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Dear neighbor,

Last week, Mayor Muriel Bowser presented her proposed Fiscal Year 2025 budget and financial plan. The District is required to balance its budget over a four-year period. The budgets for FY25 and the three following years are challenging because of expiring federal stimulus dollars from the pandemic, the need to provide increased support for WMATA, slower growth in commercial property tax revenue, a requirement by the Chief Financial Officer that reserves be promptly repaid, and increasing operating costs. 

The mayor presented her budget as “Strategic Investments, Shared Sacrifice.” It includes $21 billion in operating funds and $11.8 billion in capital funds supported in part by returning the Paid Family Leave payroll tax to its original level 0.62% from the current 0.26% and increasing sales tax by 0.5% beginning in FY26. Part of the approach her team took in crafting the budget was to avoid creating new programs or investments outside of a few areas and to draw savings from recently introduced programs that they deemed were not yet well-established.


The budget is now in the hands of the Council. As the title of her budget suggests, the mayor focused on investments in long-term prosperity with investments Downtown and accountability in funding the recently passed Secure DC legislation to address crime. I agree with those priorities. 

However, we cannot invest in long-term prosperity and accountability and then fail to fully fund opportunity and the safety net. As just two illustrations, the mayor’s budget subjects schools to unacceptable cuts, and in a painful example of choices made to balance the budget, early childhood education and childcare have taken dramatic hits, threatening the viability of this sector and breaking faith with workers and families. These issues must be fixed.

As we move through this budget process, I welcome your input. Reach out to my office and/or participate in the Budget oversight hearings which continue through May 2. Review the schedule and sign up to testify on the council site, which is searchable by committee.

Please know that my compass point throughout the budget process is to support priority investments in prosperity and accountability and to find ways to fund opportunity and the safety net.


Below, I have included highlights of the mayor’s proposed FY25 budget broken down by my Ward 3 for All priorities to provide insight into how I’m approaching the budget.


Matt Frumin

Ward 3 Councilmember

Fully Fund Our Schools and

Invest in District Youth

Delivering excellent educational opportunities is a compelling equity, economic development, and public safety imperative. We must ensure our kids can get to and from school safely, that once they are in school, they are fully served, including with access to mental and behavioral health supports, and fundamentally that our educational system provides a safe, nurturing, constructive path to a brighter future. Toward that end, we must fully fund our schools and support our educators with a renewed focus on teacher retention, enrichment, and advancement. 


  • $20 million for literacy instruction will help train teachers. Only 23% of students in the District performed at or above a proficient level in 2022. 
  • Sustained funding for Out of School Time (OST) programs can improve attendance, academic performance, and economic outcomes for youth and significantly reduce juvenile-involved crime. While I will continue to advocate for additional investments to make OST universally accessible, the budget maintains current programming levels.
  • $500,000 will support Educator Wellness Technical Assistance Grants.
  • Capital improvements for Jackson-Reed High School include track resurfacing and completion of repairs to the auditorium.


  • There are severe cuts to DC Public Schools. Funding for our schools needs to be a top priority, and the submitted school budgets are unacceptable. Our public school budgets need to be equitable and consistent, which is why I am working closely with the Chairman and Council colleagues to restore funding to schools.
  • Cuts to the Childhood Educator Pay Equity Fund jeopardize the future of our early childhood education infrastructure. We must reverse them for many reasons: the promise made to educators, the needs of our families, and the critical role affordable childcare plays for workers and businesses. 
  • A $10 million cut to the School-Based Behavioral Health program will create barriers to critical mental health supports and services that are proven to improve classroom environments, reduce absenteeism, and address trauma faced by youth.
  • Funding for the completion of MacArthur High School lacks resources for an auditorium and expanded cafeteria. 

Promote Affordable, Abundant Housing Options

The District should encourage increased housing production and support those who are unhoused or housing insecure. The proposed budget significantly cuts programs that keep or provide homes for District residents.


  • The budget sustains funding for the Chevy Chase Civic Core, which includes a plan for new mixed-income housing in addition to a new library and community center.
  • The Home Purchase Assistance Program, which provides interest-free loans and closing cost assistance to qualified applicants to purchase homes in the District, is fully funded.



  • More than $900,000 is cut from the Pathways to Housing contract.
  • $22 million is cut from the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which supports neighbors facing eviction, reducing their access to legal support and rent stabilization projects.
  • The budget proposal reduces resources for rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, family homelessness prevention services, and the family homelessness continuum of care.

Expand Economic Opportunity

While the proposed budget includes needed funds to support a recovery for Downtown, we must do more to revitalize our commercial centers across the District and in Ward 3. We must continue to invest in pathways for all residents to be part of prosperity in the District.


  • Investments in the economic revitalization of Downtown will create significant new jobs and generate revenue that contributes to the city’s operating budget in support of the entire District.
  • Expands funding for UDC in support of Pathways to Behavioral Health and the university’s Student Success Center
  • Sustains funding for commercial Clean Teams, which contribute to the success of business districts and provide employment opportunities for returning citizens and other economically vulnerable residents


  • Fails to invest sufficiently in critical improvements at UDC as it seeks to become the city’s flagship university and provide high-quality, affordable education. UDC’s overall operating budget decreases by $1.8 million, with a $4.6 million reduction in Workforce Development and Lifelong Learning
  • Repeals planned increases in the DC Earned Income Tax Credit and freezes the DC EITC at 70% of the federal level.
  • Reverses an FY24 funding increase for the District’s 28 Main Streets, which provide critical support to small businesses and business corridors in Ward 3 and citywide.

Invest in Safer Streets and Accessible Transit

We must do more to protect pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers in Ward 3. We can make roads safer for children, seniors, and people with disabilities through commonsense traffic calming measures. This includes ensuring safe routes to school for students, expanding multimodal transit options, and promoting sustainable alternatives to driving. Other parts of our city have protected bike lanes, while Ward 3 is sorely lacking. We must do more to protect all who use Ward 3 streets and ensure convenient multimodal transportation options.


  • Provides $200 million for WMATA to support our bus and rail system that affects the quality of life every day for so many residents, workers, and businesses. At the same time, there must be a consistent, sustainable funding model for WMATA.


  • DDOT has removed bike lanes as an element of the Connecticut Avenue safety plan but has yet to share the details of a new plan. We need to create infrastructure that promotes safety, efficiency, and accessible multimodal transportation for all users and not take steps that could compromise safety. The Council will need to take a hard look at DDOT’s proposed new plan. 
  • The budget eliminates Circulator bus routes without a clear plan for the WMATA system to fill the transit gap for residents currently served by the Circulator.

Foster Safe, Healthy Neighborhoods

The current level of crime is intolerable. People must feel and be safe in their communities. We can make neighborhoods safer by prioritizing accountability, comprehensive services, and responsible policing to keep our families and communities whole.


  • A significant increase in MPD’s operating budget will support civilization and hire sworn officers to meet current policing needs.


  • While the budget includes funding for small capital projects, it excludes funding for an overdue renovation of the Second District Station. The city has modernized or renovated schools, fire stations, and recreation centers; it’s time to invest in our police stations.

Support Our Seniors

Ward 3 is home to one of the largest senior populations in DC. We must fully support both existing senior services and neighborhood organizations working directly with older adults. Enhancements to programs will be helpful, but we must keep the momentum for a senior wellness center in our ward.


  • A $450,000 enhancement to the Dementia Navigators program will provide critical support to District residents living with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias, representing more than 17% of the city’s older adult population.
  • A $350,000 enhancement in support of the District’s 13 Senior Villages will help older adults age in place in their homes and communities.


  • The budget fails to fund a senior wellness center for Ward 3, which is one of only two wards without a senior wellness center.

Invest in Local Arts, Culture, and Recreation

Local arts, culture, and recreational activities create more connected communities. Our youth and young adults especially need recreational outlets that offer enrichment, provide them with safe places to be, and foster intergenerational ties. We should expand facilities and support athletic and arts activities for all ages.


  • Funds resurfacing the playground and replacing synthetic turf at Guy Mason Recreation Center, as well as tennis court resurfacing at Fort Reno.


  • The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities receives a $7.8 million reduction.

What’s Next

May 3: Budget legislation hearing

May 8-10: Committee budget markups

May 15: Council budget work session

May 29: Council’s first budget vote

June 12: Council’s second budget vote

Councilmember Matt Frumin

1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

Suite 408


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