The federal government shutdown cost to the District of $47 million will affect upcoming DC budget talks

SHUTDOWN/DISTRICT | According to a recent quarterly revenue estimate prepared by the DC Chief Financial Officer, the 35-day federal government shutdown cost the District $47.4 million worth of revenue, challenging city officials as they prepare for upcoming 2020 budget talks on spending priorities and programs. (WAMU, 3/1)

Advocacy groups and Council members have been lobbying Mayor Bowser on how best to allocate spending in the upcoming budget – including increasing taxes on businesses and high-income residents to pay for affordable housing, homeless services, schools, and health programs. In a statement on the revenue estimate, Bowser called the shutdown “historic and unnecessary” but said it served as “a reminder of why we continue the work of diversifying our economy and making our city an attractive place to do business.”

RACISM
The ‘heartbreaking’ decrease in black homeownership – racism and rollbacks in government policies are taking their toll. (WaPo, 2/28)

Former DC Mayor Sharon Pratt Launches Discussion Series With Panel on Blackface (City Paper, 2/27)

PUBLIC HEALTH
– DC Mayor Bowser released an extensive plan over two months ago to cut opioid overdose deaths in half by late 2020, but key programs in the plan haven’t yet been started. (WaPo, 3/3)

Conditions In The DC Jail Are Unsafe And Unsanitary, DC Auditor Says (dcist, 3/1)

HOUSING | The most cost-effective way to help the homeless is to give them homes (Vox, 2/20)

TRANSIT
– The most expensive commutes in the US  are in Charles County in southern Maryland. Residents there spent about two and a half weeks on average traveling to and from work in 2017, and workers in Fauquier and Stafford Counties in Virginia didn’t fare much better. (Bloomberg, 2/28)

– The Montgomery County Council hopes to expand the “kids ride free” Ride On bus program to weekends to accommodate students. (Bethesda Magazine, 2/28)

LGBTQIA+ 
– A kindergarten class in Arlington, VA held a celebration of transgender students during last week’s Read Across America Day. (WaPo, 3/3)

– ‘A Step Backwards For Our Denomination’: D.C. Methodists Grieve Vote To Exclude LGBTQ Clergy And Marriages (dcist, 3/1)

PHILANTHROPY | A recent survey by Grantmakers for Education found that three-quarters of foundations said their grants go toward helping low-income people, LGBTQ students, immigrants and refugees, women and girls, and people with disabilities. (Chronicle, 2/28 – Subscription)


Groovy – in the ’60s and ’70s, West Hyattsville, MD was a hotbed for psychedelic, trippy music.

The (Almost) Daily WRAG will be back on Wednesday and Friday this week!

– Buffy