Friday, January 31, 2014

FY 2013 CAFR release recap

Clinton Yates adds WTOP to repertoire

You can get more of WaPo Lunchline columnist Clinton Yates on WTOP, per WaPo's Clinton Yates Gives WTOP His Take.   On January 30, FishbowlDC announced Yates's new gig, "My Take," to air Monday through Friday at 5:35 am and 8:35 am.   Topics?   According to the FishbowlDC announcement, Yates "will reflect on life in the DMV and beyond, addressing topics issues in sports, politics, and pop culture."

"My Take" begins February 3 at 5:35 am and you can listen live online.

Want to float an idea or discuss something Yates has talked about?   Email him at cyates@wtop.com.

Learn a little more about Yates in this pre-"My Take" debut, 10 questions with Clinton Yates, WTOP's newest contributor.

Take Your Questions to the Candidates

The Housing for All Campaign has launched meet-ups to solidify the community's message about affordable housing in the context of the upcoming elections.   From the effort's email:
Take Your Questions to the Candidates
We believe all District residents deserve decent, safe housing at a price they can afford, and DC government must invest in the programs that meet that need. What do the candidates think?
All next week we'll be having meet-ups to talk about affordable housing in our communities, volunteer, and prepare to engage with candidates on issues that are important to you. Come, meet other members of your community who share your concerns, and get ready to speak up for affordable housing.
  • Monday, Feb. 3 at the Petworth Library
  • Wednesday, Feb. 5 at the Anacostia Library
  • Thursday, Feb. 6 at the CNHED office
Learn more and Register (Update: Link fixed 1/31/14 11:50a).

Want to know when the Candidate forums are? Check out the 2014 election events calendar.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Housing advocacy training series starts Feb. 4

The Housing for All Campaign is offering a four-session training on housing advocacy.   The info:
February Housing Advocacy Training in Petworth
Date: Tuesdays in February (Feb. 4, 11, 18, 25)
Time: 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Location: Petworth Library 4200 Kansas Ave NW by the Georgia Ave/Petworth Metro

Learn to tell your story, practice giving testimony, and learn from your peers about housing advocacy! This interactive 4-week training is designed to make you prepared to speak out for affordable housing. Each training builds on the next, so please try to attend all four sessions.

Learn more. Register online.

Download the flier.

Get planning: #Play DC is having a meeting about Trinidad Rec

FY 2013 CAFR release Jan. 30

Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Chief Financial Officer Jeff DeWitt will announce the results of FY 2013 audit Friday, January 31 from 10:00 - 11:00 am in Room G-9 at the JAWB.

From the release,

BACKGROUND:
The Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO) is responsible for preparing the District's Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). The OCFO ensures that the CAFR is released each year on time and with a clean opinion from the city's independent auditors. A clean opinion indicates that the District's financial books are in order, that the CAFR fairly presents the city's financial statements, and that the results of the city's fiscal year operations are in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. The District's fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30. The CAFR must be issued by February 1 following the end of a fiscal year.

Gift disclosures from DC Council

On January 24, 2014, the DC Council's Office of the General Counsel released the list of outside gift disclosures for December 2013.   The information is available in CSV and PDF formats.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mayor Gray's Jan. 29 presser includes jobs-related resource announcement

Mayor Gray's regular biweekly presser Wednesday, January 29 from 10:00 - 11:00 am includes an announcement about new resources for job-seekers interested in the hospitality sector.   The event takes place at D.C. Central Kitchen (425 2nd St NW).

From the mayor's advisory:

WHAT/WHO:
Mayor Vincent C. Gray; Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Victor L. Hoskins; Workforce Investment Council Interim Director Kermit Kaleba; Hotel Association of Washington, D.C. President Solomon Keene and Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington President and CEO Kathy E. Hollinger will announce grant awards to D.C. Central Kitchen and the University of the District of Columbia Community College to provide job-training services for those seeking employment in the District’s growing hospitality sector.

BACKGROUND:
The job-training grants represent the second phase of the Workforce Intermediary hospitality initiative, which aims to provide needed job training for District residents as well as connect District residents to job openings in the hospitality sector. These efforts are part of the District’s Five-Year Economic Development Strategy, which identifies the hospitality industry as a key sector for job growth.

Good doers respond to call for hats, scarves, and gloves (but more are needed)

But the need is still there, especially with the colder weather today and tonight.   If your office mates, family or friends are looking for something to do for others right now, buy cold weather necessities and deliver them to United Planning Organization for distribution on the DC Shelter Hotline vans.   Deets below (flyer originally posted in Urgent: Donations of hats, gloves and more needed!).

Donate Hats

Monday, January 27, 2014

Mayor Gray's Jan. 28 schedule

One item on Mayor Gray's January 28 sked is his 9:00 – 10:00 am with the council for the regular Mayor-Council Monthly Breakfast Meeting at the John A. Wilson Building.

The rest of the schedule in on the mayor's daily schedule web page.

Check out bega-dc.gov

The new BEGA website bega-dc.gov is chock full of terrific information including the dates and locations of board and commission meetings, lobbyist paper filings, information about the upcoming BEGA meetings, and information about agency procurement in 2013 (calendar year, not fiscal year).

Urgent: Donations of hats, gloves and more needed!

Donate Hats

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Calling Wards 7 and 8 nonprofits

Nonprofits are encouraged to join their for-profit partners Wednesday, January 29 at Tech 101 workshop and networking meeting.   Deets here.

Hypothermia and Cold Emergency updates, Jan. 26

The most up-to-date information about the Cold Emergency is now available on the DMHHS website http://dmhhs.dc.gov/.   Today's updates include a notice from DC Public Library that the Deanwood site is closed because there is no heat.

You'll also find tips to prevent hypothermia, frostbite; FAQs about the Cold Emergency; and an update on warming site locations.   Check the DMHHS site regularly for updates.

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The oversight and budget hearing sked is out!

(Update 1/28/14 1:20 a: Reading is a good skill. Unfortunately, I did not use it before I wrote this post. The only info on the council website now is for the oversight hearings which start next week. Apologies!)

If you somehow missed the news, the DC Council schedule of FY 2013 and 2014 oversight and FY 2015 budget hearings is out!   As is always the case, the sked is subject to change so check back often.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Hypothermia and Cold Emergency updates, Jan. 25

The most up-to-date information about the Cold Emergency is now available on the DMHHS website http://dmhhs.dc.gov/.   You'll find tips to prevent hypothermia, frostbite; FAQs about the Cold Emergency; and an update on warming site locations.   Check the DMHHS site regularly for updates.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

How Growing Families Approach DC Public Education, a forum

Kids in the Triangle and Mount Vernon Triangle CID are sponsoring the forum How Growing Families Approach DC Public Education February 12 from 7:30 - 9:00 pm at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church (901 3rd St NW).   The forum will feature a discussion with DC public school leadership on the growing changes and needs of the downtown community as DC families navigate the changing landscape of DC public schools and public charter schools.   There will be a moderated panel presentation followed by a question and answer period.   Panelists are:
  • Kaya Henderson, Chancellor, District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Scott Pearson, Executive Director, DC Public Charter School Board
  • Michael Moss, Principal, Walker Jones Education Campus

The moderator will be Claire Schaefer Oleksiak, President of Mount Vernon Triangle Community Improvement District.

Direct questions to MVTCID via email.

Localized 2014 editorial calendar, a great advocacy and communications helper

The Lightbox Collaborative's 2014 editorial calendar is a great gift to advocates.

The only thing that makes this tool better is that it's been personalized for the District.   I've added some DC- and issue-specific items and posted the (see DC 2014 editorial calendar).   If your organization has day, week or month celebrations or recognitions you hope others will rally around, please add them to the DC calendar; Progress Notes did!   It's open to the public for editing.

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Release: Mayor Gray Announces Measures to Help the Homeless during Snowstorm & Extreme Cold Weather Emergency

Press Release- Mayor Gray Announces Measures for the Homeless in Cold Weather Emergency 1-21-14

Next Ward Five Council on Education meeting takes place in February

The Ward Five Council on Education will meet next February 18 from 6:30 - 8:30 pm at Lamond-Riggs Library (5401 South Dakota Ave NE).

Hypothermia Alert and other important news, Jan. 21

By now you've heard that we are in for one heck of a snow and wicked cold storm starting this morning.   The National Weather Service predicts temps in the teens with wind up to 30 mph at varying times between now and the early hours of Saturday morning.   Here's some info that's good to know:

Hypothermia Alert:   Hypothermia season is November 1 to March 31 and when the temperature and wind chill drop to 32 deg. F or below, the alert is activated.   The activation triggers provisions for homeless individuals and families; details are in the Winter Plan (PDF).

DHS and HSEMA notify the public when the Hypothermia Alert has been activated.   The message below is the one distributed this morning at 6:51 am:

DHS reports the Hypothermia Alert will remain on. The current temperature is 38 degrees with a wind chill of 30 degrees. Today's forecast calls Snow, mainly after 9am. Temperature falling to around 19 by 5pm. North wind 11 to 16 mph, with gusts as high as 28 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches possible.

Alert DC: Sign up for Hypothermia Alert messages (text or email) by registering for Alert DC.   The Alert DC system also messages AMBER Alerts, transportation incidents, utility interruption, and severe weather.   Other choices are shown below.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Kojo Nnamdi at Q&A Cafe Jan. 31

WAMU's Kojo Nnamdi guests at the January 31 at 2:00 pm Q&A Cafe.   According to program host Carol Joynt, Nnamdi's appearance is "So timely with all that's happening in DC, the mayor's race, and the recent sad trauma in his own family."

More information about Nnamdi and the event are on Carol Joynt's website.   Contact the Ritz Carlton Georgetown's Heather Foster by calling (202) 912-4100 or via email.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

State of Ward 1 Neighborhoods, Jan. 23

The State of Ward 1 Neighborhoods Invite

Boundary, Feeders, Student Assignment Forum with DME Abigail Smith - Saturday, Feb 8, 10am at Cardozo Ed Campus

A notice from the Ward 2 Education Network (@Ward2EdNetwork):
The Ward 2 Education Network invites you to attend a community education forum with Deputy Mayor for Education Abigail Smith on Saturday, February 8 from 10am to 11:30am at Cardozo Education Campus at 1200 Clifton St NW. In addition to her many other duties and responsibilities, Ms. Smith co-chairs the DC Advisory Committee on Student Assignment and the topic will be DCPS boundaries, feeders and student assignment policies currently underway.

DC has not undertaken a comprehensive review of its student assignment policies, including school attendance boundaries and feeder patterns, since the 1970s. Meanwhile, DCPS schools and public charter schools have opened and closed, neighborhoods have changed, and the city’s population has shifted. We know that families and communities want clarity, predictability, and quality school choices at locations that make sense for them.

The charge of the Advisory Committee is to incorporate public discussion, research, and analysis to provide the DME's office with fair minded, thoughtful, and informed recommendations. Specifically, the Advisory Committee will:

  • Review current citywide policies on attendance zones, feeder patterns and school choice
  • Formulate guidelines and principles for public school assignment and choice policies and practices
  • Listen to the community and serve as insightful interpreters of public sentiment, concerns, and questions
  • Develop recommendations and scenarios for revised DCPS attendance zone and feeder patterns
  • Make policy recommendations on how to bridge student-assignment and choice policies across DCPS and charter schools

Please forward this information to your family, school and community members. RSVP to: W2EdNetwork@gmail.com.

These meetings are sponsored and underwritten by the Logan Circle Community Association, the Dupont Circle Citizen Association and Foggy Bottom Association, in conjunction with the Advisory Neighborhood Commissions from Logan Circle (ANC 2F), Dupont Circle (ANC 2B) and Foggy Bottom (ANC 2A). There will be light snacks and babysitters will be on hand in a separate but nearby room to care for kids.

Now tweeting: @Ward2EdNetwork

SAVE the DATE – Next Community Education Discussion Saturday, Mar 15th, 10am

Mayor Gray plays official role in US Conference of Mayors meeting Jan. 22

Mayor Vince Gray has an official role to play in the upcoming US Conference of Mayors meeting in DC January 22.   Here are some details about the conference (PDF).

CM Gross's staff blog: Lack of transparency and gender equity on local boards

Anne Robinson and Darby Hickey, two staffers in the office of At-large CM David Grosso, recently discussed two problems with boards and commissions in DC in Lack of transparency and gender equity on local boards.   The blog post starts
While preparing for a December hearing to consider nominations to various Boards and Commissions, Councilmember Grosso noticed something— there were far more men than women under consideration for appointment. We found ourselves wondering if this was a coincidence specific to that day and those specific Boards, or if there was a broader trend of gender imbalance. We reviewed the memberships of all the Boards before the Committee on Business, Consumer, and Regulatory Affairs (BCRA) and then the 150 plus Boards and Commissions citywide. Our question was answered—there are significant and often egregious gender disparities.

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Mayor Gray on NewsTalk Jan. 16

Mayor Gray will make his regular monthly appearance on NewsTalk Thursday, January 16 at 10:00 am.   Tune in to the show streaming here: http://news8.net/.

If you have questions or comments, call (703) 387-1020 or email the show.

Empower DC DCPS Budget Training and Grassroots Voices Listening Project

Empower DC's DCPS Budget Training and Grassroots Voices Listening Project with the Washington Teachers' Union takes place Saturday, February 1 from Noon - 3:00 pm at Watha T. Daniel (Shaw) Library (1630 7th St NW).   Contact Daniel with questions or to RSVP for childcare; 234-9119 or via email.

According to the event notice,

The first half of the meeting we will be joined by Soumya Bhat of the DC Fiscal Policy Institute who will share info on what to expect during the upcoming DCPS (DC Public Schools) budget season, including tips for advocacy. The second half of the meeting will be the first installment of our -- done in conjunction with the Washington Teachers' Union -- listening circles to document the impact of education policy on families and communities. If you have been impacted by top-down education reform, please join us. Your story will be recorded and included in a national report.

Chat with Cheh Jan.18

Ward 3 CM Mary Cheh is holding the first "Chat with Cheh" of 2014 January 18 from Noon - 1:30 at Indique Restaurant ( 3529 Connecticut Ave NW).   The councilmember will be accompanied by Judy Hubbard, assistant director of constituent services, and Kelly Whittier, scheduler.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Mayor Gray's Jan. 15 sked

Mayor Gray's regular press briefing and the Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2013 Bill-Signing Ceremony take place January 15 from 10:30 – 11:30 am in Room G-9 of the John A. Wilson Building.

More about the mayor's schedule is on the mayor's daily schedule web page.

Committee on Education releases 2013 year in review report

The DC Council's Committee on Education (CM Catania, chair) has released Committee on Education: 2013 Year in Review (PDF), a summary of accomplishments in the last year.

Mid-Council Period reports are not required by the DC Council rules (PDF).   End-of-CP reports are and too often are not done.   The rule about the reports is here:

227.      COMMITTEE-ACTIVITY REPORT.
Each committee shall file a committee-activity report not later than 15 days before the end of each Council period that details the committee’s oversight and legislative activities. The format and content of the committee-activity report shall be determined by the Secretary.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Annual Point in Time takes place Jan. 29

The Annual Point in Time (PIT) count of homeless people living on the street takes place from 10:00 pm January 29 to 2:00 am January 30.

Volunteers are needed to join the PIT team.   Register with The Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness or the Downtown DC BID (David Riedman via email or Blake Holub via email).   More information about the DC BID efforts in Participate in the annual Homeless Count Jan. 29.

How Do We Promote Stability and Self-Sufficiency for Low-Income Families with Safety Net Programs? Jan. 16

From the Chapin Hall invitation,
Low-income families must overcome a number of obstacles in order to achieve economic self-sufficiency--they may have unmet needs for financial stability, nutrition, child care, health care access, education, or employment supports. Since the Great Recession, many low-income families have struggled with sustaining self-sufficiency and achieving economic mobility. At the same time, there has been a resurgence in interest at the federal level in family self-sufficiency research. Yet, in addition to their duties of promoting stability and increasing the safety net for low-income families, describing the nature of "self-sufficiency" presents its own challenge for policymakers. The idea of family self-sufficiency is broad, and success can be defined differently amongst policymakers. For example, is success achieved when families are able to make ends meet, are self-reliant, or no longer require the support of government programs?

In this forum we will discuss the nature of self-sufficiency and the ways different systems view economic instability. We will also discuss the present challenges and opportunities for researchers, policymakers, and practitioners who work to understand the ways that federal policies can affect income instability, and the relationship between employment supports and poverty.

Registration for the January 16, 9:00 - 10:30 am webcast is free.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Barry Farm Recreation Center closes for demolition; center to be replaced

The Department of Parks and Recreation announced January 10 that Barry Farm Recreation Center will close to make way for a new facility.   According to the release,
  • Barry Farm will be closed between January 10 and December 2014 so the current facility can be demolished and the new facility built
  • Normal Barry Farm programming will be offered at Birney School (2501 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., SE - entrance is on the parking lot side) starting Wednesday, January 15
  • The new facility will be 30,000 gross-square foot and include a gymnasium with spectator seating, multipurpose room, kitchen, fitness room, teens' room, game area, computer lab, a seniors' room and lounge
  • The outdoor spaces will include a synthetic athletic field for various sports, basektball courts, and more.   The outdoor pool will become an indoor pool with new features including lap lanes and a leisure pool.   The pool is scheduled to be completed this summer.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Mayor Gray enhances services for homeless individuals

Yesterday, the Gray Administration activated additional warming services for homeless residents (see Mayor Gray Announces Additional Measures to Help Homeless During Extreme Hypothermia Emergency).

Additions to the traditional services detailed in the Winter Plan (PDF) were

  • Buses located across the city in places where homeless individuals tend to congregate
  • A new Twitter account (@DCHypothermia) that will share Hypothermia Alert updates, information about helping the homeless, and directing residents to report sightings of homeless people in need of immediate shelter
  • A new email (uposh@upo.org) that people can use to make a report to the Hypothermia Shelter Hotline

Monday, January 6, 2014

Helping vulnerable residents, especially the homeless, in the wicked cold weather

Earlier today, Mayor Vince Gray shared valuable information with residents about the cold weather and how we all can help those who are vulnerable, especially the homeless.   Mayor Gray Encourages District Residents to Look Out for Vulnerable Neighbors and Homeless in Frigid Weather--Services Are Available to Those Who Need a Warm Place to Stay During Dangerous Weather has the deets in English and the Spanish translation from OLA is below.

GOBIERNO DEL DISTRITO DE COLUMBIA
Oficina Ejecutiva del Alcalde
Oficina de Comunicaciones

COMUNICADO DE PRENSA

COMUNICADA INMEDIATO: Lunes, 6 de enero, 2014

CONTACTO:Doxie McCoy (EOM) 202.727.9691; doxie.mccoy@dc.gov
John Stokes (DPR) 202.288.7275; john.stokes@dc.gov
George Williams (DCPL) 202.727.1184; george.williams@dc.gov
Dora Taylor (DHS) 202.374.9473; dora.taylor2@dc.gov
Darrell Jackson (DCOA) 202-507-2456 darrell.jacksonjr@dc.gov

Alcalde Gray Exhorta a los Residentes del Distrito a mirar por los Vecinos Vulnerables y Personas sin Hogar en el Clima Frio
Los Servicios están disponibles para aquellos que necesiten de un lugar cálido para quedarse durante este clima peligroso

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - Como se pronostica que las temperaturas del Distrito bajaran a niveles que no se han visto en la región en años durante las próximas 24-48 horas, el Alcalde Vincent C. Gray exhorta a los residentes del Distrito a velar por los más vulnerables durante este clima extremo- incluyendo a las personas sin hogar y a los adultos mayores de nuestras familias, así como a nuestros amigos y vecinos.

"El Distrito sentirá temperaturas esta noche y mañana que no hemos visto en años- y este clima extremo puede tener terribles consecuencias para aquellos que están expuestos a el aunque sea por un corto periodo de tiempo" dijo el Alcalde. "Por favor estar al pendiente de aquello que lo necesiten, y tomen ventaja de los muchos recursos que el Distrito ofrece para mantener a la población cálida y segura"

El Alcalde Gray menciona que si los residentes del Distrito ven o conocen de algún individuo o familia que estén sin hogar pueden llamar a la línea de ayuda para la Hipotermia 1-800-535-7252. Los residentes también pueden llamar al 311 para que se le comunique con los servicios apropiados para ayudar a las personas sin hogar en extreme frio.

El Gobierno del Distrito, a través de la Seguridad Nacional y la Agencia de Manejo de Emergencias (HSEMA), declaran alerta de Hipotermia cuando la temperatura alcance los 32 grados Farenheit o menos, incluyendo el factor viento. El frío extremo puede causar impactos significativos a las personas que residen en instalaciones sin calefacción adecuada y para los que viven en la calle.

Las Dependencias del Distrito activaran su plan interno para asegurar que los residentes, empleados, y el público estén protegidos del clima extremo. Se anima a los residentes y visitantes a quedarse en casa o encontrar un centro público disponible para mantenerse cálidos. Las instalaciones de la Biblioteca Pública de DC (DCPL), algunas instalaciones del Departamento de Parques y Recreaciones, y la Oficina para adultos mayores (DCOA) son lugares que el Gobierno del Distrito ofrece a los residentes en necesidad de mantenerse cálidos durante el día, pues se mantendrán abiertos al público durante los horarios normales:

  • Lista de los lugares y horarios de la Biblioteca Pública de DC, Haga Click aquí.
  • Lista de los lugares y horarios del Departamento de Parques y Recreaciones, Haga Click Aquí.
  • Lista de los lugares y horarios de y la Oficina para adultos mayores, Haga Click Aquí.

Si se producen grandes apagones en la ciudad, HSEMA puede activar un sitio DPR como un refugio de emergencia para el área o vecindario. Los refugios de calentamiento de emergencia son refugios nocturnos abiertos para personas afectadas por el frío con espacios para dormir, comida, aperitivos y asistencia adicional proporcionada según sea necesario.

Las mascotas también deben ser mantenidas en casa durante las alertas de hipotermia. Para reportar emergencias de crueldad y abandono a los animales las 24 horas del día, llame a la Humane Society de Washington al 202.723.5730.

Para más información, visit HSEMA's website here.

The broad strokes of the DC Council's budget schedule

It's almost budget time at the DC Council.   FYs 2013 and 2014 oversight hearings are held in February and March and FY 2015 budget hearings start in April.   The details we have so far are here:
  • CAFR released: January 31, 2014 (February 1 is a Saturday)
  • CAFR briefing for the DC Council: February 5
  • Performance oversight hearings: February 6 through March 7
  • Budget transmitted to Council: April 3
  • Mayor/Council budget briefing: April 7
  • Budget hearings: April 8 through May 9
  • Committee markups of the budget: May 13 through 15
  • First vote on Budget Request Act and Budget Support Act: May 28

I expect to have the first iteration of the hearing sked with details early next week.

Information about the budget process between now and the budget release is in FY 2015 budget development schedule.

#DCision14media.blogspot.com: A blog for all things election-related in DC

Now that petitions have been turned in and we know which candidates are on the primary ballot (Candidates headed to the April 1, 2014 primary), it's a great time for you to follow #DCision14 in the media.   This new blog covers media and social media related to candidates for office in the District of Columbia.

Please let me know (email me, susie.cambria@gmail.com) if there are news stories, opinion pieces, Tweets, Facebook posts, or Instagram or Flickr pics and I'll post as soon as I can.

Committee of the Whole Jan. 7

The DC Council's first Committee of the Whole of 2014 will take place January 7 at 10:00 am in the Council Chamber.   Preview the January 7 COW agenda here.   A legislative meeting will follow the COW; deets here, January 7 Legislative Meeting (Updated 1/6/14, 10:02a)).

If you can't make it to the event you can watch on the DC Council website, dccouncil.us/videos.

January 7 Legislative Meeting (Updated 1/6/14, 10:02a)

The DC Council's first leg meeting of 2014 will take place January 7 at 10:00 11:00 am in the Council Chamber.   Preview the January 7 leg meeting agenda here.

If you can't make it to the event you can watch on the DC Council website, dccouncil.us/videos.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

An important message from Safe Shores: Do Something New in 2014

Safe Shores―The DC Children's Advocacy Center recently shared this email, chock-full of learning and serving opportunities in support of abused children in DC.
At our final staff meeting of 2013, we talked about Davon, an eight-year old boy who’s in therapy at Safe Shores. Working with his therapist, he's learning to control his anger through deep breathing, counting down and relaxation techniques. Recently, in the face of a potential meltdown, Davon applied what he’d learned. No one was more surprised than his mother, who’d all but lost hope in dealing with his outbursts. For the support that enables Safe Shores to help Davon and other young abuse survivors learn important coping skills, we thank you.

And we thank you for yet another way you made an impact in 2013: fulfilling the holiday wish lists of over 340 children during our Holiday Giving Drive. That’s a lot of smiles!

Now, in looking toward 2014, we have a wish list of our own. At the very top of Safe Shores' list, we want every adult to do something to keep children safe. Engage. Resolve to protect children from violence and abuse, starting today. Here's how:

  1. Grow smarter about how to keep kids safe. Attend one of our free Stewards of Children trainings, where you’ll learn how to recognize, respond to and prevent child sexual abuse in our community. Preregister for our next training which will be on Tuesday, January 21 from 3:00 – 5:30 p.m.
  2. Give...your time, skills and energy. For example, coordinate clothing and book drives for children in need. Email us for more information.
  3. Get to know us better. If you haven’t already, please join us for one of our bi-monthly Coffee for Kids tours, where you can learn how Safe Shores helps child victims of abuse. Come for just an hour. :) Register for one of our upcoming tours: January 16 or January 30.
  4. Join the conversation. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay informed and be a part of the solution to stopping child abuse. To check out a recent radio conversation about how we can protect children, click here.

If you have other ideas about how you’d like to be involved, let us know!

Thanks to you, children like Davon are healing and feeling more hopeful each day. On behalf of everyone at Safe Shores, I wish you a year filled with goals attained, dreams fulfilled, and the joy that comes from helping those in need.

In the spirit of hope and progress for all children,

Michele Booth Cole, JD
Executive Director

Legislative Meeting Media Briefing Jan. 6

DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson will hold the first-of-2014 Legislative Meeting Media Briefing January 6 at 10:00 am in Room 412 of the John A. Wilson Building.   Mendelson will brief the media and public on major actions to be taken at the January 7 leg meeting.   Additional information is available by calling (202) 724-8032.

If you can't make it to the event you can watch on the DC Council website, dccouncil.us/videos.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Preventing Tax Identity Theft: A Panel Discussion With The Federal Trade Commission Jan. 16

Neighborhood Legal Services Program and DC Public Library are sponsoring Preventing Tax Identity Theft: A Panel Discussion With The Federal Trade Commission January 16 from 7:00 - 8:00 pm at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library (901 G St NW).   The event is part of National Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week, spearheaded by the Federal Trade Commission.

Panelists represent the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection, IRS Criminal Investigations Division, and AARP.

More information about the event is available from Heather Hodges via email (hhodges@nlsp.org) or by calling (202) 832-NLSP.

According to the event notice,

Accounting for more than 43 percent of the Commission's identity theft complaints in 2012, tax identity theft was the largest category of identity theft complaints by a substantial margin. In addition, the percentage of tax identity theft complaints nearly doubled, from just over 24 percent in 2011. Program participants will hear from a panel of experts from the FTC, the Internal Revenue Service and the American Association of Retired Persons who will also answer questions about what people can do if they become a victim of tax identity theft.

Wild Apricot's curated list of free Jan. 2014 webinars

Wild Apricot has curated a list of free webinars in January; it includes fundraising, volunteers, and effectiveness in a variety of nonprofit practice and governance.   My favorites are:
  • Developing Personal/Professional Online Networks (January 8)
  • Before You Hire an Architect: Reduce Costs and Risks, Produce Better Results (January 22)
  • Playing By the Rules: Creating an Effective Volunteer Handbook (January 30)

This list is on top of the offerings by Wild Apricot itself.

Public policy recommendations in need of implementation, remainders from Fenty transition

There are several issues unresolved from the recommendations made by the Fenty transition human services team.   Many were addressed by Mayor Fenty and more recently Mayor Gray.   I suggest candidates take a look for the unresolved items―such as the need for a comprehensive child abuse prevention plan―and adopt those that make sense to you.

Full disclosure, I co-chaired the team.

Human Services Transition Team Final 121906