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In this Ward 5 Report: Celebrating Black history in Ward 5, get the facts about the short-term rental housing bill, and upcoming meetings and events.
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Neighbors,

As we all know, it is Black History Month. While we are celebrating the significant contributions prominent African-Americans have made to the United States throughout its history, it is also important to recognize the phenomenal residents we have living here among us in Ward 5. Earlier this month and pictured above, I had the honor of presenting ceremonial resolutions on behalf of the D.C. Council to several members of our Ward 5 community that have made tremendous contributions to our community and to our country.

William T. Fauntroy was a pioneer in many ways. He served his country as a Tuskegee Airman and served the people of the D.C. region after World War II. In 1961 he was the first African-American civil engineer hired by the National Capital Transportation Authority and later he served as an urban planner for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority, where he was responsible for the underground train system.

Shirley Rivens Smith is a native Washingtonian who has served her community in countless ways that continue to this day. Ms. Smith dedicated her professional career to helping others, first at the University of the District of Columbia and later at the United Planning Organization. And during all that time she has been active in civic engagement, including serving in leadership roles in the DC Chapter of the NAACP. She is a former Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner and currently the president of the Woodridge North Civic Association.

Finally, I want to tell you about Thelma Doris Spriggs Fagan Hyman. Ms. Hyman is celebrating her 100th birthday this year and has not let her age slow her down. During her working career, she was a teacher at both Howard University and Dunbar High School. She is a committed volunteer with the Friends of the Woodridge Library; she is the oldest active member of her church, the 19th Street Baptist Church; and she has remained an active member of Planned Parenthood, advocating for women's health care.

I share these stories because it is easy to forget that history does not just come from school books and biographies. Much of our history is around us, and I consider it part of my duty to ensure those stories are shared and kept alive.

In Service,

Kenyan

Legislative Update


If you listen to the radio, you have probably heard the misleading ads from AirBnB mischaracterizing Councilmember McDuffie's proposed legislation that would set up a sensible framework to regulate AirBnB and other online home-sharing platforms. Let's clear up some facts:
  • This unregulated industry is a problem. From the 'de facto hotel' in Columbia Heights to a party house in Dupont, there are irresponsible owners taking advantage of the ambiguity in District law.
  • As D.C. faces increasing housing costs, there are commercial operators renting multiple residential properties using these online short-term rental platforms like AirBnB, VRBO and HomeAway.
  • This legislation would protect the character and integrity of D.C. neighborhoods and ensure that housing in residential areas is kept for residents and families, not transient visitors.
  • This bill does not ban online short-term rental platforms like AirBnB. This legislation codifies into law short-term rental housing in the District and clarifies the process to operate legally.
  • This legislation does not limit your ability to rent your primary residence while you are there. This law is written to impact commercial operators who rent entire homes they do not reside in.
Visit Councilmember McDuffie's website for more details on this legislation and to download all the facts in one simple page.

Kenyan in the Community

Councilmember McDuffie speaks at a rally outside the U.S. House of Representatives, watch a video of his remarks here.
Councilmember McDuffie was a guest on the Kojo Nnamdi Show earlier this month talking about his Short-Term Rental Housing bill. Listen to the show here.
Councilmember McDuffie attends the February South Woodridge Civic Association.
Councilmember McDuffie speaks to a gathering of pastors from around D.C.

Sign-Up for the Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program

Applications for the Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (MBSYEP) are now being accepted at summerjobs.dc.gov. MBSYEP is a program that provides District youth ages 14 to 24 with enriching and constructive summer work experiences through subsidized placements in the private and public sectors. The MBSYEP is open to youth from between 14 and 24 years of age and provides summer work experience. This year, the program runs from June 26 - August 4, 2017.

Pepco Rate Increase Proposed -- Public Input Sought

The District of Columbia Public Service Commission has received a request from Pepco to increase electricity rates for District of Columbia residents. DC PSC is holding four public hearings to get input on this request for a rate increase. There is one hearing here in Ward 5, but residents are encouraged to testify at any of the hearings

Ward 5 Hearing:
DATE: Wednesday, March 1, 2017
TIME: 6:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Providence Hospital, Ross Auditorium
1150 Varnum Street NE


Other hearings:
DATE: Thursday, February 23, 2017
TIME: 6:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Allen AME Church, 2498 Alabama Avenue, SE          

DATE: Saturday, March 4, 2017
TIME: 11:00 a.m.
LOCATION: D.C. Public Service Commission Hearing Room
1325 G Street, NW, 8th Floor     

DATE:  Tuesday, March 7, 2017
TIME: 6:00 p.m.
LOCATION: D.C. Public Service Commission Hearing Room
1325 G Street, NW, 8th Floor

New York Ave Streetscape and Trail Project Meeting - Feb 23


District Department of Transportation (DDOT) invites you to a public meeting where staff will discuss the New York Avenue Streetscape and Trail Project. A brief presentation about the project will be given at 6:30pm. The purpose of this project is to develop implementable design solutions for a streetscape and trail targeting multimodal, safety and aesthetic improvements along New York Avenue, NE. DDOT will present design concepts and gather comments from the community at this public meeting. Link

DATE: Thursday, February 23, 2017
TIME: 6:00-8:00pm (brief presentation at 6:30pm)
LOCATION: Gallaudet University, Student Academic Center - SAC, 800 Florida Avenue NE

District Leadership Program - Paid Internship Opportunity

The District of Columbia Government’s Department of Human Resources (DCHR) is once again proud to announce its District Leadership Program (DLP). The DLP is an internship program designed to provide tomorrow’s leaders with the knowledge, tools, skills, and experiences that can be readily applied to their future challenges and pursuits, whether personal or professional.

Program will operate from May 30th to August 18th. All applicants must be available as of May 16th. It is a full time experience, Monday thru Friday, 40 hours per week. The deadline to apply is April 21, 2017.

For full information and to apply, visit the DCHR website.
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