UP, I
WANTED TO SEE IF WE COULD HAVE THIS YEAR’S 2017 TRANSITION
COMMITTEE MEMBER OF THE YEAR, MONTE MONASH COME UP TO BE
RECOGNIZED FOR HER CONTRIBUTIONS. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>>HELLO. I AM MICHELLE MERIWEATHER AND I
AM A PRE-K TEACHER FROM WARD 5. I WANTED TO BECOME A TEACHER
BECAUSE I HAVE ALWAYS HAD A COMPASSION OF WORKING WITH
CHILDREN. I HAVE ALSO TAUGHT DANCE TO
CHILDREN. I HAVE BEEN INVOLVED WITH
THEATER WITH CHILDREN. AND I JUST KNEW THERE WAS
SOMETHING THAT I WANTED TO DO. I GREW UP IN THIS NEIGHBORHOOD
AND I GIVE BACK TO THE COMMUNITY TO THE CHILDREN AND THE FAMILIES
OF WARD 5 AND IN THIS PARTICULAR AREA OF BUNKER HILL. MY HOPE FOR MY STUDENTS, ANY
STUDENT THAT COMES THROUGH DCPS IS TO BE THE BEST THAT YOU CAN
BE. THANK YOU SO MUCH, MAYOR BOWSER. THE WASHINGTON TEACHERS UNION
CONTRACT BENEFITED ME. FIRST OF ALL, OUR PLANNING
PERIOD SO THAT WE CAN REFOCUS AND REGROUP AND MAKE SURE THAT
WE ARE DOING WELL IS STILL IN THIS CONTRACT. AND THAT WE HAVE THE TIME
DEDICATED TO PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH ALSO IN
THE CONTRACT. YOUR EFFORTS AND THE UNION’S
EFFORT AND COMING TO THE TABLE WITH EVERYONE, I SO APPRECIATE
EVERYTHING THAT YOU HAVE DONE FOR US AND FOR THE TEACHERS OF
DCPS. [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. MY NAME IS JENNIE NILES AND I’M
THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR EDUCATION AND I’M PROUD TO BE HERE TONIGHT
TO TALK TO YOU ABOUT STUDENTS IN SCHOOLS. I AM ALSO VERY LUCKY THAT I AM
JOINED BY A VERY SPECIAL STUDENT WHO MIGHT NOT HAVE HAD SCHOOL
TODAY. [LAUGHTER]>>GOOD EVENING, EVERYBODY. MY NAME IS WILLIAM BELL. I’M A SOPHOMORE AT WOODROW
WILSON HIGH SCHOOL AND I’M GLAD TO BE HERE. [APPLAUSE]>>I’M EXCITED ABOUT EDUCATION
IN D.C. WE HAVE OUR SCORES INCREASING,
OUR GRADUATION RATES ARE UP. OUR ENROLLMENT IS INCREASING AND
WE ARE HOME TO THE FASTEST IMPROVING URBAN SCHOOL DISTRICT
IN THE COUNTRY. [APPLAUSE] MAYOR BOWSER AND I HAVE SET
OUT — I SHOULD REPHRASE THAT. CLEARLY, IT’S MAYOR BOWSER. [LAUGHTER] AND I AM THERE TO SUPPORT HER IN
LOOKING AT ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS THAT WE CAN SUPPORT OUR
KIDS THROUGHOUT THE DISTRICT. WHAT I WANTED TO DO WAS ASK
WILLIAM A FEW QUESTIONS. AND SO I WANTED TO START BY
SAYING, WILLIAM, WHAT COURSES ARE YOU TAKING? AND WHAT ACTIVITIES DO YOU DO?>>YES. SO ONE OF THE GREATEST THINGS
ABOUT WILSON BEING SO BIG IS THAT IT OFFERS AN ARRAY OF
COURSES. SO CURRENTLY I AM TAKING A.P.
COMPUTER SCIENCE, HONORS INTRO TO ENGINEERING DESIGN AND HONORS
PRECALCULUS BECAUSE I WANT TO BE AN ENGINEER. AND WILSON ALSO OFFERS — [APPLAUSE] AND WILSON ALSO OFFERS AN ARRAY
OF EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES. SO I AM A PART OF THE ROBOTICS
TEAM FOR THE SIMUL TECH ACADEMY AND ON THE LACROSSE TEAM AND A
CONTRIBUTOR TO THE BEACON, THE NEWSPAPER.>>EXCELLENT. [APPLAUSE]>>WHAT I’M EXCITED ABOUT IS
CLEARLY WILLIAM IS GETTING PREPARED FOR COLLEGE. AND THAT WELL-ROUNDEDNESS IS
EXACTLY WHAT WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERY ONE OF OUR
STUDENTS IN WASHINGTON, D.C. RECEIVES. MAYOR BOWSER INITIATED THE
ADDING TO OUR EXTRACURRICULARS THIS YEAR. AND IN DCPS, OUR MIDDLE
SCHOOLERS CANNOT ONLY DO CODING, COULD DO LACROSSE, BUT EVEN
COULD DO ARCHERY IN 6th GRADE. AND WE KNOW THAT WHEN KIDS HAVE
THAT WELL-ROUNDED EDUCATION, THEY ARE BETTER PREPARED FOR
THEIR COLLEGE CAREER AND LIFE. WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO AFTER YOU
GRADUATE? AND HOW HAVE YOU BEEN PREPARED
BY DCPS?>>YEAH. I’LL TELL YOU HOW DCPS HAS
PREPARED ME TO BECOME AN ELECTRICAL ENGINEER WHEN I WANT
TO GROW UP. SO SOME OF THE PROGRAMS THAT
MAYOR BOWSER HAS INITIATED HAVE BEEN — WELL, ONE, THE NBY
PROGRAM. I DID THIS OVER THE SUMMER. IT WAS A PROGRAM AT CATHOLIC
UNIVERSITY. AND WE SAT IN WORKSHOPS AND
LEARNED LEADERSHIP TRAITS. AND THEN —
OH, YEAH, THE KIDS RIDE FREE PROGRAM. [LAUGHTER] SO I LIVE IN WARD 7 AND MY
SCHOOL IS IN WARD 3. AND SO IT TAKES ME A LONG TIME
TO GET TO SCHOOL. BUT ALSO BEFORE THE KIDS RIDE
FREE PROGRAM, I HAD TO PAY A MONTHLY PASS TO GET TO SCHOOL. BUT BECAUSE OF THIS PROGRAM, I
NOW CAN RIDE FREE TO SCHOOL. [APPLAUSE] AND THEN ANOTHER PROGRAM IS THE
EVERY DAY COUNTS PROGRAM WHERE WE TACKLE AND ADDRESS THE
PROBLEM OF TRUANCY AND ATTENDANCE POLICIES IN DCPS.>>AND I HAVE TO SAY THAT ONE OF
THE THINGS THAT WILLIAM DID WAS PART OF A TEAM OF HIGH SCHOOL
STUDENTS THAT CAME TO TRY AND FIGURE OUT WAYS THAT WE COULD
GET OUR KIDS TO SCHOOL AND DECREASE ABSENTEEISM AND
INCREASE ATTENDANCE. I’M REALLY EXCITED BECAUSE WHEN
I THINK ABOUT WILLIAM, I THINK ABOUT ALL THE COLLEGES THAT
SHOULD BE KNOCKING DOWN HIS DOOR BECAUSE HE IS READY TO BE AN
ELECTRICAL ENGINEER AND DO THAT BACK HERE IN D.C. ONE OF THE THINGS I’M GLAD THAT
WILLIAM MENTIONED ALSO WAS THE IMPORTANCE OF ATTENDANCE. CLEARLY OUR STUDENTS CAN ONLY
ACHIEVE IF THEY ARE IN SCHOOL. AND OUR EVERYDAY COUNTS
INITIATIVE THAT THE MAYOR INITIATED IS DOING THAT IN A
NUMBER OF WAYS. NOT ONLY DO WE HAVE THE KIDS
RIDE FREE ON METRORAIL WHICH WILLIAM MENTIONED BUT WE ARE
FUNDING SHOW UP AND STAND OUT WHICH IS A PROGRAM TO INCREASE
ATTENDANCE THROUGHOUT THE CITY. WE ALSO HAVE RESOURCES FOR
TEACHERS AND FOR SCHOOL LEADERS AND INCENTIVES AROUND
ATTENDANCE. AND WE EVEN, AS I MENTIONED
BEFORE, WE HAVE DONE THIS EVERY DAY COUNTS DESIGN CHALLENGE
WHICH IS ENGAGING OUR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS IN PARTICULAR
HELPING US SOLVE THESE PROBLEMS. IT’S PARTICULARLY EXCITING FOR
ME TO GET TO WORK WITH STUDENTS LIKE WILLIAM AND SEE WHAT WE
NEED TO DO AS A DISTRICT AND WHAT THE MAYOR AND I AND
EVERYBODY IN THIS ROOM ARE COMMITTED TO, NOT ONLY FOR YOUR
SUCCESS THROUGH COLLEGE, CAREER AND LIFE, BUT EVERY OTHER CHILD
WHO LIVES IN WASHINGTON, D.C. AND EVERY SCHOOL IN EVERY
NEIGHBORHOOD AND IN EVERY WARD. AND SO WITH THAT, I’D LIKE TO
WELCOME TWO GUESTS UP TO THE STAGE WHO ARE CHAMPIONS OF
EDUCATION IN D.C., CATHERINE BRADLEY AND BEN WILLIAMS. [APPLAUSE]
>>SO GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. I’M CATHERINE BRADLEY. [APPLAUSE] THANK YOU, ROBERT. [LAUGHTER] I AM THE FOUNDER AND CHAIR OF
CITY BRIDGE FOUNDATION AND CITY BRIDGE EDUCATION. AND WE HAVE BEEN WORKING FOR
ABOUT 15 YEARS NOW TO INVEST IN THE THINGS THAT WILL HELP D.C.
STUDENTS GET THE BEST POSSIBLE EDUCATION. SO THANK YOU, MAYOR BOWSER, FOR
EVERYTHING YOU HAVE DONE TO SUPPORT THAT TRAJECTORY. SO I WANT TO START WITH A BIT OF
A SHOUT-OUT. WHERE HAS WILLIAM GONE HERE? SO TAKING A.P. COMPUTER SCIENCE,
WILLIAM, YOU HAVE TO LEAN FORWARD HERE TO I CAN SEE YOU. A.P. COMPUTER SCIENCE AND A
CAREER TRAJECTORY AS AN ELECTRICAL ENGINEER, I HAVE TO
SAY ONE THING. KEEP GOING. THAT IS AN AWESOME THING TO DO. I HOPE YOU PERSEVERE. [APPLAUSE] AND I HOPE YOU TELL ALL YOUR
FRIENDS THAT THIS KIND OF PATH IS GOING TO SET YOU UP SO
BEAUTIFULLY FOR A FUTURE WHERE GLOBALIZATION AND TECHNOLOGY ARE
BRINGING SO MUCH CHANGE. YOU’RE GOING TO BE BEAUTIFULLY
POSITIONED. SO THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING THAT
YOU ARE DOING. [APPLAUSE] SO MY JOB IS TO DO A QUICK
OVERVIEW ON THE PROGRESS THAT WE HAVE HAD HERE IN EDUCATION. AND STARTING ABOUT 10 YEARS AGO
WITH MAYORAL CONTROL, SOME VERY INTENTIONAL DECISIONS WERE MADE
BECAUSE THIS STUFF DOESN’T JUST HAPPEN BY ACCIDENT. INTENTIONAL DECISIONS WERE MADE
TO MAKE D.C. WHAT I LIKE TO CALL A TALENT MECCA FOR THE BEST
TEACHERS AND LEADERS FROM ALL OVER THE COUNTRY. AND THEN TO MAKE VERY
INTENTIONAL INVESTMENTS IN THE THINGS THAT REALLY MATTERED FOR
STUDENT LEARNING AND STUDENT GROWTH. THERE ARE LOTS OF DATA POINTS
THAT SHOW US THAT THIS REALLY IS WORKING. I’M GOING TO GIVE YOU TWO. THE FIRST ONE COMES FROM A TEST
THAT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT GIVES US ALL OVER THE COUNTRY
EVERY OTHER YEAR. AND IT’S A REALLY USEFUL
MEASURING STICK TO FIGURE OUT HOW ARE WE AS A CITY DOING
COMPARED TO OUR PEER CITIES ALL AROUND THE COUNTRY. AND THE ANSWER IS, WE’RE DOING
UNBELIEVABLY WELL. WE ARE THE FASTEST GROWING CITY
IN THE NATION AND OUR KIDS HAVE BEEN ACHIEVING LIKE THAT FOR A
SUSTAINED PERIOD OF TIME. THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN BY ACCIDENT. IT HAPPENS BECAUSE OF
INTENTIONAL DECISIONS THAT LEADERS AND TEACHERS AND
PRINCIPALS HAVE MADE HERE ACROSS THE YEARS. THAT GROWTH HAS ALSO BEEN ACROSS
ALL DEMOGRAPHIC GROUPS IN THE CITY. IT’S A REAL THING TO CELEBRATE
AND BE PROUD OF. [APPLAUSE] SECOND DATA POINT IS GROWTH OF A
DIFFERENT KIND. THAT OUR SCHOOL SYSTEM IS
GROWING. AFTER DECADES AND DECADES OF
REAL STAGNATION AND OF DECREASES IN STUDENT ENROLLMENT, OUR
SCHOOLS, OUR DCPS SYSTEM AND OUR CHARTER SYSTEM ARE GROWING. THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF NEW
FAMILIES CHOOSING TO ENROLL EVERY SINGLE YEAR. THEY DO THAT NOW THROUGH
SOMETHING CALLED A COMMON LOTTERY WHERE FAMILIES CAN
CHOOSE FROM AN ARRAY OF INCREDIBLE SCHOOLS THAT WE HAVE
HERE TO OFFER. SO A COUPLE OF QUICK EXAMPLES
AND I’LL DO YOU. IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN FOREIGN
LANGUAGE, YOU CAN HAVE A SCHOOL LIKE YU YING WHICH TEACHES
CHINESE. IF YOU WANT A SCHOOL THAT REALLY
FOCUSES ON THE NEEDS OF BOYS, YOU GO TO DR. WILLIAMS SCHOOL,
RON BROWN COLLEGE PREP. IF YOU WANT YOUR KIDS TO LEARN
TECH SKILLS, YOU HAVE McKINLEY TECH AND WASHINGTON LEADERSHIP
ACADEMY. IT IS REMARKABLE WHAT HAS BEEN
CREATED HERE IN D.C. WHERE I SIT IN MY JOB, I SEE
SOME OF THE INNOVATION THAT’S RIGHT ON THE HORIZON. AND I KNOW THAT D.C. IS JUST
GETTING STARTED. SO I BELIEVE THAT IF WE STAY THE
COURSE, IF WE REALLY FOCUS ON WHERE WE KNOW THAT WE ARE WEAK
AND IF WE DOUBLE DOWN ON THOSE PLACES WE KNOW WE ARE STRONG,
THIS REMARKABLE TRAJECTORY FOR D.C. STUDENTS IS GOING TO
CONTINUE. SO THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>IT ALSO TAKES INTENTIONAL
SUPPORT. AND SO FIRST FROM ME, THANK YOU
VERY MUCH FOR THE SUPPORT THAT YOU HAVE GIVEN THE DISTRICT. YOU TALKED ABOUT THE PAST 10
YEARS AND WHEN MAYORAL CONTROL BEGAN ABOUT 10 YEARS AGO. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE CHALLENGES
THAT YOU SEE OUR SCHOOLS HAVING IN THE NEXT 10 YEARS?>>SO THE REALLY OBVIOUS ONE
THAT I WON’T GO INTO BECAUSE I THINK EVERYONE KNOWS THIS, WE
HAVE A VERY STUBBORN AND VERY LARGE ACHIEVEMENT GAP IN THIS
CITY. I THINK EVERYONE UNDERSTANDS
THAT HAS TO BE FOCUS NUMBER ONE. SO I’LL MENTION — [APPLAUSE] THANK YOU. I’LL MENTION SOMETHING THAT I
THINK IS THERE ON THE HORIZON THAT WE CAN’T MISS. AND THAT IS OUR CITY HAS GOTTEN
A LOT MORE EXPENSIVE FOR TEACHERS TO LIVE IN. IF WE ARE GOING TO CONTINUE TO
BE WHAT I CALL TALENT MECCA, SO THEY CAN ATTRACT THE BEST
LEADERS AND TEACHERS IN THE COUNTRY, WE HAVE TO WORK VERY,
VERY HARD TO MAKE SURE TEACHERS CAN COME HERE AND LIVE AND
SUPPORT THEMSELVES. AS OUR SYSTEM GROWS, WE’RE GOING
TO NEED MORE AND MORE OF THOSE TEACHERS EVERY SINGLE YEAR. SO I THINK DOING THE THINGS NOW
THAT MAKE SURE WE DON’T LOSE OUR STATUS AS THE BEST DESTINATION
FOR GREAT TEACHERS TO BE IN THE COUNTRY IS SOMETHING WE HAVE TO
FOCUS ON IMMEDIATELY.>>WHAT MAKES YOU HOPEFUL FOR
THE FUTURE OF PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THIS CITY?>>SO THERE’S A LOT THAT MAKES
ME HOPEFUL. GOING BACK TO THE GROWTH COMMENT
I MADE BEFORE, THERE IS THIS VIRTUOUS CIRCLE HAPPENING RIGHT
NOW WITH FAMILIES MOVING INTO THE DISTRICT, CHOOSING PUBLIC
EDUCATION, GREAT SCHOOLS ARE GETTING CREATED TO SERVE THAT
PARENT DEMAND. AND THEN THOSE GREAT SCHOOLS
ATTRACT MORE FAMILIES TO THE DISTRICT. SO IF WE CAN KEEP THIS UP, IF WE
DON’T MESS IT UP, I THINK WE HAVE A REALLY WONDERFUL
TRAJECTORY AHEAD.>>THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>SO NOW I UNFORTUNATELY HAVE
TO MOVE TO THE HOT SEAT. THIS IS NEVER EASY. BUT I DO WANT TO TALK ABOUT —
WE TALKED EARLIER OR MS. BRADLEY TALKED EARLIER ABOUT
INTENTIONALITY. THE PART OF THAT IS BEING
EXTREMELY BOLD. AND WE KNOW THAT OUR MAYOR,
MAYOR BOWSER AND HER TEAM, THEY ARE VERY BOLD. THEY ARE SOLUTION ORIENTED.
AND THEY ARE PEOPLE OF ACTION. AND MAYOR BOWSER PUSHED HER TEAM
TO MAKE SURE THAT WE ADDRESS THAT ACHIEVEMENT GAP THAT
MS. BRADLEY TALKED ABOUT. IF YOU WANT TO KNOW THE
STATISTICS, YOU CAN LOOK ONLINE. BUT KNOW THAT YOUNG MEN OF
COLOR, YOUNG PEOPLE OF COLOR, THERE’S A HUGE DISPARITY OF
THEIR PERFORMANCE VERSUS THEIR PEERS’ PERFORMANCE. WHAT’S EVEN MORE ALARMING IS
THREE YEARS AGO LOOKING AT THE DATA, 48% OF OUR
AFRICAN-AMERICAN YOUNG MEN WERE GRADUATING ON TIME IN FOUR
YEARS. APPROXIMATELY 55% OF OUR LATINO
YOUNG MEN WERE GRADUATING ON TIME IN FOUR YEARS. THAT’S A PROBLEM. THAT’S A LOSS OF GENERATIONS. THERE HAD TO BE BOLD STEPS AFTER
THAT. THE MAYOR AND HER TEAM, I KNOW
THIS BECAUSE I WAS SITTING FROM AFAR TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT
THEY WERE GOING TO DO, THEY PUSHED THE EMPOWERING MALES OF
COLOR INITIATIVE. THAT INITIATIVE WAS BOLD BECAUSE
THEY SET A NUMBER THAT THEY WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY
REACHED TO PROVIDE FUNDS TO THE SCHOOLS, INNOVATION GRANTS THAT
WERE NOT TIED TO THEIR PUBLIC BUDGETS, THAT WERE PRIVATE
DOLLARS THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM TO CREATE MENTOR PROGRAMS. THE MENTORSHIP OF 500 NEW
AFRICAN-AMERICAN MEN TO GO IN THE SCHOOLS AND ACTUALLY BE
MENTORS TO OUR ELEMENTARY STUDENTS. THEY GAVE THE OPPORTUNITY FOR
OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS TO HAVE SINGLE-GENDER ADVISORS WHICH
MEANT A GREAT DEAL BECAUSE THERE WERE CHECK-INS NOT ONLY ON A
WEEKLY BASIS, BUT ALMOST ON A DAILY BASIS BECAUSE THEY WERE
IN-SCHOOL MENTORS. I ALSO KNOW THAT AT EASTERN HIGH
SCHOOL, IT ALLOWED FOR OUR YOUNG MEN TO GO OVERSEAS AND HAVE
SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES. FOR MOST OF US IN THIS ROOM, YOU
KNOW IN ORDER TO COMPETE, YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND OTHER
CULTURES. YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THE POWER
OF SERVICE. YOU HAVE TO BE AN AGENT OF
CHANGE. AND THE ONLY WAY TO BE AN AGENT
OF CHANGE IS IF YOU ARE EXPOSED TO THAT. AN EVEN BOLDER STEP WAS DECIDING
THAT 48%, THAT 55% IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. WE HAVE TO GO FURTHER. AND THREE YEARS AGO THIS IDEA OF
THE EMPOWERING MALES OF COLOR HIGH SCHOOL WAS ONLY AN INKLING. IT WAS VERY TINY. BUT NOW WE KNOW IT IS RON BROWN
PREPARATORY HIGH SCHOOL. [APPLAUSE] I WILL SAY THAT’S EXTREMELY BOLD
BECAUSE IT COULD HAVE GONE ONE OR TWO WAYS. WE COULD BE SITTING HERE AND I
MIGHT NOT BE SITTING IN THIS SEAT. AND IT COULD HAVE BEEN
CHALLENGED AND PEOPLE COULD HAVE CONTINUED TO SAY THIS IS NOT THE
RIGHT THING FOR THIS CITY, BUT YOU STOOD BEHIND IT. AND SHE STOOD BEHIND IT BECAUSE
WE KNEW AGAIN THAT THERE WAS THIS ALARMING ISSUE IN OUR CITY
AND IT NEEDED TO BE ADDRESSED IMMEDIATELY. AND WHAT WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO DO
AT RON BROWN, WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT THAT
OUR YOUNG MEN ENJOY COMING TO SCHOOL. WE KNOW ESPECIALLY WITH OUR NEW
CHANCELLOR THE IMPORTANCE OF SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL LEARNING. WE HAVE ONLY HAD SEVEN
SUSPENSIONS IN THE PAST 18 MONTHS. AND THAT’S FOR YOUNG MEN OF
COLOR IN THIS CITY. [APPLAUSE] OUR CHANCELLOR STATES THIS
REGULARLY. AND I HAVE HEARD OUR CHANCELLOR
SAY THIS WHEN SHE’S COME TO OUR SCHOOLS. LOVE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT
THING. AND SHE SEES IT, HE SEES IT, I
FEEL IT EVERY DAY. THIS IS NOT A JOB. THIS IS A PASSION AND I KNOW
THAT OUR YOUNG MEN FEEL LOVED AND THAT’S WHY THEIR IN-SEAT
ATTENDANCE IS 90%, ONE OF THE HIGHEST IN THE CITY SCHOOLS.
[APPLAUSE] SO NOW IN THE TOUGH PART,
ANSWERING A FEW QUESTIONS.>>HI. MY NAME IS DANIELA ANELLO AND
I’M HEAD OF SCHOOL AT D.C. BILINGUAL CHARTER SCHOOL. I HAVE RECENTLY BEEN APPOINTED
TO THE STATE EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT COORDINATING
COUNCIL. SO IT’S A PLEASURE TO BE HERE
WITH YOU. IN YOUR TIME LEADING RON BROWN,
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT STUDENT SUCCESS THAT YOU’D WANT
OTHER SCHOOL LEADERS IN THE DISTRICT TO KNOW?>>THE IMPORTANCE OF BELIEVING
IN YOUR STUDENTS, BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS. I THINK FAR TOO FREQUENTLY, OUR
YOUNG PEOPLE FEEL THAT EVERYBODY IS THERE JUST TO GET A PAYCHECK,
ESPECIALLY OUR YOUNG MEN OF COLOR IN PUBLIC WHO HAVE
STEREOTYPES PRESENTED TO THEM ON A DAILY BASIS, A MEDIA THAT
PRESENTS THEM AS PREDATORS. THEY NEED TO KNOW THAT YOU CARE. IF YOU CAME TO RON BROWN FOR THE
FIRST THREE MONTHS, YOU SAW YOUNG MEN RUNNING OUT OF THE
BUILDING, THROWING ALL THEIR BLAZERS AND TIES ON THE GROUND. NOW YOU SEE YOUNG MEN WHO DON’T
WANT TO LEAVE ON THE LAST DAY OF SCHOOL, WHO SHOW UP THREE DAYS
BEFORE SCHOOL STARTS AND ASKING WHAT YOU CAN DO. THEY FEEL LOVED IN THAT SPACE. AND IT’S A SPACE THAT THEY FEEL
SAFE ENOUGH TAKING CHANCES AND FAILING. THE ONLY WAY THAT YOUNG PEOPLE
CAN FEEL SAFE TAKING CHANCES AND FAILING IS IF THEY BUILD THE
RELATIONSHIP WITH SOMEBODY IN THE BUILDING. WE HAVE TO BE BOLD AND
INNOVATIVE. AND I THINK THAT’S WHAT THE
MAYOR AND OUR CURRENT CHANCELLOR IS HELPING US WITH. TO PROVIDE US THOSE
OPPORTUNITIES AT SCHOOLS TO FIND INNOVATIVE WAYS TO FIND WAYS TO
ATTRACT OUR YOUNG PEOPLE INTO THE SCHOOL SPACE. I’M EXTREMELY PROUD OF THE YOUNG
MEN AT RON BROWN BECAUSE THEY HAVE TAKEN OWNERSHIP OF THEIR
SPACE NOW. WE ARE NOW BECOMING MORE OF THE
FACILITATORS OF THE WORK AND THEY ARE NOW BECOMING THE
MAINSTAYS OF HOW THIS WORK ACTUALLY IS SUPPOSED TO BE AS A
RON BROWN YOUNG MAN. ONCE THEY HAVE BOUGHT INTO YOUR
SYSTEM, ONCE THEY BOUGHT INTO WHO YOU ARE AS A PERSON AND YOU
SHOW THE CONSISTENCY OF THAT RELATIONSHIP AND THAT LOVE, IT
CAN GO A LONG WAY.>>THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE]>>WASHINGTON, D.C. HAS MADE
HUGE INVESTMENTS FOR BILINGUAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS. AS A MATTER OF FACT, IN
2016-2017 SCHOOL YEAR, HOUSTON ELEMENTARY OPENED AS THE FIRST
DUAL LANGUAGE SCHOOL ON THE EAST SIDE OF ANACOSTIA RIVER. AND THIS BROUGHT THE NUMBER OF
BILINGUAL SCHOOLS IN DCPS UP TO 11. IN THE CHARTER SECTOR, THERE ARE
SIX BILINGUAL ELEMENTARY EDUCATION SCHOOLS. AND SO THIS GIVES US ABOUT 17
SCHOOL OPTIONS THAT OFFER BILINGUAL EDUCATION IN THE CITY. EVEN STILL, THE WAIT LIST
NUMBERS TO GET INTO HIGH QUALITY BILINGUAL SCHOOLS ARE EXTREMELY
HIGH. IN D.C. BILINGUAL LAST YEAR, WE
RECEIVED 1600 APPLICANTS OF STUDENTS TRYING TO GET INTO THE
SCHOOL AND THEY WERE COMING FROM ALL EIGHT WARDS. THAT MEANS THERE WERE FAMILIES
WILLING TO COMMUTE 45 TO AN HOUR, LONG COMMUTES EVERY
MORNING AND EVERY AFTERNOON TO DRIVE THEIR CHILDREN TO SCHOOL. OF THE 1600 APPLICANTS THAT WE
RECEIVED, WE WERE ACTUALLY ONLY ABLE TO OFFER SEATS TO ABOUT 10
NEW STUDENTS AFTER YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT SIBLING PREFERENCE AND
STAFF PREFERENCE. THIS MEANS THAT THERE IS A HUGE
DEMAND FOR ADDITIONAL HIGHLY EFFECTIVE BILINGUAL SCHOOL
PROGRAMS. AND THIS IS NOT ONLY BECAUSE
PEOPLE SEE THE NEED FOR KNOWING MORE THAN ONE LANGUAGE AS A GOOD
THING, AS SOMETHING THAT’S BENEFICIAL TO PEOPLE IN LIFE,
BUT IT’S ALSO BECAUSE THE BILINGUAL SCHOOL PROGRAMS THAT
ARE RUNNING WELL ARE ALSO TEACHING THIS CONCEPT OF BEING
PROUD OF WHO YOU ARE, OF WHERE YOU COME FROM, OF SHOWING
RESPECT FOR ALL CULTURES AND ALL TRADITIONS AND BEING PART OF A
BROADER COMMUNITY THAT IS RESPECTFUL AND THAT IS KIND AND
THAT ACCEPTS EVERYONE FOR WHO THEY ARE AND FOR THE THINGS THAT
MAKE THEM UNIQUE AND OUTSTANDING MEMBERS OF THE COMMUNITY. SO BILINGUAL SCHOOLS NOT ONLY
OFFER THAT OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN A SECOND LANGUAGE, BUT IT ALSO
OPENS UP THE DOORS FOR PEOPLE TO SEE THINGS IN DIFFERENT WAYS AND
BE APPRECIATIVE OF EVERYONE AROUND THEM SO IT HELPS US
CONNECT TO A MUCH BROADER COMMUNITY WHICH I BELIEVE IS KEY
FOR MAKING PEOPLE SUCCESSFUL IN THIS SOCIETY. [APPLAUSE]>>DANIELA, I REALLY APPRECIATE
THE EMPHASIS THAT YOU SHARED ON THE IMPORTANCE OF PEOPLE
BECOMING BILINGUAL AND REALLY ALL STUDENTS. AND SO I’D LOVE FOR YOU — YOU
WERE TALKING ABOUT PRIDE. WHAT YOU WERE MOST PROUD OF IN
THE LAST YEAR AT YOUR SCHOOL.>>SO CHARTER SCHOOLS ARE HELD
ACCOUNTABLE BY THE PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOL BOARD. AND THERE IS AN ACCOUNTABILITY
SYSTEM CALLED THE SCHOOL QUALITY REPORT THAT RANKS ALL SCHOOLS
BASED ON THEIR PERFORMANCE ON A BUNCH OF DIFFERENT MEASURES. LAST YEAR OUR SCHOOL, D.C.
BILINGUAL RECEIVED 81% ON THE SCHOOL QUALITY REPORT. AND WHEN YOU TAKE ALL OF THE
ELEMENTARY CHARTER SCHOOLS THAT ARE OFFERING THE PROGRAM THAT
OUR SCHOOL IS OFFERING WHICH GOES FROM PRE-K 3 TO GRADE 5,
THIS PERCENTAGE, 81% RANKS OUR SCHOOL AMONG THE TOP THREE
HIGHEST PERFORMING ELEMENTARY CHARTERS IN THE CITY. AND OF THE THREE HIGHEST
PERFORMING ELEMENTARY CHARTERS IN THE CITY, OUR SCHOOL SERVES
THE HIGHEST NUMBER OF STUDENTS RECEIVING SPECIAL EDUCATION
SERVICES AS WELL AS ENGLISH LANGUAGE SERVICES. [APPLAUSE] SO THAT MEANS THAT WE HAVE BEEN
ABLE TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO MAKE BILINGUAL EDUCATION WORK, BUT
ALSO FIGURE OUT HOW TO CLOSE THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP BECAUSE WE ARE
EDUCATING STUDENTS. 78% OF OUR STUDENTS RECEIVE FREE
AND REDUCED LUNCH. AND WE ARE COMING UP WITH WAYS
TO CLOSE THIS ACHIEVEMENT GAP AND OFFER THIS BEAUTIFUL
OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN A SECOND LANGUAGE WHILE BEING PROUD OF
THE CULTURE AND TRADITION THAT EACH STUDENT BRINGS AND IS
RESPECTFUL OF SEEING ALL AROUND THEM. ANOTHER CELEBRATION THAT WE HAD
REGARDING LAST YEAR’S SUCCESS IS OUR GROWTH MEASURE. AS YOU KNOW, ONE OF THE CRITERIA
IN THE SCHOOL QUALITY REPORT IS TO LOOK AT HOW STUDENTS ARE
LEARNING FROM YEAR TO YEAR. AND WE RECEIVED ALL OF THE
POINTS THAT A SCHOOL COULD RECEIVE IN TERMS OF GROWTH. AND TO GIVE YOU AN EXAMPLE OF
WHAT THAT MEANS, OUR 3rd GRADERS WHEN THEY FIRST TOOK THE
PARCC ASSESSMENT IN 2014, THEY RECEIVED 21% OF THEM RECEIVED
THE HIGHEST SCHOOL, WHICH IS 4 PLUS IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS. THE SAME COHORT OF STUDENTS LAST
YEAR WHEN THEY WERE IN 5th GRADE TOOK THE PARCC AGAIN. AND THEIR 4 PLUS SCORE WAS AT
70% AT 4 PLUS. [APPLAUSE] SO THIS SPEAKS VOLUMES OF THE
GROWTH WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THAT SCHOOL LEADERS NEED TO SEE IN
THE SCHOOLS THAT THEY LEAD. IT’S THAT STUDENTS ARE LEARNING
YEAR TO YEAR AND WE ARE MEASURING THE SUCCESS OF THE
STUDENTS IN A WAY THAT WE CAN TELL IF WE ARE DOING THE RIGHT
THING FOR CHILDREN OR NOT AND FOR FAMILIES AS WELL. AND SO THANK YOU FOR LETTING ME
EXPRESS THIS TO YOU AND TELL YOU ABOUT THE VALUE THAT OUR
PARTICULAR SCHOOL PROGRAM HAS FOR BILINGUAL EDUCATION, BUT
ALSO FOR BEING ABLE TO CLOSE THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP AND HELP OUR
STUDENTS BECOME SUCCESSFUL IN MIDDLE SCHOOL AND HIGH SCHOOL.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] SO GOOD EVENING.>>GOOD EVENING.>>MY NAME IS ANTWAN WILSON. HONOR TO BE THE CHANCELLOR IN
D.C. PUBLIC SCHOOLS, EXACTLY 11 MONTHS AND 3 DAYS AGO I BEGAN. AND I’M EXCITED TO HAVE AN
OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE AS CHANCELLOR IN THE FASTEST
IMPROVING URBAN SCHOOL DISTRICT IN THE COUNTRY. NOW, MANY PEOPLE HEAR THAT AND
THEY SAY, WELL, WHAT IS THAT BASED ON? I JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE YOU
KNOW IT WAS NOT SOME TYPE OF FICTION THAT WAS MADE UP. ON THE NATIONAL ASSESSMENT OF
EDUCATIONAL PROGRESS, THE TRANSITIONAL URBAN DISTRICT
ASSESSMENT, THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AT ONE TIME WAS LAST IN
TERMS OF STUDENT PROGRESS. AND LOOKING AT 4th GRADE
STUDENTS. AND THE IMPROVEMENT IN THE
DISTRICT OVER THE LAST FIVE YEARS HAS OUTPACED EVERY OTHER
URBAN SCHOOL DISTRICT THAT TAKES THE ASSESSMENT. NOW THE DISTRICT IS FIRST IN
TERMS OF IMPROVEMENT. SO IT’S NOT MADE UP. [APPLAUSE] IN ADDITION TO THAT, WE HAVE
SEEN IMPROVEMENT ON THE PARCC ASSESSMENT. YOU HAVE HEARD THAT MENTIONED
ALREADY. BUT IT’S IMPORTANT YOU RECOGNIZE
THAT EVERY WARD, EVERY GROUP OF STUDENTS THROUGHOUT THE CITY IN
THE DISTRICT HAS SEEN IMPROVEMENT. AND DCPS GREW FASTER THAN ANY
OTHER DISTRICT IN THE COUNTRY THAT TAKES THAT ASSESSMENT OVER
THE COURSE OF LAST YEAR. WE WANT TO MAKE SURE WE
RECOGNIZE THAT. NOW, I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT
YOU ALL KNOW THAT THE DISTRICT IS REALLY BUILDING UPON SUCCESS
FROM THE PRIOR CAPITAL COMMITMENT IN INVESTMENTS THAT
MAYOR BOWSER HAS MADE. SO WHETHER YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT
IMPROVEMENTS IN MIDDLE SCHOOL — BECAUSE BEFORE I CAME AND HAVING
BEEN A MIDDLE SCHOOL PRINCIPAL AND MIDDLE SCHOOL TEACHER, I
UNDERSTAND THE IMPORTANCE OF MIDDLE SCHOOL. THEY MAKE EXCITING DECISIONS IN
MIDDLE SCHOOL. AND THE DISTRICT SIGNIFICANTLY
STEPPED UP ITS INVESTMENT IN MIDDLE SCHOOL. AND WHAT WE HAVE SEEN AS A
RESULT OF THAT, WE HAVE SEEN INCREASED STUDENT ATTENDANCE IN
THE MIDDLE SCHOOLS. THE FASTEST IMPROVING SECTOR
WITHIN OUR DISTRICT ARE OUR MIDDLE SCHOOLS IN TERMS OF
STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT. SO THAT INVESTMENT IS PAYING
OFF. AND WHAT ARE STUDENTS DOING? STUDENTS ARE TAKING MORE
RIGOROUS COURSES. WE OFFER ALGEBRA IN ALL OF OUR
MIDDLE SCHOOLS. THAT WAS NOT SOMETHING AVAILABLE
TO MANY STUDENTS ACROSS THE DISTRICT JUST A FEW YEARS AGO. NOW, I ENJOY WORKING WITH MAYOR
BOWSER. I HAVE TO TELL YOU THIS. I ENJOY WORKING FOR MAYOR
BOWSER. ONE OF THE REASONS WHY IS
BECAUSE IT’S BEEN CLEAR TO ME THAT IT’S NOT JUST THIS IDEA OF
PREPARING STUDENTS TO HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THE MIDDLE
CLASS, BUT THE CONCEPT OF WHAT WE ARE TRYING TO GET DONE HERE
IS QUITE SIMPLE. WANT TO MAKE IT AS EASY AS
POSSIBLE. IT’S PRIVILEGE. THE IDEA THAT STUDENTS ARE
PRIVILEGED BECAUSE THEY ATTENDED A D.C. PUBLIC SCHOOL. AND BECAUSE OF THAT, WHAT WE ARE
DOING IS WE ARE INVESTING IN AN EFFORT THAT SAYS ALL OF OUR
STUDENTS SHOULD FEEL LOVED, CHALLENGED, PREPARED TO
POSITIVELY INFLUENCE SOCIETY AND THRIVE IN LIFE. WHO DO WE WANT IT FOR? WE WANT IT FOR EVERY STUDENT IN
EVERY SCHOOL EVERY DAY. SO WE’RE GOING TO DOUBLE DOWN ON
COLLEGE AND CAREER EFFORTS. WE’RE GOING TO MAKE SURE OUR
BABIES, OUR KINDERGARTENERS THROUGH 2nd GRADE STUDENTS
LEAVE 2nd GRADE ABLE TO READ. WE ARE GOING TO MAKE SURE OUR
STUDENTS ARE GETTING OPPORTUNITIES TO PURSUE
EXPERIENCES ABROAD. WE’RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO MAKE
SURE THAT OUR STUDENTS HAVE ACCESS TO TECHNOLOGY. I WANT TO APPRECIATE THE WORK
THAT THE MAYOR HAS DONE. I WANT TO APPRECIATE ALL OF THE
SUPPORT THAT WE HAVE RECEIVED AS AN EDUCATIONAL SECTOR. AND I JUST WANT TO CLOSE BY
SAYING THAT WE ALL HAVE A ROLE TO PLAY IN TERMS OF THE WORK
THAT WE ARE DOING OVER THE COURSE OF NEXT YEAR. WE WILL ENSURE THAT OUR STUDENTS
RECEIVE THE SUPPORT THAT THEY NEED. AND I LOOK FORWARD TO OUR WORK
AHEAD. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] [MUSIC]>>THANKS TO OUR SECURITY
CAMERAS FOR HELPING US FIND BISCUIT. [MUSIC]>>BISCUIT IS THE ONE —
THE ONE WHO ALWAYS, ALWAYS HAS FUN WITH US.>>WELL, IT IS THE STORY GOING
VIRAL ON SOCIAL MEDIA. BISCUIT THE DOG MISSING FROM A
HOME IN SOUTHEAST. D.C. POLICE, EVEN THE MAYOR
MURIEL BOWSER USED THE #FINDBISCUIT.>>BISCUIT WENT MISSING. NOW TEARS OF JOY. [MUSIC] [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. I’M GOING TO ASK YOU TO DO
SOMETHING FOR ME. AND I’M GOING TO SAY D.C. IS —
AND YOU’RE GOING TO SAY SAFER STRONGER. ALL RIGHT. AND THEN WE’LL GET OUT OF HERE.
D.C. IS –>>SAFER STRONGER.>>LET’S TRY THAT ONE MORE TIME
BECAUSE YOU’RE TIRED AND YOU WANT TO GET HOME TO YOUR FAMILY. D.C. IS –>>SAFER STRONGER.>>I’M DR. ROGER MITCHELL, I’M
YOUR CHIEF MEDICAL EXAMINER HERE IN WASHINGTON, D.C.
AND I AM PROUD TO BE HERE REPRESENTING MY COLLEAGUES IN
THE PUBLIC SAFETY CLUSTER OF GOVERNMENT. WHAT’S EXCITING ABOUT WHAT MY
COLLEAGUES ARE DOING, OFFICE OF VICTIMS SERVICES HAS INCREASED
THE HOTLINE CALLS BY 209% BY INCREASING ACCESS THIS YEAR. DEPARTMENT OF FORENSIC SCIENCES
IS DOUBLE ACCREDITED AND HAS OBLITERATED THE RAPE KIT, SEXUAL
ASSAULT KIT BACKLOG IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. [APPLAUSE] THE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS
PARTNERS WITH HOWARD UNIVERSITY AND GEORGETOWN TO GIVE
COLLEGE-LIKE EDUCATION TO INMATES IN THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA. AND HOMELAND SECURITY OR HSEMA
DID A FANTASTIC JOB ON OUR 2017 INAUGURATION IN SUPPORTING THE
WOMEN’S MARCH WHERE WE KNOW OUR MAYOR LOVES TO WEAR THAT HAT. [APPLAUSE] BUT WHAT’S MOST IMPORTANT HOW
OUR MAYOR HAS LED US TO UNDERSTAND THAT VIOLENCE IS NOT
JUST A LAW ENFORCEMENT ISSUE. SHE HAS LED THE CHARGE IN
UNDERSTANDING THAT VIOLENCE IS A PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUE AND THAT WE
CAN’T ARREST OUR WAY OUT OF IT. AND SO ALL THE THINGS THAT YOU
HAVE HEARD TODAY, EDUCATION, ECONOMICS, HOUSING, HEALTHCARE,
ALL ARE VIOLENCE PREVENTION RELATED INITIATIVES. AND SO IF THERE’S EQUITY AND
OPPORTUNITY IN ALL OF THESE AREAS, THEN WE WILL SEE A
DECREASE IN VIOLENCE IN THE CITY. AND I’M HAPPY TO BRING UP MY
COLLEAGUES TO TELL YOU ABOUT HOW WE HAVE SEEN A DECREASE IN
VIOLENCE IN THIS CITY. AND I’M PROUD TO BRING UP CHIEF
DEAN AND DIRECTOR HOLMES. GIVE THEM A ROUND OF APPLAUSE. [APPLAUSE]>>GOOD EVENING. I’M KARIMA HOLMES, THE DIRECTOR
OF UNIFIED COMMUNICATIONS.>>AND I’M GREGORY DEAN, THE
FIRE CHIEF. SO I’M EXCITED TO BE HERE
TONIGHT BECAUSE WE GET TO TALK ABOUT THE FIRE DEPARTMENT. WE GET TO TALK ABOUT ALL THE
THINGS THAT WE DO. OUR MISSION IS TO PROVIDE AND
TAKE CARE OF PEOPLE’S LIVES AND TO PROTECT PROPERTY. BUT WE DO THAT IN A VARIETY OF
WAYS. WE DO THAT THROUGH THE
HEALTHCARE, FREE HOSPITAL HEALTHCARE, WE DO THAT THROUGH
FIRE SUPPRESSION. WHAT YOU WILL SEE IS WE PROVIDE
HAZARDOUS MATERIAL, TECHNICAL RESCUE AND MARINE SERVICES
THROUGHOUT THE DISTRICT. ON THE FIRE PREVENTION SIDE, WE HAVE OUR FIRE MARSHAL. WE HAVE OUR HOMELAND SECURITY. AND WE HAVE OUR PUBLIC
EDUCATORS. WHEN I JOINED THE BOWSER
ADMINISTRATION, I WAS TOLD THAT WE HAVE SOME TOUGH DECISIONS TO
MAKE BECAUSE THE DEPARTMENT WAS AT A CROSSROADS. SO MY SECOND DAY HERE IN THE
CITY, WE HAD A FIRE ON 7th STREET AND A FIREFIGHTER LOST
HIS LIFE. I’M IN THE EMERGENCY ROOM
WORKING WITH THE FAMILY, WORKING WITH OUR FIREFIGHTERS. AND I LOOKED TO MY LEFT AND
MAYOR BOWSER IS DOING THIS. AND SHE’S RIGHT THERE WITH HER
SLEEVES ROLLED UP WORKING VERY CLOSELY WITH THE FAMILY AND
SHE’S BEEN THERE EVER SINCE. THAT’S PROVIDED A LOT OF SUPPORT
THROUGHOUT THE DISTRICT. BUT WE STILL HAD TO DEAL WITH THOSE TOUGH ISSUES. AND I REMEMBER SITTING DOWN
THERE AND LOOKING AT HER ADMINISTRATION. AND WE WERE GOING TO HAVE TO
MAKE SOME DECISIONS WE HADN’T MADE BEFORE. OUR CHALLENGES AT THAT TIME WAS
VERY EXTREMELY HIGH CALL VOLUME AND RESPONSE TIMES BECAUSE OUR
UNITS WERE CRISSCROSSING THE CITY. WE HAD HIGH PROFILE INCIDENTS
THAT WERE IN THE PAPER. WE HAD A LACK OF PREVENTATIVE
MAINTENANCE ON OUR VEHICLES AND OUR TRAINING HAD TO BECOME MORE
CONSISTENT. SO MAYOR BOWSER DOESN’T
HESITATE. AND SHE HAD TO DO SOMETHING THE
DISTRICT HAD NEVER DONE BEFORE. AND WE DECIDED TO BRING IN
PRIVATE AMBULANCES TO ASSIST US IN TRANSPORTING THE CITIZENS
AFTER THEY WERE EVALUATED BY OUR MEMBERS TO THE HOSPITAL. THAT ALLOWED US TO HAVE MORE
TIME TO BE ABLE TO DO SOME TRAINING WITH OUR PEOPLE. IT ALSO ALLOWED US AN
OPPORTUNITY TO — SHE PROVIDED MORE INCOME, MORE VALUE TO
BRINGING VEHICLES AND APPARATUS IN SO THAT WE COULD ACTUALLY
HAVE VEHICLES READY. AND OUR TRAINING AND OUR
TRAINING NOW — OUR MEMBERS ARE GETTING TRAINING THAT ALLOWS
THEM TO DO THEIR JOB AND THEY STAY FRESH IN WHAT THEY ARE
DOING. BUT NOT BEING SATISFIED, SHE
WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE HAD MORE RESIDENTS IN THE
DEPARTMENT. SO WE OFFERED AN EXAM, ENTRANCE
EXAM FOR THE FIRST TIME IN EIGHT YEARS. AND WE ARE NOW HIRING RESIDENTS
FROM THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA TO BE IN THE DEPARTMENT. [APPLAUSE] I WOULD LIKE TO TELL YOU THAT
WAS THE END OF MY STORY, BUT SHE WANTED US TO MAKE SURE THAT ALL
THE RESIDENTS WERE PARTICIPATING IN WHAT WE DO HERE IN TAKING
CARE OF EACH OTHER. WE STARTED A HANDS ON HEART
PROGRAM. WE THOUGHT WE COULD PROBABLY DO
MAYBE 5,000 A YEAR. MAYOR BOWSER FELT WE SHOULD BE
MORE AGGRESSIVE. SO TO DATE, WE HAVE TRAINED OVER
35,000 PEOPLE IN HANDS ON HEART. [APPLAUSE] THE HANDS ON HEART PROGRAM
ACTUALLY HAS BEEN VERY PRODUCTIVE. AND WHAT WE ARE SEEING IS THAT
THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHERE CITIZEN BYSTANDERS COME UP AND
HELP IN CARDIAC ARREST AND OUR CARDIAC ARREST SURVIVAL RATE
WHICH IS THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE THAT LEAVE THE HOSPITAL HAS
CONTINUED TO INCREASE OVER THE LAST THREE YEARS. AND SO OUR GOAL IS THIS. WE ARE TRYING TO CREATE A
VILLAGE WHERE EVERYBODY WHEN YOU CALL 911, ESPECIALLY FOR
SOMEBODY IN CARDIAC ARREST, YOU DON’T JUST CALL 911, BUT THEN
YOU ARE ABLE TO PROVIDE CARE TO THAT PERSON AND YOU ARE ABLE TO
PROVIDE CARE TO YOUR FAMILY AND TO STRANGERS. AND WE ALSO HAVE A NEW
INITIATIVE WHICH IS PULSE POINT. AND THAT’S AN APP THAT WE PUT ON
YOUR PHONE. AND IF YOU ARE SOMEPLACE AFTER
YOU REGISTER IF SOMEONE HAS A CARDIAC ARREST, WE WILL NOTIFY
YOU AND YOU CAN GO ASSIST THAT PERSON, ALSO. SO THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] THAT’S AWESOME. SO THAT’S AWESOME. OBVIOUSLY, YOU AND I HAVE A VERY
STRONG PARTNERSHIP. WE ARE KIND OF LIKE SIBLINGS. BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, OUR
DEPARTMENTS HAVE A STRONG PARTNERSHIP. AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE
HAVE BEEN LOOKING AT IS THE AMOUNT OF 911 CALLS WE RECEIVE
INTO MY AGENCY THAT ARE NOT TRUE EMERGENCIES. CAN YOU TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT
AN INITIATIVE THAT’S COMING UP THAT’S GOING TO HELP US LOOK AT
SOME MEDICAL — SOME CALLS THAT ARE MEDICAL, LOW ACUITY CALLS
AND HOW WE CAN MAKE SURE THE CALLERS ARE GETTING THE HELP AND
HEALTHCARE THEY NEED?>>I ALSO SAY I APPRECIATE THAT
KARIMA AND I CAME IN ABOUT THE SAME TIME AND WE ARE WORKING
CLOSELY BECAUSE WE OVERLAP ALL THE TIME. SO I DO APPRECIATE THAT. THIS SPRING, WE ARE GOING TO BE
LAUNCHING A NURSE TRIAGE LINE. AND THE IDEA BEHIND THAT IS THAT
WE ARE GOING TO HAVE A REGISTERED NURSE TALK TO
PATIENTS THAT WE CONSIDER LOW ACUITY SO DETERMINE HOW TO GET
THEM CARE BECAUSE WHEN YOU CALL 911, IT IS YOUR EMERGENCY. BUT IT DOESN’T MEAN THAT YOU
ALWAYS GET A FIRE TRUCK THERE OR AN AMBULANCE THERE. SO WE WILL BE ABLE TO GET PEOPLE
CONNECTED WITH HEALTHCARE SO THEY CONTINUE TO RECEIVE CARE
WITHOUT TAKING AWAY FROM SERVICES THAT ARE NEEDED FOR
CRITICAL EMERGENCIES.>>THANK YOU, CHIEF. [APPLAUSE] SO I’M GOING TO WELCOME MY OTHER
BROTHER, CHIEF NEWSHAM.>>GOOD EVENING. [APPLAUSE]>>WHILE YOU GET SETTLED, I’M
GOING TO TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT SOME THINGS AT THE OFFICE OF
UNIFIED COMMUNICATIONS. SO OUC IS THE DISTRICT’S 911 AND
311 CENTER. WE HANDLE ABOUT 3 MILLION CALLS
A YEAR FOR SERVICE, SO THAT’S ABOUT A LITTLE OVER 200 AN HOUR. SO FOR THE TIME WE HAVE BEEN
HERE, MY CALL TAKERS HAVE TAKEN A COUPLE OF HUNDRED CALLS. WHAT IS REALLY IMPORTANT IS WHEN
I CAME INTO THE AGENCY, MAYOR BOWSER GAVE ME THE TASK OF
MAKING SURE THE AGENCY WAS EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT. AND THE WAY TO MAKE SURE THE
AGENCY WAS EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT WAS STAFFING. THE 911 CENTER HADN’T HIRED ANY CALL TAKERS FOR EIGHT YEARS
BEFORE THE MAYOR BOWSER ADMINISTRATION. AND SO SINCE MAYOR BOWSER GAVE
US THE RESOURCES, WE HAVE HIRED OVER 60 CALL TAKERS. HALF OF THOSE CALL TAKERS ARE ON
THE 911 SIDE AND ABOUT 35 OF THOSE CALL TAKERS ON THE 311
SIDE. WE ACTUALLY BROUGHT IN THOSE 35
CALL TAKERS THROUGH ANOTHER MAYORAL PROGRAM CALLED LEAP,
LEARN, EARN, ADVANCE AND PROSPER. IT’S AWESOME. [APPLAUSE] BUT NOT ONLY IS THAT PROGRAM
HELPING WITH THE STAFFING, IT HAS ALSO HELPED WITH OUR
NUMBERS, OUR CALL HOLD TIME IS DOWN. WE ARE ABLE TO PROCESS CALLS
FASTERS BECAUSE WE HAVE TIME TO TRAIN OUR CALL TAKERS. AND WE HAVE NOT ONLY LOOKED AT
STAFFING, WE HAVE LOOKED AT TECHNOLOGY. WITH THE SUPPORT FROM THE
MAYOR’S OFFICE, WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO GIVE THE DISTRICT
RESIDENTS DIFFERENT WAYS TO REACH 311. SO YOU NOT ONLY CAN CALL 311,
YOU CAN NOW TEXT 311. WE UPGRADED OUR MOBILE APP, OUR
WEBSITE. AND TWITTER HAS BECOME VERY
POPULAR. SO WE LITERALLY HAVE SOMEBODY
THAT MANS TWITTER AND YOU CAN PUT IN THE SERVICE REQUEST
THROUGH TWITTER WITH 311. ON 911, WE ALSO INTRODUCED TEXT
TO 911. TEXT 911 IS A LITTLE DIFFERENT. TEXT TO 911 IS FOR THOSE TIMES YOU CAN’T CALL 911. AND THAT’S VERY IMPORTANT FOR OUR VULNERABLE POPULATION, THOSE
WHO MAY BE DEAF, HARD OF HEARING, CAN’T SPEAK OR MAYBE
THEY ARE IN A SITUATION LIKE A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SITUATION AND
THEY DON’T WANT TO USE THE PHONE BECAUSE THE SUSPECT IS NEARBY. AND SO THOSE ARE JUST SOME OF
THE INITIATIVES THAT WE HAVE TAKEN IN THE TWO YEARS THAT I
HAVE BEEN IN THE AGENCY TO MAKE SURE THAT WE ARE EMBRACING D.C.
VALUES.>>THAT’S EXCELLENT, DIRECTOR
HOLMES. EXCELLENT. [APPLAUSE] SO, DIRECTOR, AS YOU KNOW, I’M
THE CHIEF OF POLICE, PETE NEWSHAM. I WANTED TO — I’M A LITTLE BIT
AT A DISADVANTAGE HERE. I HAVE TO TELL YOU UP-FRONT. NORMALLY WHEN WE INTERVIEW
FOLKS, WE DO IT IN A MUCH SMALLER ROOM. [LAUGHTER] [APPLAUSE] THE DEPUTY MAYOR TOLD ME I COULD
NOT READ YOUR MIRANDA RIGHTS DURING THIS INTERVIEW SO I’LL GO
EASY. SO JUST A COUPLE OF QUESTIONS. WHAT DO YOU THINK IS YOUR
BIGGEST SUCCESS SINCE YOU HAVE TAKEN THE HELM OVER AT OUC?>>I THINK THE BIGGEST SUCCESS
WE HAVE IS UNSEEN TO THE PUBLIC. AND THAT WAS JUST MORALE
BUILDING IN THE AGENCY. ALONG WITH THE SHORTAGE OF CALL
TAKERS, OUR CALL TAKERS DID NOT HAVE A FULL TRAINING PROGRAM SO
YOU HAD A GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS WHO CAME INTO A JOB AND THEY
WERE TOLD TO DO THE JOB AND THERE WAS NO CONTINUING DISPATCH
EDUCATION. AND THAT’S VERY IMPORTANT. AND SO YOU HAVE PEOPLE THAT
AREN’T TRAINED. THEY TAKE CALLS AND THEN YOU GET
THE NEWS REPORTS. AND THAT BEATS THEM DOWN. AND SO SINCE THEN, WE HAVE
CREATED AN OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS AND
TRAINING. WE HAVE OFFERED OVER 50,000
HOURS OF TRAINING FOR OUR CALL TAKERS AND YOU CAN CLEARLY SEE
THAT IN OUR CALL TAKING PROCEDURES. WE GET MORE COMPLIMENTS THAN
COMPLAINTS NOW BECAUSE OUR CALL TAKERS ARE TRAINED TO HANDLE
CALLS. [APPLAUSE]>>THAT IS THE HEART OF CUSTOMER
SERVICE AND YOU SHOULD BE VERY PROUD OF THAT ACCOMPLISHMENT. I CAN TELL YOU AT THE POLICE
DEPARTMENT, SOMETIMES FOLKS ARE CONFUSED. THEY THINK WE RUN THE
COMMUNICATIONS. AND WE DON’T GET THE COMPLAINTS
THAT WE USED TO AND I ATTRIBUTE THAT TO YOUR LEADERSHIP. SO LET’S GIVE HER A ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. [APPLAUSE] AND SO WE HAVE SUCCESSES WITH
YOUR DISPATCHERS, WITH MY OFFICERS AND WITH THE
FIREFIGHTERS ON A DAILY BASIS. DO YOU HAVE ONE SCENARIO THAT
REALLY STANDS OUT IN YOUR MIND AS BEING AN EFFECTIVE USE OR
EFFECTIVE INTERACTION BETWEEN OUR TWO TEAMS?>>SO I THINK IT WAS THIS PAST
APRIL IN NORTH CAROLINA THERE WAS A DOUBLE HOMICIDE OF AN
ELDERLY COUPLE. THE SUSPECT WAS THEIR SON, THEIR
36-YEAR-OLD SON AND HE FLED THE SCENE IN A WHITE VEHICLE. AND HE KIDNAPPED THEIR
11-YEAR-OLD GRANDCHILD. OKAY. SO LATER ON THAT EVENING ABOUT
8:00 P.M., MY CENTER RECEIVED THE 911 CALL. AND IT WAS A VERY IRATE
INDIVIDUAL WHO ASKED MY 911 CALL TAKER TO FIND A GAS STATION
BECAUSE THEY WERE RUNNING OUT OF GAS AND THEY WANTED SOMETHING TO
DRINK. AT THE TIME, OUR CALL TAKER DID
NOT REALIZE THIS WAS THE SAME VEHICLE, THE SAME SUSPECT THAT
WAS WANTED IN NORTH CAROLINA. SO MY CALL TAKER STARTED ASKING
QUESTIONS, OKAY, YOU NEED GAS. WHERE ARE YOU? AND THROUGHOUT THE CALL, THE
CALLER STARTED THREATENING A CHILD THAT WAS IN THE CAR. AND SO THAT ALERTED MY CALL
TAKER THAT THIS IS MORE SERIOUS THAN JUST GETTING GAS. SO WE CONTINUED ON THE PHONE
WITH THE CALLER. IT WAS A MALE AND A FEMALE IN
THE CAR. WE CONTINUED ON THE PHONE WITH
THEM. GETTING THEIR LOCATION SO WE CAN
TELL THEM HOW TO GET TO A GAS STATION IN D.C.
BUT AT THE SAME TIME, WE WERE SENDING THIS INFORMATION OVER
THROUGH CAD TO YOUR OFFICERS. AND WE WERE GIVING THEM THE
INFORMATION. WE TOLD THEM WHAT WE HAD OVER
THE PHONE. WE WERE GETTING THE LOCATION OF
THE CALLER OVER THE PHONE. AND WE ARE ALSO PINGING THEIR
CELL PHONE. SO THERE IS TECHNOLOGY AVAILABLE
WHERE WE CAN PING YOUR CELL PHONE AND KIND OF FIND OUT WHERE
YOU ARE. AND SO WITH THIS STORY, MPD WAS
ABLE TO CATCH UP WITH THE VEHICLE APPREHEND THE SUSPECTS
AND ACTUALLY SAVE THIS CHILD’S LIFE. THAT SHOWS HOW WE WORK TOGETHER. [APPLAUSE]>>I REMEMBER IT VERY WELL. WELL DONE. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. SO NOW WE ARE INVITING TO THE
STAGE DELL McFADDEN WHO IS GOING TO RUN OUR SAFER STRONGER
OFFICE OF NEIGHBORHOOD SAFETY AND ENGAGEMENT.>>YOU’VE GOT IT. YOU’VE GOT IT. GREAT JOB. GREAT JOB. [APPLAUSE] HOW ARE YOU ALL DOING THIS
EVENING? GREAT, GREAT. CAN WE SAY SAFER STRONGER,
PLEASE? [RESPONSE] OKAY.>>ALL RIGHT. YOU CAN SEE UP ON THE CHART
BEHIND ME THAT 2017 WAS A VERY SUCCESSFUL YEAR WITH REGARDS TO
CRIME IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. WE COULD NOT BE MORE PROUD OF
THE REDUCTIONS IN CRIME THAT WE HAVE SEEN IN OUR CITY. YOU CAN SEE IN 2017 WE HAD A 22%
REDUCTION IN VIOLENT CRIME IN OUR CITY. [APPLAUSE] YES. WE HAD AN 11% — [LAUGHTER] WE HAD AN 11% REDUCTION IN
OVERALL CRIME IN THE CITY. SOME OF THE NUMBERS THAT I LIKE
TO SHARE WITH THE PUBLIC WHEN I GO OUT AND SPEAK IS WE HAD A 27%
REDUCTION IN THE NUMBER OF ROBBERIES THAT WE HAD IN THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. THAT IS INCREDIBLE. YOU DON’T SEE THAT IN ANY OTHER
CITY ACROSS THE COUNTRY, THAT TYPE OF REDUCTION. WE HAD A 28% REDUCTION IN THE
NUMBER OF BURGLARIES THAT WE HAD IN OUR CITY. THE REASON I MENTIONED THOSE TWO
CRIMES IN PARTICULAR, BECAUSE THOSE ARE THE CRIMES THAT OUR
COMMUNITY FEELS ARE THE MOST RANDOM. THEY FEEL THAT THEY ARE
VULNERABLE TO THOSE TWO TYPES OF CRIMES. SO FOR US TO BE ABLE TO ACHIEVE
THAT THE WAY WE DID AS A CITY, MAYOR BOWSER, YOU SHOULD BE SO
PROUD OF THOSE REDUCTIONS. CONGRATULATIONS. [APPLAUSE]>>OKAY, CHIEF. SO I’M GOING TO TALK TO YOU
AFTERWARDS ABOUT SOME TICKETS THAT I HAVE. [LAUGHTER] BUT RIGHT NOW, I JUST THINK THIS
IS VERY IMPORTANT. SO CAN YOU EXPLAIN HOW WE GET TO
THESE REDUCTIONS? WHAT WAS IT THAT MPD DID TO GET
TO THESE RESULTS?>>YEAH, ABSOLUTELY. YOU KNOW, WE ARE
STATE-OF-THE-ART. THE CORNERSTONE OF AMERICAN
POLICING TODAY IS DEVELOPING TRUST AND LEGITIMACY WITH THE
COMMUNITY THAT YOU SERVE. SO ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WAS
ROLLED OUT BY THE MAYOR, SHE GAVE US THE RESOURCES TO ROLL
OUT THE LARGEST IN THE COUNTRY BODY-WORN CAMERA PROGRAM. THAT I CANNOT TELL YOU —
YES, GIVE A ROUND OF APPLAUSE. [APPLAUSE] I CANNOT TELL YOU THE WAY THAT
HAS BUILT OR JUST BUILT UPON THE TRUST THAT WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO
DEVELOP WITH OUR COMMUNITY. TO LET FOLKS KNOW THAT WE ARE
NOT HIDING ANYTHING. WHEN OUR POLICE HAVE
INTERACTIONS WITH THE PUBLIC, IT’S THERE FOR ALL TO SEE. YOU CAN COME IN. YOU CAN LOOK AT THE VIDEO AND
YOU CAN DECIDE. THAT WAS A HUGE ACHIEVEMENT FOR
OUR ORGANIZATION. THE OTHER THINGS THAT, YOU KNOW,
I WILL TALK ABOUT IS THAT WHEN YOU HAVE THAT TYPE OF
RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR COMMUNITY, YOU HAVE TO LISTEN TO
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING. OKAY. WHAT WAS THE COMMUNITY SAYING
WHEN MAYOR BOWSER CAME IN AND SHE INHERITED THE RETIREMENT
BUBBLE. THEY ARE LIKE, OH, MY GOD, THE
POLICE DEPARTMENT IS SHRINKING. GUESS WHAT. IN 2017 IT WAS THE FIRST YEAR IN
A NUMBER OF YEARS THAT WE HAVE INCREASED THE SIZE OF THE
METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPARTMENT. [APPLAUSE] THAT WAS DUE TO CREATIVE IDEAS
LIKE THE SENIOR POLICE OFFICER PROGRAM, GIVING US RETENTION AND
RECRUITMENT INCENTIVES GOING INTO 2018. I AM ABSOLUTELY CONVINCED THAT
WE WILL BE TO 4,000 WHERE WE INTEND TO BE IN THE NOT TOO
DISTANT FUTURE. THE OTHER THING THAT I HAVE TO
SAY — AND I SAY THIS WHENEVER I TALK ABOUT CRIME. AND THIS IS THE THING THAT I LIKE THE MOST ABOUT WORKING IN
THIS ADMINISTRATION. AND YOU HEARD DR. MITCHELL
MENTION IT EARLIER. YOU KNOW, THE NUMBER ONE RECIPE,
THE NUMBER ONE INGREDIENT IN THE RECIPE FOR CRIME IS LACK OF
OPPORTUNITY. IF FOLKS DON’T HAVE HOUSING, IF
FOLKS AREN’T PROPERLY EDUCATED, IF FOLKS ARE IN A HOMELESS
SITUATION, IF THERE IS SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND THEIR MENTAL HEALTH
ISSUES AREN’T BEING TREATED APPROPRIATELY, YOU’RE GOING TO
HAVE CRIME. YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE INCREASES
IN CRIME. AND SO I HAVE BEEN THE RECIPIENT
OF A GOVERNMENT THAT HAS ACHIEVED SUCCESS IN ALL OF THOSE
AREAS. YOU HAVE HEARD ABOUT THOSE
SUCCESSES. [APPLAUSE] AND IF YOU ALL CAN DO IT AGAIN
NEXT YEAR, I’M GOING TO TAKE THE CREDIT AGAIN. SO KEEP IT UP. SO TALKING ABOUT OPPORTUNITY,
THIS IS SOMETHING THAT WE ARE VERY EXCITED ABOUT. DELL, YOU ARE GOING TO STAND UP
AN AGENCY THAT IS GOING TO PROVIDE OPPORTUNITY FOR FOLKS IN
OUR COMMUNITY. CAN YOU TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT
THAT?>>YEAH, DEFINITELY. FIRST I WANT TO SAY THAT YOU
HAVE YOUR LAW ENFORCEMENT PIECE AND ONE OFFICE IS A NON-LAW
ENFORCEMENT. AND SO DEFINITELY THESE CAMERAS
ARE ON SO WE DEFINITELY WANT TO MAKE THAT CLEAR TO THE
COMMUNITY. STANDING THE OFFICE UP, WE ARE
FOLLOWING THE VISION OF THE MAYOR TO IDENTIFY THE MOST
VULNERABLE, OUR MOST VULNERABLE RESIDENTS IN THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA. AND WORKING WITH THESE
INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR SOME OF THE SITUATIONS
THAT’S TAKING PLACE IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA,
SELF-DEFEATING BEHAVIORS AND BEING GROOMED FOR A LIFE OF —
BEING GROOMED FOR A LIFE OF VIOLENCE AND CRIME AND SOME WHO
FEEL LIKE THEY REALLY HAVE NO OPTIONS AT ALL. SO OUR JOB IS TO CONNECT THEM TO
THE SERVICES AND RESOURCES THAT’S GOING TO ELEVATE THEM TO
THE NEXT LEVEL SO THAT THEY CAN BE ON THE PATHWAY TO THE MIDDLE
CLASS AS WELL. SO THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT. [APPLAUSE] WE DEFINITELY WANT TO MEET
THESE INDIVIDUALS WHERE THEY ARE. AND THAT IS SO IMPORTANT. IN OUR OFFICE WE HAVE OUR SAFER
AND STRONGER COMMUNITY TEAM AND THEY WORK IN SPECIFIC PSA’S IN
THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. THEY HAVE BEEN WORKING FOR ABOUT
THREE YEARS IN THESE SPECIFIC PSA’S. THEY HELP CONNECT YOUNG ADULTS
TO MUCH NEEDED SERVICES. WE ALSO HAVE OUR COMMUNITY’S
STABILIZATION PROGRAM CSP WHO IS DOING AN AMAZING JOB. THEY WORK WITH EVERY FAMILY THAT
IS IMPACTED BY A HOMICIDE HERE IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. WE WILL CONTINUE TO DO THAT WORK
AS WELL. ALL OF THESE EFFORTS HELP THE
MAYOR IN COMBATING CRIME AND VIOLENCE IN THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT WORK AS YOU
SEE. [ APPLAUSE ]>>I AGREE. I’LL TELL YOU, DIRECTOR, I CAN
TELL YOU NO ONE IS MORE EXCITED ABOUT YOUR OFFICE THAN I AM. SO YOU ALL HAVE HEARD TONIGHT
FROM THE DIRECTORS AND YOU HAVE HEARD TWO THEMES. YOU HAVE HEARD THE NUMBER ONE
THEME WHICH IS SUCCESS THAT WE HAVE HAD OVER THE PAST THREE
YEARS. THE OTHER THEME WE HAVE HEARD IS
THERE IS ONE THREAD THAT IS WOVEN THROUGH THAT FABRIC OF
SUCCESS AND THAT ONE THREAD IS THE MAYOR OF THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA, MAYOR MURIEL BOWSER. [ APPLAUSE ]>>SO WHAT WE HAVE DONE FOR YOU,
MADAM MAYOR, IS WE HAVE INVITED TWO SPECIAL GUESTS AND WE’RE
GOING TO HAVE THOSE SPECIAL GUESTS COME FORWARD AND THEY ARE
GOING TO INTRODUCE YOU TO THE PODIUM. DO WE HAVE REGAN AND BISCUIT,
ARE THEY HERE? HERE COMES BISCUIT. HI, HEY, HOW IS IT GOING? HOW ARE YOU? GOOD TO SEE YOU. [ APPLAUSE ]>>AWESOME. ARE YOU DOING GOOD? ALL RIGHT. ALL RIGHT. ARE YOU READY TO GO? ALL RIGHT. WHY DON’T YOU INTRODUCE THE
MAYOR?>>HELLO, EVERYONE, I AM REGAN
AND I LIVE IN WARD 7. WHEN I GROW UP I WANT TO BE A
SCIENTIST AND AN ARTIST BECAUSE I LOVE SCIENCE AND ART. RIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS, MY
FAMILY LOST OUR DOG BISCUIT, BUT WE ARE LUCKY BECAUSE MY MOM AND
DAD HAVE SECURITY CAMERAS THAT CAUGHT BISCUIT LEAVING OUR GATE
WITH A STRANGER. THE VIDEOS FROM OUR CAMERAS GOT
A LOT OF ATTENTION FROM THE NEWS MEDIA AND SOCIAL MEDIA AND THAT
HELPED US TO FIND BISCUIT. AFTER MAYOR BOWSER TWEETED TO
HELP US FIND BISCUIT SHE AND HER ADMINISTRATION TOLD US WE COULD
GET A REBATE FOR OUR SECURITY CAMERAS. THANKS, MAYOR BOWSER, FOR THE
SECURITY CAMERA PROGRAM. WE ARE SO GRATEFUL AND NOW I
WOULD LIKE TO INTRODUCE OUR MAYOR, MAYOR MURIEL BOWSER. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: WELL, HELLO,
EVERYBODY. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. WOW! LET’S HEAR IT FOR ALL OF THE
MEMBERS OF OUR ADMINISTRATION AND OUR SUPPORTERS WHO HAVE COME
OUT TODAY TO TALK ABOUT THE LAST THREE YEARS. IT IS HARD FOR ME TO BELIEVE A
LOT OF WAYS THAT THIS IS OUR FOURTH MEETING HERE AT
GALLAUDET. OUR FIRST WAS IN THE TRANSITION
PERIOD AND NOW THIS IS OUR THIRD REPORT. SO LET’S SAY THANK YOU TO I CALL
IT PRESIDENT BOBBY AND ALL OF OUR FRIENDS HERE AT GALLAUDET. GIVE THEM A BIG ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: AND WHILE YOU HAVE HEARD A LOT OF THANKS AND
APPRECIATION FOR ME, I THINK EVERYBODY IN THIS ROOM KNOWS
THAT WE HAVE A PARTICULARLY TALENTED GROUP OF PEOPLE WHO
HAVE COME TO WORK FOR US WHO HAVE JUST LAID IT ON THE LINE
FOR THE RESIDENTS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, WHO
UNDERSTAND LIKE I DO THAT WE HAVE BEEN PRIVILEGED TO BE GIVEN
THIS OPPORTUNITY AT THIS TIME IN OUR CITY TO SERVE. AND THAT OPPORTUNITY CANNOT BE
SQUANDERED AND WILL NOT BE SQUANDERED BECAUSE THEY ARE
SUPER SMART, VERY DEDICATED AND VERY BOLD. SO GIVE ALL OF THEM A ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: LET ME JUST RECOGNIZE
MEMBERS OF MY SENIOR TEAM, SOME OF WHOM YOU HAVE HEARD FROM
ALREADY, RASHAD YOUNG WHO IS THE CITY ADMINISTRATOR FOR THE
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: THANK YOU, RASHAD.
AND JOHN FALCICCHIO WHO IS MY CHIEF OF STAFF AND BEVERLY PERRY
WHO IS THE SENIOR ADVISER TO THE MAYOR. AND MARK TUOHEY WHO IS THE
MAYOR’S LEGAL COUNSEL. SO THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR
LEADERSHIP. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: I WAS VISITING
ANOTHER CITY RECENTLY, AND I ASKED THEM HOW MANY DEPUTY
MAYORS THEY HAD, AND THEY WERE LIKE WE HAVE ABOUT 18.
I SAID 18? WE HAVE FIVE. SO LET ME THANK THE DEPUTY
MAYORS WHO YOU HAVE HEARD FROM SOME OF THEM AND YOU’VE HEARD
FROM DIRECTORS WHO ARE LEADING VERY DYNAMIC CLUSTERS OF WORK IN
OUR CITY. KEVIN DONAHUE WHO IS THE CITY
ADMINISTRATOR AND THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR PUBLIC SAFETY AND
JUSTICE. THANK YOU, KEVIN. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: AND BRIAN KENNER, WHO
IS THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: AND HYESOOK CHUNG,
DEPUTY MAYOR FOR HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, AND COURTNEY
SNOWDEN WHO IS THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR GREATER ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY
AND JENNIFER NILES WHO IS THE DEPUTY MAYOR FOR EDUCATION. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: BUT THE REAL PURPOSE
OF TONIGHT IS TO ACKNOWLEDGE YOU, THE MEMBERS OF OUR
TRANSITION COMMITTEE, BUT BEFORE I DO THAT I ALSO WANT TO
RECOGNIZE THE 70 MEMBERS OF MY CABINET WHO WITH THEIR TEAMS OF
33,000 D.C. GOVERNMENT WORKERS ARE REALLY GETTING IT DONE FOR
OUR CITY. SO WOULD THE MEMBERS OF THE
CABINET WHO ARE HERE PLEASE STAND UP TO BE RECOGNIZED FOR
YOUR GREAT WORK? [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SO EARLIER JOHN HEAD
UP ONE OF MY FAVORITE DOCUMENTS IN THE ENTIRE WORLD AND THAT IS
OUR TRANSITION PLAN. NOW, THE TRUTH IS WHEN YOU ARE
RUNNING AND SOME OF YOU HAVE RUN FOR OFFICE AND YOU KNOW EXACTLY
WHAT THIS IS ABOUT, YOU ARE CHARGING FORWARD TO WIN, YOU ARE
CHARGING FORWARD TO WIN, YOU ARE CHARGING FORWARD TO WIN, AND
THEN WHEN YOU WIN YOU REALIZE THAT THE NEXT DAY YOU HAVE TO
STAND UP FOR GOVERNMENT AND THE TRUTH IS FOR MANY ELECTIONS THE
RACE WAS PRETTY MUCH DETERMINED AT THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY IN
SEPTEMBER. WELL, THAT WASN’T THE CASE FOR
US BECAUSE WE HAD A COMPETITIVE GENERAL, AND WE REALLY COULDN’T
START PLANNING FOR OUR GOVERNMENT UNTIL THE CONCLUSION
OF THAT GENERAL ELECTION IN NOVEMBER. WE WON, THANK YOU VERY MUCH, BUT
IT ALSO MEANT THAT WE HAD 54 DAYS TO STAND UP THE GOVERNMENT. WE CAME TOGETHER QUICKLY, BUT
MORE IMPORTANTLY YOU CAME TOGETHER QUICKLY. I THINK WITHIN TWO WEEKS WE HAD
300 PEOPLE FROM ALL EIGHT WARDS, EVERY GROUP IN THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA IN THE ARTS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, LGBTQ AND
YOU NAME IT, EVERY GROUP WAS REPRESENTED IN THAT GROUP OF 300
PEOPLE. WE CAME HERE TO LAY OUT A PLAN
FOR HOW WE WOULD RECRUIT THE BEST AND THE BRIGHTEST AND HOW
WE WOULD START ON DAY ONE HAVING A GOVERNMENT THAT YOU COULD BE
PROUD OF. PEOPLE ASK ME FREQUENTLY, WHAT
ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF AS YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT THE LAST THREE
YEARS IN LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEXT FIVE. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: WHAT ARE YOU MOST
PROUD OF? AND I SAY I AM PROUD THAT D.C.
RESIDENTS ARE PROUD. WE PROMISED THAT WE WOULD
DELIVER A FRESH START AND HOW WE RUN OUR GOVERNMENT AND HOW WE
LAY OUT OUR PLANS, HOW WE COMMUNICATE, HOW WE ARE
COMMITTED TO BEING ETHICAL AND TRANSPARENT AND ALWAYS TELLING
THE RESIDENTS OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA THE TRUTH AND HOW WE
ARE GOING TO GET THINGS DONE. AND I HAVE TO TELL YOU AS A
PERSON WHOSE FAMILY HAS BEEN HERE FOR FIVE GENERATIONS, I
HAVE NEVER SEEN THE LEVEL OF D.C. PRIDE THAT I SEE TODAY. SO I WANT TO THANK YOU ALL VERY
MUCH FOR THAT COMMITMENT TO OUR CITY. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SO TO ALL OF THE
MEMBERS OF THE TRANSITION COMMITTEE, OUR COCHAIRS AND ALL
OF YOU THAT STAY IN TOUCH EACH AND EVERY DAY ABOUT HOW WE COULD
BE BETTER, HOW WE CAN CHALLENGE OURSELVES MORE, HOW WE CAN TALK
TO MORE RESIDENTS AND GO TO MORE COMMUNITIES, I THANK YOU. AND THE TRUTH IS THAT THIS
MEETING AND THE VERY LOVELY PRESENTATION THAT WE SAW TODAY,
WASN’T THAT EXCELLENT TO HEAR FROM EVERYBODY IN A RELAXED WAY? [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: AND I DO WANT TO ASK
YOU TO GO AND LOOK AT THE ACCOUNTABILITY PLAN, AND THIS IS
A LOVELY REPORT, BUT WHAT IT IS BUILT ON IS A QUICK AND DIRTY
EXCEL SPREADSHEET THAT LISTS EVERY PROMISE AND OUR PROGRESS
TOWARDS GETTING THERE. I AM ALSO VERY PROUD THAT THE
DISTRICT IS, INDEED, STRONGER THAN WHEN WE FOUND IT BACK IN
2015. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: AND I SAY THAT
BECAUSE OUR POPULATION IS UP, OUR REVENUES ARE UP, OUR CRIME
IS DOWN, OUR UNEMPLOYMENT IS DOWN, WE’RE CREATING MORE JOBS,
WE’RE CREATING MORE HOUSING, AND WE KNOW THAT WE HAVE MADE
TREMENDOUS PROGRESS AND WE STILL HAVE THE GAS AND THE STEAM TO
MAKE EVEN MORE, AND THAT IS, THAT IS MY WHOLE JOB.
MY WHOLE JOB IS TO MAKE SURE THAT I AM HIRING THE PEOPLE, AND
I’M MAKING THE DECISIONS AND I AM BEING A STEWARD OF LEADERSHIP
SO THAT WHEN MY TIME IS DONE BEING MAYOR THAT WE WILL PASS
OFF TO THE NEXT LEADER AND THE NEXT CABINET A BETTER CITY THAT
WE ARE BUILDING FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS OF WASHINGTON, D.C.
AND YOU SHOULD ALL BE PROUD THAT WITH ALL OF THE UNCERTAINTY IN
THE WORLD AND WHO KNEW THAT I WOULD BE LEADING IN TRUMP
AMERICA. WHO KNEW? I DIDN’T KNOW. BUT WE ARE BETTER ABLE, BETTER
THAN MOST TO RESPOND TO THE UNCERTAINTIES THAT COME WITH
SUCH UNEXPECTED CHANGES. SO I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU FOR
YOUR COMMITMENT, THANK YOU FOR FILLING THIS ROOM EACH AND EVERY
YEAR, AND THANK YOU FOR CHALLENGING US TO CONTINUE TO
TAKE OUR CITY FORWARD. YOU’VE HEARD ALL OF THE
ACCOMPLISHMENTS. SO I THOUGHT I WOULD GIVE YOU A
FEW FUN THINGS THAT HAVE HAPPENED OVER THE LAST THREE
YEARS. YOU MIGHT REMEMBER THAT WE
HOSTED A PAPAL VISIT. YOU REMEMBER THAT? I WANT TO THANK OUR TEAMS WHO
GOT READY FOR THAT BECAUSE THE POPE WENT TO PHILADELPHIA AND
THEY SHUT THE CITY DOWN. THE POPE CAME TO WASHINGTON,
D.C., AND WE KEPT THE CITY OPEN SO THANK YOU FOR THAT. I WANT TO — YOU MAY REMEMBER
THAT I HAVE MADE A TRIP SO YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO, UP TO TRUMP
TOWER. AND THEN AGAIN TO THE OVAL
OFFICE. SO THAT IS JUST REFLECTIVE OF AN
UNCERTAIN YEAR WHERE WE’VE TALKED TO MORE REPUBLICANS AND
TO DONALD TRUMP MORE THAN WE THOUGHT WE WOULD. I WANT TO REMEMBER OUR VERY
SUCCESSFUL TIMES WORKING WITH OUR EMPLOYEES, YOU HEARD THE
CITY ADMINISTRATOR MENTION THAT WE HADN’T HAD A CONTRACT WITH
OUR TEACHERS IN MORE THAN FIVE YEARS. AND WE SET OUT TO MAKE SURE WE
GOT THAT DONE. AND WE WORK WITH OUR UNION AND
TEACHERS AND WE WORKED WITH THE CHANCELLOR AND NOW WE HAVE OVER
4,000 PEOPLE WHO ON DECEMBER 22ND, GOT THEIR FIRST RAISE IN
FIVE YEARS. [ APPLAUSE ] SOME OF YOU MAY NOT THINK ABOUT,
HOW MANY OF YOU HAVE LOW TAGS? HOW MANY? WE HAVE TO WORK ON THAT LOW TAG
LIST BECAUSE ONE THING YOU GET AS MAYOR IS THE OPPORTUNITY TO
GIVE LOW TAGS. NOBODY KNOWS WHAT LOW TAGS ARE?
OKAY. WE ALSO HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO
WORK WITH, I KNOW YOU KNOW JOHN BOARDMAN, JOHN HAS A VERY
SPECIAL LOW TAG THAT IS REFLECTIVE OF OUR MOST FAVORITE
WORKERS AT LOCAL 25. THANK YOU, JOHN, FOR BEING HERE
TODAY. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: WE ALSO — HOSTED
MANY MISSIONS, MISSION TRIPS, AND THEY ARE FOCUSED ON HOW WE
GET JOBS AND HOW WE EXCHANGE INVESTMENT BETWEEN OUR COUNTRY
AND OUR CITY AND OTHER CITIES AND WE HAD VERY SUCCESSFUL TRIPS
TO CHINA AND CUBA SO THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP IN GETTING US TO
CUBA. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SOME OF YOU CALL ME
SOMETIMES WHEN YOU SEE ME ON TV. ANY OF YOU SEND ME A TEXT AND
YOU ESPECIALLY LOVE WHEN I AM INTERVIEWED BY FOX5 AND SO WE
ARE GOING TO KEEP THAT GOING FOR THE REST OF OUR TIME TOGETHER. BUT ONE OF MY MOST FAVORITE
TIMES HAPPENED HERE ON THE VERY FIRST TIME WE MET HERE AND IT
WAS A WOMAN WHO INTRODUCED ME. NOW, REGAN AND BISCUIT WERE
CUTE, WEREN’T THEY? GIVE THEM A BIG ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: BUT MY MOST — ONE OF
MY MOST FAVORITE TIMES WAS WHEN A WOMAN WHO I HAD MET KNOCKING
ON DOORS IN WARD 6 AND SHE TOLD ME THEN SHE SAID, YOU KNOW,
MAYOR, I NEED A JOB. I AM STAYING WITH MY SISTER. I DON’T HAVE MY DAUGHTER WITH ME
BECAUSE I DON’T HAVE PERMANENT HOUSING AND I SAID YOU KNOW,
MA’AM, THE ONLY JOBS WE REALLY HAVE ARE KNOCKING ON DOORS AND YOU KNOW IT IS HARD. YOU HAVE TO KNOCK ON DOORS. SHE WASN’T AS YOUNG AS EVERYBODY
ELSE WHO WAS WORKING WITH US KNOCKING ON DOORS AND SHE SAID I
WILL DO IT. AND THEN I TURNED AROUND AFTER I
GOT ELECTED AND I SAID, CAROL, WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE? SHE SAID, WELL, I WORK FOR YOU. I SAID YOU DO? WHERE DO YOU WORK? AT THE FRONT DESK. FROM THAT TIME ON, CAROL WHO
REALLY NEEDED A SECOND CHANCE AND NEEDED A FRESH START AND WAS
WILLING TO WORK HARD FOR IT, SHE JOINED OUR MISSION FOR FRESH
START FOR WASHINGTON, D.C. SHE DIDN’T TURN BACK. SHE WORKED WITH US. THEN SHE SAID SHE NEEDED NEW
CHALLENGES SO NOW SHE WORKS FOR THE MAYOR’S OFFICE OF VETERANS
AFFAIRS. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SHE BECAME A
HOMEOWNER IN WARD 7. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SHE IS REUNITED WITH
HER DAUGHTER. [ APPLAUSE ]
>>MAYOR: AND SHE IS ON THE PATHWAY TO THE MIDDLE CLASS. [ APPLAUSE ]
>>MAYOR: AND THAT IS WHY WE DO THIS. [ APPLAUSE ]>>MAYOR: SO I WANT TO END BY
SAYING WE HAVE MANY CHALLENGES AHEAD OF US, ALL BIG CITIES DO. WE ALSO HAVE THE TALENT, THE
RESOURCES AND THE COMMITMENT TO RISE TO ANY CHALLENGE. AND I WANT TO CONTINUE TO ASK
YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT, YOUR PRAYERS, FOR ASKING US TO DO
MORE AND FOR YOUR WILLINGNESS TO ROLL UP YOUR SLEEVES TO HELP US
DO MORE. I’M MORE EXCITED TODAY THAN EVEN
I WAS WHEN I WAS IN 2015 WHEN WE STOOD HERE TOGETHER. I KNOW WHAT THE JOB IS, I KNOW
WHAT THE CHALLENGES ARE, I KNOW WE HAVE THE TALENT TO RISE TO IT
AND I’M READY TO DO IT TOMORROW AND THE DAY AFTER THAT AND THE
DAY AFTER THAT AND THE DAY AFTER THAT. GOD BLESS YOU ALL. [ APPLAUSE ] [MUSIC]
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