October 24, 2018

Dear Neighbor,

With the holiday season soon upon us, and with calendars quickly filling up, I want to ensure all Ward 4 residents save the date for the 18th Annual Ward 4 Holiday Party. This cherished community tradition will take place on Saturday, December 8, 2018 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at Lafayette Elementary School – 5701 Broad Branch Road, NW

As in years past, the party will also serve as a New Coat Drive to help keep Ward 4 youth warm this winter. If you are interested in donating a coat to a young person in-need, and would like to know what size donations are needed, please email Keiko Yoshino at 
kyoshino@dccouncil.us or call my office at (202) 724-8052. If you are interested in serving on the  event’s planning committee or volunteering, please contact Dolly Turner at dturner@dccouncil.us or call my office.

Per tradition, the event will feature dinner, a dessert bar with the delicious creations of Ward 4 residents, valet parking, and seasonal activities. I hope you will join us for fun and festive cheer in December. But first, have a happy Halloween and Thanksgiving!


Brandon T. Todd
Councilmember, Ward 4

Legislative Update

On Tuesday, October 23rd, the Council met with the Executive Office of the Mayor and Office of the Attorney General for their monthly meeting.

Executive Office of the Mayor Update:

  • Vision Zero. The Department of Transportation Director Marootian, briefed the Council on steps the Department is taking to address the increase of bicyclist and pedestrian deaths from last year. Their steps include: creating safe streets, protecting vulnerable users, prevent dangerous driving, and being transparent and responsive. Proposed solutions include improving driver, biker, and pedestrian education and re-education on road sharing and rules of the road.
    • For school year 2018-2019, there are 268 crossing guards at 140 schools, including all elementary and some middle and high schools.
  • Police District Realignment. The purpose is to align MPD’s district, sector and PSA boundaries to effectively distribute police resources, accounting for future population growth, economic development and community needs.
    • Ward 4 Neighborhoods impacted: Park View was previously in the 3rd District, will be moved into the 4th District.

Office of the Attorney General Update:

  • Protecting children from sex abuse. OAG is launching an investigation into the DC Catholic diocese after a Pennsylvanian grand jury report of six Catholic dioceses revealed over 300 priests had been credibly accused of sexually abusing more than 1000 children.
  • Protecting immigrant community. OAG is suing the Trump administration to get more information about an operation this summer that resulted in the arrests of more than 130 undocumented immigrants. The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) failed to provide records of the raids in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
  • Protecting student borrowers. OAG and 18 other states successfully sued Secretary of Education Devos last year over her decision to block the Obama era rule, known as Borrower Defense to Repayment, from taking effect. The rule was designed to help students cheated by for-profit colleges to get relief of their education debt.

Office of Nightlife and Culture
Last Thursday, Councilmember Todd joined Mayor Bowser as she signed his “Office and Commission of Nightlife and Culture Establishment Act of 2018.” He thanks Mayor Bowser for hosting a uniquely DC celebration, and The Park at 14th for hosting the occasion. He looks forward to the new Director of the Office of Nightlife and Culture being hired, and working with the Office and Commission to think strategically about nightlife growth and development as it brings vibrancy and energy to new communities.

Presentation of Ceremonial Resolution to Robert Hooks
Last Thursday, Councilmember Todd presented a Ceremonial Resolution honoring Robert Hooks, founder of the DC Black Repertory Theatre Company, as they celebrate their 47th Anniversary. As a native Washingtonian and famed actor, Robert Hooks brings great pride to DC, and Councilmember Todd was honored to acknowledge his contributions to Black theater in the District of Columbia. 

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.
  • “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 was active celebrating community and enjoying the crisp fall weather all across Ward 4 this past week. Last Thursday, he marched with the Roosevelt Senior High School Rough Riders at their homecoming parade. This past Saturday, he enjoyed the Fall Festivals at Lafayette and Shepherd Elementary Schools.  

Councilmember Todd Cooks For A Cause


Last Saturday, Councilmember Todd competed against local celebrities in the “Pancake Battle” to benefit Generation Hope, a local non-profit that helps teen parents become college graduates while also helping their children become kindergarten rock stars. Councilmember Todd’s banana pancakes with coconut syrup came in a close 2nd place! The Councilmember was delighted to support Generation Hope and the amazing work they do for parents and children in the District of Columbia.

Mark Your Calendar

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.

Important Announcements

The Parks At Walter Reed Job Fair:
Friday, October 26th, 10 AM – 2 PM


2nd Annual Dia de los Muertos/
Day of the Dead Celebration:
October 27th & November 2nd


Join the Petworth Arts Collaborative for their 2nd Annual Dia de los Muertos/Day of the Dead Celebration on Saturday, October 27th and Friday, November 2nd. The event will feature altar making workshops, a movie screening of Coco, a student art show with face painting, and a street procession. Councilmember Todd is proud to be a sponsor of this great community event celebrating our rich cultural diversity!

RSVP and learn more on the facebook event:

MPD Participates In 16th National
Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative


The Metropolitan Police Department will partner with the Drug Enforcement Agency to participate in the National Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative. The purpose of the Initiative is to provide a unified opportunity for the public to surrender dispensed pharmaceuticals and medications to law enforcement officers for destruction.

Individuals may surrender any pharmaceuticals or medications on Saturday, October 27, 2018, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Collection sites for this event will be at all District stations:

 Fourth District Station
6001 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20011

Second District Station
3320 Idaho Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016

Community Conversation About Substance Abuse:
Tuesday, October 30th, 1 – 3 PM


In collaboration with The Georgia Avenue Family Support Collaborative, the Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency (CSOSA) will host the next 4th District Community Justice Advisory Network (CJAN) meeting as follows:

Date: Tuesday, October 30, 2018,
Time: 1:00pm – 3:00pm
Emery Heights Community Center
5701 Georgia Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20011

We will hold a Community Conversation in observance of National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. Please come to learn about important issues that affect children, youth, adults and families in our communities. The conversation will be interactive and productive, as we learn about different strategies that can be used to address this important issue. Please share this invitation with your family, friends, colleagues and neighbors as well as your entire networks. All are welcome to attend!

For questions or to RSVP, please contact: Elba Gonzalez at (202) 220-5480elba.gonzalez@csosa.gov or Hasaani Hylton (202) 722-1855 ext.234 at hhylton@gafsc-dc.org.


Upcoming Community Halloween Celebrations


Please be advised of the following community Halloween celebrations :

  • MPD Fourth District will again host a Halloween Safe Haven Party and Haunted House. Join them on Halloween from 5 PM to 10 PM at MPD 4D headquarters (6001 Georgia Avenue, NW) for fun, games, food, prizes, and screams! All ages welcome. Questions? Contact Derek Staten at (202) 270-1640 or derek.staten@dc.gov.
  • Chevy Chase Community Center celebrates Halloween on October 31st. Please join us (with or without costume) from 4 PM to 6 PM for games, tricks, treats and more. Located at 5601 Connecticut Avenue, NW. Questions? Contact Francesca Scott at 202.282.2204 or fran.scott@dc.gov.

Interested in the District’s Tree Canopy?
Fill Out This Quick Survey! 


Casey Trees has created a survey in conjunction with the Urban Forestry Division to better understand how people feel about the urban forest of the District. This survey will provide critical feedback to Urban Forestry Division in developing the Urban Forest Master Plan and serve as the first step of a greater conversation towards achieving the tree canopy goal of 40% by 2032. The District’s Urban Forest Master Plan will guide the management of the urban forest to sustain livable communities and public space, while also identifying key partnerships and potential opportunities to support that work.

Find the survey here: www.surveymonkey.com/r/UFMPS. The survey is 13 multiple choice questions and takes approximately 3 minutes to complete. This survey will remain open until the end of October.

Innovative Programs To Stop The Spread of Rats 


Are you concerned about the spread of rats and other rodents near your small business or commercial corridor? Please be advised of two innovative programs to deter pests:

The Humane Rescue Alliance (HRA) has launched the Blue Collar Cats Program, an initiative developed to find alternative opportunities for outdoor cats, or “community cats,” to live – and work – in our community. HRA is soliciting area companies that may have, or potentially have, rodents interfering with their business and matching them with a cat that will make that business their ‘home,’ patrolling the surroundings to keep rodents at bay. There are no upfront costs for businesses. All cats have been spayed/neutered, microchipped, eartipped, and vaccinated against rabies and feline distemper. The business’s responsibility is to provide daily food and clean water, shelter, and basic care throughout the cat’s lifetime. Businesses and homeowners that participate in the program will be assisted by HRA Community Cat specialists during the introduction of the cat to her new environment. Curious to see if you might have a place where a Blue Collar Cat can be put to work? Visit www.bluecollarcats.org to learn more and sign up to receive additional information.

Businesses can also apply for grants up to $80,000 for demonstration projects to help DC Businesses purchase/lease and install commercial waste compactor to install trash compactors, which will minimize sanitation and rodent issues in the District’s commercial corridors.  Priority is given to adjacent or nearby businesses that each apply and coordinate their efforts. The Program aims to help businesses and multi-unit residential properties, which are located in target commercial corridors, to: 1) reduce the sanitation issues (uncontained trash, loose trash and spills), which can attract rodents and pollute runoff that enters DC’s waterways; and 2) reduce number of waste hauling trips that contribute to carbon emission. In doing so, the Program will support the Sustainable DC goals to minimize the generation of greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the volume of waste disposed. Learn more and apply at: dslbd.dc.gov/compactor.


Beware of Utility Scams! 


Recently, the Office of the People’s Counsel (OPC) has received an increased number of reports about apparent utility scams targeting seniors, low and moderate income, and limited English speaking District residents. Based on information from consumers and discussions on neighborhood social media pages, these scams include people impersonating utility workers while attempting to gain entry to homes, robotic phone calls offering consumers reduced utility rates, and “special” energy rates for seniors.

Consumers also report high-pressure marketing by door to door “sales representatives” making false claims about energy cost savings, and offers made by persons at public locations such as shopping centers, or by telephone. Frequently, scammers will ask for consumers’ utility account information or Social Security numbers.

OPC Encourages Consumers to Remain Aware:

Beware of someone who says they are “from the electric or gas company.” Always request utility company identification. Unless there is a public safety emergency, utility companies rarely visit your home or randomly stop you on the street. Utility companies do not go door to door making rate offers. Third Party Suppliers (TPS) authorized by the Public Service Commission may offer energy services to District customers. A TPS company representative will provide you with proof of who they are.

These rules apply for anyone who offers you utility service

DO NOT PROVIDE your UTILITY ACCOUNT NUMBERS, SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER or other personal information. OPC recommends that you:

  1. Ask whoever is at the door what type of utility work would require them entering your home.
  2. NEVER give phone solicitors any personal or account information or agree to limited time offers
  3. Request all offers in writing and DO NOT sign any documents you have not had time to review.
  4. If you have already been contacted or have questions about utility services, rates, contract offers, or utility construction in your neighborhood, contact OPC at (202) 727-3071 to talk with a Consumer Outreach Specialist.

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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