Search

Ward 1 Update: An Alarming Deficiency

Councilmember Brianne Nadeau delivers her opening remarks at a roundtable on sexual harassment investigation.

The Committee on Public Works & Operations, which I chair, convened a hearing to identify missteps in the initial investigation of allegations of sexual harassment against the Mayor’s former chief of staff and deputy mayor for planning and economic development. I am committed to making sure that the DC government improves going forward.


Hello Neighbors:

Like many of you, I am frustrated – and appalled, to be honest – by the utter failure of OUC to answer the phone and properly dispatch emergency services to residents. Earlier today, I sent a letter to the City Administrator & Office of Unified Communications to express my deep concern with the persistent mismanagement of emergencies and lack of transparency, and the seeming lack of interest in fixing it.

The agency has a documented history of making critical errors, including dispatching EMS to the wrong address, misdirecting calls, failing to prioritize emergencies, and not answering 911 calls.

In the letter, I cite several incidents in Ward 1 alone in a short period of time. I’ve received a lot more emails and calls from residents in the past two months than I typically do in a year.

Residents must have confidence that when they call 911 someone will answer their call and will dispatch the services they need quickly. Right now, they do not have that confidence. And neither do I.

Even if the Mayor downplays the agency’s deficiencies and allows for obfuscation, I remain committed to holding OUC accountable until significant improvements are made.

In the letter, I requested daily staffing statistics for the past 2 years, an updated list and number of agency mistakes for April to June, and an immediate briefing on the changes, anticipated or enacted, that the OUC will take to correct these systemic failures.

You can read the letter.

Let me know what you are experiencing, and I will continue to press OUC and the executive on the urgency of fixing this alarming deficiency.

Brianne's signature

COUNCIL UPDATE

Securing the release of key public records in sexual harassment investigations

Last week, the Committee on Public Works & Operations, which I chair, convened a hearing to identify missteps in the initial investigation of allegations of sexual harassment against Mayor Bowser’s former chief of staff and deputy mayor for planning and economic development and ensure that the DC government improves going forward. 

I called the hearing to hold executive branch agencies accountable after the public release of the independent counsel report last month revealed that the Mayor’s Office of Legal Council – the agency that conducted the initial investigation – misled the public, failed to adequately collect and preserve all relevant evidence, failed to provide the investigation with the proper staff and financial resources, and failed to adequately consider the need to consult with or refer the matter to law enforcement. 

During the hearing, I secured an agreement from MOLC to provide key documents (DC News Now) to assist the District’s attorney general in investigating potential criminal behavior by the Mayor’s former chief of staff and deputy mayor, a day following news reports that the attorney general accused MOLC of impeding his investigation.   

The hearing also revealed (Washington City Paper) that MOLC is in possession of the former chief of staff and deputy mayor’s government electronic devices, including his phone and computer, which were not reviewed during the course of the initial investigation. It is my sincere hope that a law enforcement agency takes possession of those devices so that they can determine whether criminal activity occurred that we are not already aware of.  

As frustrated – and angry, to be honest – as I am about some of what transpired after the news of the complaints was made public, our focus must be on the future: ensuring that District government employees have confidence in the process. We have a report that sheds light on the mistakes that were made and provides recommendations for the future. It cannot sit on a shelf. It must guide us as we set a higher standard moving forward.  

It’s crucial to create an environment where District government employees feel confident coming forward with complaints of sexual harassment, knowing that they will be taken seriously, handled with care, and that action will be taken. 

The lessons from last week’s hearing (Fox 5 News) will further inform my legislation that would require independent third-party investigations whenever allegations of sexual harassment are made against high-level executive branch employees. I will do everything in my power to make sure not one more employee feels unsafe in the workplace of the District government.  

Read my opening remarks at the hearing


New tax commission would help us do more for District residents

Energy insecurity is a serious problem with wide-ranging consequences for the health and financial wellbeing of vulnerable residents. Shutting off a home’s energy supply can lead to difficulty sleeping, poor respiratory health, and food insecurity, and can even be fatal. That’s why I introduced the Utility Disconnection Protection Act to prevent utility companies from disconnecting electricity and heat for vulnerable residents during summer and winter months.  

The bill would also require companies to create payment plan programs for eligible customers and limit the amount providers can charge to restore power or gas after they have been disconnected due to non-payment to $25. Currently, utility providers can require that a bill is paid in full before service is restored, which can amount to hundreds or thousands of dollars.     

Our current bare-minimum protection, based on the temperature, is inadequate for many populations in our city, and this legislation would go further to ensure children, seniors, and individuals with disabilities are protected from the stifling heat of summer and biting cold of winter.  


Bill to protect DC’s vibrant musical and cultural history and guard against excessive sound

Today and tomorrow, the Committee on Public Works & Operations, which I chair, is taking up a bill from Chairman Mendelson that would address resident and business concerns about amplified public performances. The goal of this bill, and a companion bill that I introduced, is to protect the vibrant musical and cultural history of neighborhoods while also giving relief to the residents who have lived or moved here reasonable protections from excessive sound. 

The Chairman’s bill has existed in various forms for a long time. We’ve worked with the performance community and the Chairman to put in place rules that reflect the needs of the community. I hope that these hearings will move us to a reasonable and predictable set of rules, and also pave the way for a productive hearing on my Harmonious Living Amendment Act of 2024 later this legislative session. 



COMMUNITY UPDATES



14th St Road Safety Audit
 

Provide feedback and help DDOT identify transportation safety issues on 14th Street NW between Thomas Circle St NW and Euclid St NW. Zoom in to a location on the map, click, and add your comment. The comment map will close on Monday, July 15. 

For more information about the project, please email Christine Mayeur from DDOT’s Vision Zero Division at [email protected]

Access the map 


DPW Summer Trash Collection 

Now through September 6, DPW will begin trash & recycling collections at 6 am to beat the heat. On code red days where a heat emergency has been declared, collections will start at 5:30 am. 


Summer Ready DC Program Offers Free Energy Efficiency Items 

The Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia launched its annual Summer Ready DC campaign. From July 2 through July 31, the DCPSC will host six Summer Ready DC giveaway events at easily accessible DC Public Library locations. District residents can register and pick up a free energy efficiency item at one of these events, while supplies last. Information and additional resources will also be available to help consumers manage their utility bills. 

Register 


Fireworks  

Fourth of July is a time to celebrate, but it’s also the time with the most complaints about illegal fireworks. Most fireworks are illegal in DC. You can report the use of illegal fireworks or fireworks related complaints to the Fire Marshal’s Office at (202) 727-1614 or email: [email protected]. Safety tips from FEMS: 

  
1. Don’t buy or use illegal fireworks. Illegal fireworks include:  

  • Any firework that moves or shoots a projectile 
  • Any firework that explode such as firecrackers, cherry bombs, salutes, and roman candles. 
  • Any firework that emit sparks of flame greater than 12 feet. 
  1. Avoid buying fireworks from individuals selling them from their personal vehicles, gym bags, or back packs. Penalties for selling illegal fireworks:
  • Any person found engaging in the use or possession of illegal fireworks in the District of Columbia will have the products confiscated and could face fines and penalties starting at $2,000. 
  1. Only buy approved legal fireworks from a licensed retailer or vendor. Legal fireworks include:
  • Sparklers less than 20 inches in length, torches, box fire, fountains, cones, dip sticks, paper novelty items, colored lights, and paper caps. 
  1. Tips on how to safely use legal fireworks: 
  • Never allow children to light or play with fireworks. 
  • Be sure other people and structures are clear (50 feet) before lighting fireworks. 
  • Only light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from flammable materials. 
  • Use longer lighting devices (A grill lighter is a good choice) 
  • Never try to relight fireworks that have not fully functioned. 
  • Keep a bucket of water in case of a malfunction or fire. 

 

IN THE NEWS

FOX 5
DC Council holds intense hearing on Falcicchio harassment investigation

“It is my sincere hope that a law enforcement agency takes possession of (Falcicchio’s phone and computer), so they can determine whether or not any criminal activity has occurred that we’re not already aware of.”

NBC WASHINGTON
Former DC deputy mayor could face sex assault investigation

WASHINGTON CITY PAPER
Council Hearing Exposes Gaps in the John Falcicchio Investigations

CALENDAR

Public Works & Operations Committee Hearing 

Wednesday, July 3, 10 am | in-person and online 
The Committee on Public Works & Operations will hold a Public Hearing for government witnesses only on the following legislation: 

  • B25-0639, the “Licensing for Accountability of Management Properties Amendment Act of 2023” 
  • B25-0749, the “Amplified Sound Mitigation Act of 2024” 


Council offices closed in observance of Independence Day
 

Thursday, July 4 

Legislative Meeting 

Tuesday, July 9, 12 noon | in-person and online 

Camp Cardozo 

Saturday, July 20, 11 am – 3 pm | Harrison Recreation Center, 1330 V Street NW 
Camp Cardozo is a new health-centered, family-friendly festival coming to the U Street Corridor this year from District Bridges! 

Council Legislative Recess begins

No legislative or committee hearings July 15 to September 16. But we are still in the office to take your calls and prepare for the fall legislative session.

CONTACT US

Brianne K. Nadeau | Councilmember | [email protected]

Ariel Ardura | Committee Director | [email protected]

Abigail Boshart | Legislative Aide | [email protected]

Amanda Chulick | Legislative Analyst | [email protected]

Jerry Clark | Constituent Services Specialist | [email protected]

David Connerty-Marin | Communications Director | [email protected]

Kara Dunford | Communications Specialist | [email protected]

Estelle McKinney | Constituent Services Specialist | [email protected]

David Meni | Deputy Chief of Staff & Legislative Director | [email protected]

Maricela Nava | Deputy Chief of Staff & Scheduler | [email protected]

Sabrin Qadi | Legislative Assistant | [email protected]

Niccole Rivero | Chief of Staff | [email protected]

Related

It’s never just about the numbers – it’s about the people impacted by the programs and people funded in the budget. I remain committed to do the hard work to take care of our neighbors, to keep our city safe, to enhance our quality of life.

Most Recent

Search