Washington, DC (June 3, 2019) – Today, DC Vote along with 64 national, regional, and local groups, collectively representing millions of Americans, delivered a letter to the United States Congress urging the Appropriations Committees to maintain the District of Columbia FY 2020 Appropriations Bill as introduced. The letter details the effects any amendments to the FY’20 Spending Bill will have on the decisions made by the 700,000 residents of the District of Columbia and their locally-elected leaders.
“We call on Congress to respect the self-governance and local autonomy of the District of Columbia by resisting adding any “riders” to the budget that undermines the work of our locally-elected council members and the people of the District of Columbia,” said Barbara Helmick, Director of Programs, DC Vote. “Sixty-four organizations believe that any attempt to undermine local decisions by the federal government is just utterly wrong.”
Specifically, the collective group believes “such riders would have a grave impact on criminal justice reform, local budget control, gun violence prevention, end-of-life medical decisions, and reproductive freedom. These riders usurp the autonomy granted to the District and our elected Mayor and Council and overstep the original intent of both the creation of the District and the Home Rule Act.”
“Until residents of the District of Columbia achieve full equality through Statehood, we expect Congress to allow District residents to manage their own affairs without interference,” said Helmick.