Brooke's Briefing: Judiciary Committee Passes its FY25 Budget

Posted by
V. Casarrubias
May 10, 2024

Dear Neighbor,

This week, the Council Committees, including the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, approved their Fiscal Year 2025 (FY25) budgets, the next phase of our budget season. I am going to share with you some of the critical investments we made through the Judiciary Committee, as well as highlight some of the other priorities I’m fighting for on behalf of Ward 2 and the District that don’t always receive the attention and focus they deserve.

Judiciary Budget Updates

On Wednesday, the Judiciary Committee unanimously approved its FY25 budget. The budget reflects the Committee’s continued commitment to make sustainable improvements to public safety across the District and to balance its top priorities:

  1. Improving safety for our communities and supporting our first responders;
  2. Enhancing accessibility, fairness, and oversight of our justice system; and
  3. Bolstering foundational needs to provide for safe and thriving communities.

I am encouraged that as of today, more than four months into 2024, violent crime has decreased by 25 percent and property crime has decreased by 14 percent when compared to the same period last year. While these trends are promising and suggest that the legislative interventions and budget investments from the last year – including my Prioritizing Public Safety emergency bill the Council passed in summer 2023 and my Secure DC Omnibus bill the Council passed this winter – have already made positive impacts on safety in our communities, the District must stay collectively focused on a broad array of interventions, initiatives, investments, and responses to keep all District residents safe.

Fundamental safety for all residents undergirds all other goals we are working to accomplish in the District. As a Committee, it is our obligation to continue striving to support efforts that keep all District residents safe, and I am very proud of the balance we were able to strike in this year’s budget to prioritize safety, justice, and community investments, particularly in a budget year challenged by declining property tax revenues and the expiration of federal pandemic-related supports.

In addition to these environmental budgetary restraints, I will note that the budget process this year with the Judiciary Committee was extremely difficult. In the eleventh hour, significant sources of recurring funds were decertified, which effectively cut the Committee's available funds to less than one-third of our expected plan for funds – funds I had anticipated putting towards Access to Justice grants, Victim Services grants, literacy coaches for teachers, and additional priorities of mine and my fellow Committee members.

While the budget we put forward today still honors our commitment to bolstering these investments, I am committed to working with all of my colleagues over the next few weeks to identify additional funding sources for these essential needs:

Status of Additional Budget Priorities

As you may remember, I sent my budget letter on behalf of Ward 2 to the Mayor in February. Shaped by neighbor outreach and engagement, I highlighted my top three priorities for the Mayor to:

  1. Fund the totality of my Secure DC legislation to improve public safety across the District,
  2. Invest in the short-term stabilization and long-term vibrancy of our Downtown, and
  3. Fund all of the District’s $200 million contribution to WMATA to ensure a reliable, affordable, and safe transit system.

I was very pleased that the Mayor’s proposed budget honored these three priorities – each of which are critical to supporting our communities across the District. Here are just some of the additional investments I’m prioritizing throughout this budget season that you may not know about:

Supporting Small Business and Downtown Vibrancy

Supporting Thriving Communities

Supporting Safe, Reliable, and Affordable Transit

Supporting Affordable Housing

While this summary is far from exhaustive, I hope it provides insight into the expansive work my Council colleagues and I are doing to ensure District residents can build safe, thriving communities.

The Council will hold its first vote on the full budget on May 29th, and I encourage you to reach out to my colleagues to advocate for what you’d like to see reflected in this year’s budget.

I will continue to keep you updated as I continue to work with my colleagues to ensure critical District programs and legislation can be implemented by DC agencies.

Lastly, I want to wish all of our wonderful mothers, care-givers, grandmothers, mother-figures, and expectant caregivers a wonderful Mother’s Day with loved ones. Our mothers form the foundation of our families and communities. A special Happy Mother’s Day to my own incredible mother, Dale. Her commitment, wit, intelligence, and selflessness inspire me every day.

Yours in Service,


In the last few weeks, Councilmember Pinto and Team Pinto have been out and about in Ward 2 and across the city, including to:

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