The month of August was one for the books! Just last week, the District welcomed thousands of visitors from throughout the region and across the country to the Commitment March on Washington. The date of the March was significant as it took place on the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington, where the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream Speech.” The goal of the March was to serve as a historic protest calling for national criminal justice reforms. The District also commemorated the 55th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, which established that race, color, or membership in a minority language group would not be barriers to the ballot box, and additionally, the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed women the right to vote.
With national, state, and local elections now less than 60 days away, we must not take for granted these historical accomplishments and the significant efforts and sacrifices made to realize them. We must do all we can to protect the democracy entrusted to us. Earlier this summer, I joined my colleagues in passing legislation to make voting safer and more accessible. I also voted to extend voting rights to all of our incarcerated citizens. However you vote on November 3, whether by standing alongside your neighbors at the polls, by visiting one of the early voting centers throughout the District or by casting your ballot by mail, you will find more information on how to vote from the Board of Elections below included in this newsletter.
August also brought us the opportunity to celebrate the ingenuity of Black-owned businesses and their many contributions to the Ward 2 community and our entire city. From dining to shopping and everything in between, Black entrepreneurs continue to make the District a great place in which to live, visit, and work. Even with the dog days of summer coming to a close, let’s ensure that our support for these businesses continues! If you are looking for dining options, check here for a neighborhood list of the District’s Black-owned restaurants.
As we head into September, my team and I look forward to resuming the legislative session and continuing our important work in streamlining our unemployment benefits processes, supporting families and small businesses, and helping our entire community to emerge from the ramifications of COVID-19 even stronger. We are also excited to continuously engage you all during ANC meetings and other community events. This month, I also invite you to join us during our upcoming Ward 2 COVID recovery tele-townhall conversation on homelessness solutions, or our 7th Streetcar Free Lane listening session. More details have been provided below.
As always, my team and I are here to assist and support you. If you email us and do not receive our correspondence within 24 hours, please remember that we are resolving our technical difficulties and that our messages may have been sent to your spam folder. If needed, call my Chief of Staff, Genevieve Hulick at 202-262-1982. Thank you, and I’ll see you in the community!
Yours in Service,
The general election is now less than 60 days away. To ensure that you do not run into any issues casting your ballot, please review the information bellow.
On Monday, August 31, many families and students across the District welcomed the online 2020-2021 school year. We know that this time is particularly challenging as we continue to bridge technological gaps, but we remain committed to ensuring that every student has the tools to succeed.
Lastly, make sure your students sign into Canvas (http://dcps.instructure.com) at least once each weekday between 6:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. to establish a strong attendance record. Click HERE for more on attendance.
If your student(s) are enrolled in a public charter school, please monitor the D.C. Public Charter School Board’s website at https://dcpcsb.org/ for more information, including updates on individual school reopening plans.
Councilmember Pinto's September Outreach Schedule
Councilmember Pinto invites Ward 2 residents and extended members of the Ward 2 community, such as business owners, employees, and frequent visitors to three community outreach events.
Please register at tinyurl.com/PintoSeptember2020 to attend one or all or submit your questions.
17th Street, N.W. Bike Lane Update
On Thursday, August 13, Councilmember Pinto met with business owners along the 17th corridor to discuss their concerns about the proper implementation of the new 17th Street NW two-way bike lane. Each one-way bike lane will be adjacent to opposite curbs going north on the east side of 17th Street NW and south on the west side of 17th Street NW. The discussion centered on the portions of the bike lane from P Street NW through to T Street NW. * In a recent communication with our office, DDOT provided detailed responses to concerns around parking integration, commercial loading, no parking entrance zones, loading/unloading, stopping, and standing zones, streateries, transitioning commercial loading zones from daytime use to metered parking during the evenings, and the new bicycle lanes. Those who are interested in learning more about this development are encouraged to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
* This corrects a previous statement that the two-way bike lane will travel between Constitution and Florida Avenues in Northwest.
Newest Ward 2 StrEATery Open in Logan Circle:
In July, Councilmember Pinto worked with the Office of Risk Management to waive an insurance requirement that would have prevented restaurants from seating patrons on sidewalks during Phase 2 of the District’s COVID recovery. As a result, many restaurants are now able to serve residents while adhering to public health guidance issued by the Bowser administration. We are so appreciative for all of the hard work of the Department of Transportation, the ANCs, BIDs, and Main Streets, all of whom are working hard to get these outdoor dining options launched and continuing to run! These “Streateries” can be found in DuPont Circle, on 17th Street just north of Massachusetts Ave, N.W., throughout Georgetown, and now on P Street, N.W. in Logan Circle!
Real Property Taxes are Due September 15
Did you know that real property taxes are due on Tuesday, September 15? Likewise, the D.C. Office on Tax and Revenue has a number of real property tax relief programs that may qualify you for a reduction on your property bill. Learn more here.
SmarTrip App Launches on iPhone and Apple Watch
SmarTrip has launched on iPhone and Apple Watch to give riders a safer and more convenient option to pay their travel fares and load their SmarTrip cards. This feature works everywhere SmarTrip is accepted, including all 91 Metrorail stations in DC, Maryland and Virginia; all Metro parking garages and lots; all Metrobus routes; and all regional bus providers, including ART, DASH, Fairfax Connector, Cue, Ride On, TheBus, Circulator, Loudoun County Transit, and Potomac and Rappahannock Transit/PRTC. For more info, click HERE.
DC Tutition Assistance Grant (DCTAG) Application Open through November 13
If you're a DC resident, have a son or daughter 26 or younger with a high school diploma or GED and meet a few other requirement, the DC Tutition Assistance Grant (DCTAG) can help by providing up to $10,000 a year to participating colleges and universities, nationwide. For more information and to apply, visit dconeapp.dc.gov.