October 10, 2018

Dear Neighbor,

At the October 2nd legislative meeting, the Council unanimously passed the final vote on my legislation that establishes a new DC Office of Nightlife and Culture within the Executive Office of the Mayor. This office will help ensure that as the District’s nightlife and culture economy expands and enters new areas of the District, that this growth takes place in a responsible and coordinated fashion. The Office will serve as a central liaison and after-hours point of contact to work with DC Government agencies, Advisory Neighborhood Commissions, and other neighborhood stakeholders to help address concerns such as noise, traffic, litter, and public safety. This office will also foster nightlife and culture by helping new and existing establishments cut through red tape. Additionally, the legislation establishes a Commission on Nightlife and Culture, comprised of government, private-sector and community representatives to advise the Office, the Mayor, the Council, and the public on how to improve policies and laws that affect nightlife establishments.

The District’s Nightlife and culture economy is booming. DC’s hospitality industry accounted for 80,000 jobs as of May 2017, having grown 6 percent from the prior year. This office will help coordinate the continued growth of nightlife and culture, which is so much more than bars and clubs, but also restaurants, art, fashion, music, theater, sports, and recreation. Importantly, the office will not have taxation or regulatory authority — it will only serve as a resource for businesses and the community, and will be open for business when other agencies are not.

I am delighted to report that the Executive is already accepting applications to lead the office. If you think you would excel as the first Director of the Office of Nightlife and Culture, I encourage you to apply with the Mayor’s Office of Talent and Appointment. I also invite you to join me as Mayor Bowser officially signs the Office and Commission on Nightlife and Culture Establishment Act of 2018 into law: Thursday, October 18th, 5:00 PM, The Park at 14th (920 14th Street, NW).

I am proud to have led the charge on establishing this new office to help guide the District’s growing nightlife and culture economy into the future. I look forward to the office and commission playing a positive and constructive role in the governance of our city.


Brandon T. Todd
Councilmember, Ward 4

Legislative Update

Committee of the Whole & Legislative Meeting: On Tuesday, October 16th, the Council will meet in room 500 of the John A. Wilson Building for their monthly Committee of the Whole and additional Legislative Meeting.

This week, Councilmember Todd attended hearings for legislation he introduced, including the“Blind Students Literacy and Education Rights Act of 2018” that requires Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) for visually impaired or blind children, to include instructions in Braille, unless inappropriate; and the “Energy-Efficiency and Water Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday Amendment Act of 2017” that would establish a sales tax holiday for energy-efficient and water efficient appliances.

Councilmember Todd also attended and spoke at the Committee on Health roundtable regarding the closing of Providence Hospital’s acute services. Providence notified the Department of Health on September 14th and is expected to close the majority of their service on December 14th. As a member of the Committee on Health, Councilmember Todd is concerned that the closure of acute care services will have an unequal impact on surrounding neighbors, seniors, and low-income residents. He is also concerned about the short notice of the announcement and impacts on employment for those who work at Providence. Over the past two weeks, Councilmember Todd has met with a number of groups and residents and heard their considerable apprehension and skepticism about the closure process and next steps. The Councilmember was glad to have the opportunity to attend the hearing to seek answers for the Council and his constituents.

Upcoming Hearings: 

Monday, October 29
Committee on Business & Economic Development, 10:00AM RM500

  • “CleanEnergy DC Omnibus Amendment Act of 2018” B22-904
    • As introduced, this bill increases the Renewable Portfolio Standard to 100% by 2032, establishes a solar energy standard post 2032, and establishes standards electricity suppliers must meet regarding purchasing a percentage of their energy from long-term purchase agreements with renewable generators. It removes restrictions on energy efficiency measures. It expands the uses of the Sustainable Energy Trust Fund and also establishes an energy performance standard program for buildings at the Department of Energy and Environment. Among other things, it authorizes the Mayor to commit the District to participation in regional programs with the purpose of limiting greenhouse gas emissions and requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue regulations tying the vehicle excise tax to fuel efficiency.

Friday, November 2
Committee on Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization, 10:00AM RM500

  • “Senior Strategic Plan Amendment Act of 2018” B22-686
    • As introduced, this bill requires the Office on Aging to develop a comprehensive ten year strategic plan that shall serve as a long-term blueprint for the District. The plan includes an assessment of the data currently available on the District’s senior population, the senior populations’ needs, and the growth and decline in diversity of the senior population, among other things.
    • Those who wish to testify are requested to telephone the Committee on Housing and Neighborhood Revitalization, at (202) 724-8198, or email omontiel@dccouncil.us, and provide their name, address, telephone number, organizational affiliation and title (if any), by close of business on November 1, 2018. Persons wishing to testify are encouraged to submit 15 copies of written testimony. Oral testimony should be limited to three minutes for individuals and five minutes for organizations.
  • “District of Columbia Department on Aging and Community Living Amendment Act of 2018” B22-964
    • As introduced, this bill designates the District of Columbia Office on Aging as the Department on Aging and Community Living (DACL). The mission of DACL is expanded to include the prevention of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of older adults 60 years or older.

For more information regarding hearings or legislation, please contact my Legislative Director, Keiko Yoshino, at kyoshino@dccouncil.us or (202) 724-8052.

Week In Review

Councilmember Todd Celebrates Community Across Ward 4

Councilmember Todd had a very busy week celebrating community all across the Ward. Last Wednesday, he attended the Sitar Arts Center’s after school program at Takoma Education Campus. He was extremely impressed with the creativity and thoughtfulness of the pieces, and thanks the Sitar Arts Center for helping bring art to our young people from under-served communities. On Saturday, Councilmember Todd attended the Calvin Coolidge Alumni Association’s (CCAA) 32nd Annual Scholarship and Awards Breakfast to benefit Coolidge Senior High School students. Councilmember Todd thanks Terry Goings, President of CCAA, the entire Executive Board, and all who helped make the event so successful.

On Sunday, the Councilmember helped kick off the new Seasonal Farmers Market at the Parks at Walter Reed by ringing the ceremonial bell. The market will continue each Sunday through October 21st from 9 AM to 12 PM at the Parks at Walter Reed (enter through the Georgia Ave/Butternut St gate). Learn more about the market at: freshfarm.org/the-parks-at-walter-reed.html

Councilmember Todd Cuts Ribbon On Milton Gottesman
Jewish Day School of the Nation’s Capital North Campus 

Monday morning, Councilmember Todd joined Mayor Bowser and Jewish community leaders to cut the ribbon on the beautiful new North Campus of the Milton Gottesman Jewish Day School of the Nation’s Capital. He even enjoyed throwing the football on the new rooftop field! The Councilmember was very happy to help the school obtain it’s occupancy permit just in time to open, and he looks forward to it standing as a center for Jewish learning and community for many generations to come. Councilmember Todd wishes a hearty “Mazel Tov” to the Milton Gottesman Jewish Day School of the Nation’s Capital!

Mark Your Calendar

Oregon Avenue Community Meeting & Update:
Wednesday, Oct 24th, 7 PM, Chevy Chase Community Center

Councilmember Todd will be holding a community meeting regarding the Oregon Avenue construction. Mark your calendar for Wednesday, October 24th at 7:00 PM at the Chevy Chase Community Center (5601 Connecticut Ave, NW). The District Department of Transportation and DC Water will update neighbors on the ongoing construction work and answer questions.

Questions? Contact Jackson Carnes, Director of Constituent Services, at (202) 316-9078 orjcarnes@dccouncil.us.

Join Councilmember Todd For The
Sherman Circle Halloween Parade:
Sunday, October 28th, 4 PM – 6 PM 

Join Councilmember Todd and neighbors at the Sherman Circle Halloween Parade for Kids on Sunday, October 28th from 4-6 PM. It will be spooktacular fun for the whole family, including seasonal activities and snacks!


RSVP on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/483027852183443/ Or
Nextdoor: https://nextdoor.com/events/2496466?init_source=copy_link_share

Please note that this event takes the place of the regular monthly Sherman Circle Social.

Fourth Annual State of the Ward 4 Senior Address:
Thursday, October 25th, 10 AM – 2 PM, Riggs-LaSalle Rec Center RSVP TODAY


Join Councilmember Todd for the Fourth Annual State of the Ward 4 Senior Address on Thursday, October 25th from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM at the Riggs-LaSalle Recreation Center   (501 Riggs Road, NE). Come access information and resources from dozens of senior-serving vendors, enjoy complimentary breakfast and lunch, and learn how the Government of the District of Columbia is here to serve our seniors. We hope to see you there!

RSVP with Dolly Turner at (202) 724-8052 or dturner@dccouncil.us

Important Announcements

DC Public Schools Chancellor’s Update

Interim Chancellor Amanda Alexander shared these important DCPS updates:

2018 PARCC Results
We announced our 2018 PARCC scores, which showed steady improvement across all grade levels and in every ward. This year marked the third consecutive year of gains in our schools. Schools across all eight wards experienced gains in English language arts (ELA) and math. From Simon Elementary School in Ward 8 to Jefferson Middle School in Ward 6 to McKinley Tech in Ward 5, our students are making tremendous progress. Overall, 33 schools made gains of two percentage points or more in both ELA and math.

Pre-K to Graduation Policies
We also released updated policies and regulations related to attendance, discipline, graduation, secondary grading, and promotion to better support students and families.

At the core of these changes is DCPS’ commitment to crafting policies that are supportive, inclusive, and equitable. These policies have been shaped by the thoughtful feedback submitted by families, students, staff, and community members during both the spring engagement sessions and the summer public comment period.

To help navigate these updates, DCPS has created “Pre-K to Graduation: A Policy Guide for Families.” This family guide answers frequently-asked questions and provides context on the expectations for students, families, and schools.

School Year 2018-2019 Priorities
Every day at our schools and Central Office, DCPS staff works diligently to ensure that every young person is ready for college and career and to thrive in life. I have no doubt that our team of talented, diverse, and passionate educators and staff is up to the task. This year, we remain committed to the priorities in our Capital Commitment and are directing our full efforts toward three critical focus areas:

  • We are reinforcing our commitment to equity by ensuring that all students feel loved, challenged, and prepared. I am proud to lead a district that works proactively to eliminate opportunity gaps and invests in strategies that guarantee every student’s success.
  • Through a focus on Pre-K to Graduation Excellence and the implementation of our new policies, we are empowering educators and families to support our youngest learners all the way through graduation.
  • We are differentiating supports for schools on their pathways to excellence. We are building on our core improvement strategies focused on talent retention, rigorous instruction, and an engaging curriculum, while also creating opportunities for innovation in our schools that need additional supports.

DC Tax Rate Changes Took Effect Monday, October 1st

The District of Columbia Office of Tax and Revenue (OTR) reminds tax professionals, software providers, businesses, and others about tax rate changes that will take effect on Monday, October 1, 2018. The changes will apply as required by the Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2018:
For additional information, visit MyTax.DC.gov or call OTR’s Customer Service Center at (202) 727-4TAX (4829).

Prepare For College:
2018 College Fair – Saturday, October 13th, 11 AM – 4 PM,
Scholarship Boot Camp – Saturday, Oct 13th, 9 AM – 12 PM 

Advance registration required at: eventbrite.com/e/6th-annual-college-fair-student-family-educator-registration-tickets-50106433692

ALSO: students looking to secure college scholarships should register for  dynamic scholarship boot camp led by Marianne Ragins on Saturday, October 13th from 9 AM to 12 noon. Register and learn more at: eventbrite.com/e/scholarship-boot-camp-tickets-49701265824

Bring Your Bulk Trash To Roosevelt High School
This Saturday, October 13th, 1 – 4 PM 


Mayor Muriel Bowser, the Mayor’s Office of the Clean City, and Department of Public Works are pleased to announce Roll-Off Day in Petworth!

Bring your bulk trash and other debris to Roosevelt High School (13th and Upshur Streets NW) for free disposal in your neighborhood! Learn about District services too! If you live in the neighborhood and need assistance moving items, please call 202-442-8150 to RSVP for volunteer help.

Space is limited. No hazardous materials or electronics will be accepted. Please visit the Fort Totten Transfer Station for disposal of those items.

To learn more, visit https://cleancity.dc.gov/event/roll-day or contact the Mayor’s Office of the Clean City at cleancity@dc.gov or 202-442-8150

CVS Offering Free Health Services In Ward 4 


As part of CVS Health’s continuing commitment to help improve access to health care throughout communities across the United States, we are pleased to offer again this year in DCProject Health, our annual free health services event at the CVS Pharmacy in Ward 4.

Ward  4 Events
CVS Pharmacy, 110 Carroll Ave. NW: October 14th & November 30th, 2pm – 6pm
CVS Pharmacy, 6514 Georgia Ave. NW: October 18th & December 1st, 2pm – 6pm
CVS Pharmacy, 5227 Georgia Ave. NW: November 19th & December 2nd, 2pm – 6pm

Project Health offers an array of free comprehensive health risk assessments, including blood pressure, Body Mass Index (BMI), glucose and total cholesterol screenings. Once screened, CVS Pharmacy helps patients through on-site consultations with bilingual (English/Spanish) nurse practitioners or physician assistants who will analyze results and refer patients who require additional medical attention to no-cost or low-cost medical facilities nearby or to their primary care physician. CVS pharmacists are also available to conduct one-on-one medication reviews and answer any questions patients may have.

Project Health’s primary focus is multicultural communities and we especially try to focus our outreach efforts where we know there is the greatest need, like African American and Hispanic women ages 35-64 who may be uninsured and disproportionately suffer from certain treatable conditions, like hypertension and diabetes. That being said, the events are open to all consumers regardless of ethnicity, gender or insurance coverage and no appointment is required.

Disaster Insurance & Preparedness Seminar:
Monday, October 14th, 4 – 6 PM, HSEMA


Disasters can strike at any moment and your business needs to prepare. While a disaster is out of your control, there are steps you can take to minimize the risks posed to you, your employees, and to lessen the financial impacts to your business.

To empower District business owners, the DC Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency and District’s Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking are hosting a Disaster Insurance and Preparedness Seminar on Monday, October 15, 2018, from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. This seminar provides businesses with the information and resources needed to:

  • Be better prepared for disasters
  • Understand the types of insurance coverages available
  • Understand which insurance coverage is best for you and your business
  • Navigate the insurance claims process after a disaster

Pre-registration for the seminar is required by Friday, October 12. Register and learn more at: eventbrite.com/e/disaster-insurance-and-preparedness-seminar-tickets-50235987190

Ward 4 Council Staff

Brandon T. Todd
(202) 724-8052

Sherryl H. Newman
Chief of Staff 
(o) (202) 724-8052
(c) (202) 215-5455

Jackson Carnes
Director of Constituent Services
(o)(202) 741-5293
(c)(202) 316-9078

Keiko Yoshino
Legislative Director
(o) (202) 724-7774
(c) (202) 717-2782

Faye Caldwell
Special Assistant/Scheduler
(o) (202) 654-6421
(c) (202) 330-3033

Dolly Turner
Deputy Chief of Staff
(o) (202) 654-6406
(c) (202) 412-2024

Gary Johnson
Constituent Service Coordinator
(o)(202) 724-8029
(c) (202) 304-8123

Joshua Fleitman
Director of Communications
(o) (202) 724-8191
(c) 202-294-2506

Manny Geraldo
Senior Legislative Counsel
(o) (202) 724-8035

LaRoya Huff
Deputy Director of Constituent Services
(o) (202) 724-8106
(c) (202) 368-2518


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Office of Ward 4 Councilmember Brandon T.Todd
1350 Pennsylvania Ave NW
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