DCFPI’s Quick Guide to the FY 2013 Budget Process & Resources to Help You Understand It!

March 22nd, 2012 | by Jenny Reed

Budget season is back, and we’ve updated our quick guide to the budget process for FY 2013.  Tomorrow, March 23rd, Mayor Gray will release his proposed FY 2013 budget.  Below are some important dates and resources for District Dime readers to help you get a handle on the upcoming budget season. 

The Budget Is Released  

Press Conference, Friday March 23rd : After briefing the DC Council in the morning, the Mayor will hold a public press conference around noon 11:30 to release the budget.  DCFPI will be there, tweeting the details as they become available.  

Mayor’s Budget Briefings Around Town: Mayor Gray plans to hold budget forums in each ward of the District.  Right now, dates and locations can be found via Susie’s Budget and Policy Corner.  We will share more details as they become available.  

Budget Documents:  These will likely be accessible online on Friday, March 23rd or within a few days.  There are two main places to look:  

  • The CFO’s website, where you will find the proposed 2012 budget, as well as budgets for 2011 and prior years.   
  • The Mayor’s budget website, http://budget.dc.gov/  should have links to all of the proposed FY 2013 budget documents, including the “Budget Support Act”, an often overlooked, but critical, budget document.  The budget support act is the legislation that includes all of the statutory changes reflected in the budget, such as changes to the DC public schools per-pupil formula or changes to taxes or fees. We encourage District Dime readers to take a careful look through the budget support act because it often includes major policy initiatives.    

The DC Council Conducts Its Budget Oversight Process & Votes on the FY 2013 Budget 

Council Initial Budget Review Hearing: On March 27th, the DC Council will kick off the budget oversight process with a hearing in which the Mayor, Chief Financial Officer, City Administrator and Budget Director will be invited to testify and answer questions about the just-submitted budget.  While the hearing does not include public witnesses, it is a good way to learn more details about the FY 2013 budget.  

Committee Budget Hearings: From March 28th – April 27th each committee of the DC Council will conduct budget oversight hearings for the DC agencies they oversee.  The public is invited to testify at these hearings, making them a great time to advocate for programs and services you care about.  The detailed schedule of hearings can be found here.  

Committee of the Whole Oversight Hearing on the Budget Support Act:  On April 30th, the DC Council will hold one marathon public oversight hearing on the entire budget, including the important budget support act.  Sign up to testify early; this is usually a long one.  

Council Vote on the Budget: On May 15th, the DC Council will take the lone vote on the budget, and the first vote on the budget support act.  The second vote on the budget support act is set for June 5th.   

Resources to Help You Understand What is in the FY 2013 Budget  

DCFPI’s Budget Toolkit:  The FY 2013 toolkit will contain an overview of the FY 2013 budget, detailed budget analyses in key issue areas (such as housing and child care) and a massive budget spreadsheet that tracks funding from FY 2000 – FY 2013 so you can make your own budget comparisons.  Our “first glance at the budget” will be available the week of March 26th, with most other analyses available within two weeks.  Check out DCFPI’s website for more details.  

Budget Briefings with DC Government Agencies:  DCFPI and other nonprofits are working with a number of DC agencies to hold briefings on their FY 2013 proposed budget.  These briefings give the public a chance to hear directly from the agency directors and their senior staff about the key changes to their budget for FY 2013.  Here are the briefings scheduled so far.  We will be sure to let readers know as soon as other dates have been set. 





RSVP Requested?

Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF)

March 26th


DHCF: 899 North Capitol Street NE,  conference room 6130

Yes, RSVP by Friday, March 23 to Ianta Summers at Ianta.summers@dc.gov or 202-442-8018

Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE)

March 26th


OSSE: 810 1st Street., NE (3rd Floor Grand Meeting Hall)


Department of Health (DOH)

March 28th


DOH: 899 North Capitol Street NE, 4th Floor

Yes, RSVP and submit questions in advance to Jenny Reed, DC Fiscal Policy Institute, at reed@dcfpi.org by March 27th

Department of Mental Health & Addiction, Prevention and Recovery Administration (DMH & APRA)

March 29th


Catholic Charities’ Hickey Center, 924 G Street NW (across from MLK Library)

Yes, RSVP if you plan to attend, and DCBHA will ask people to submit questions in advance, once the Mayor releases the FY2013 budget next week.  RSVP and submit your questions to: dcbehavioralhealth@gmail.com

Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA)

March 29th


CFSA: 400 6th Street SW, Room 5133

Yes, RSVP and submit questions in advance, contact: Sarah King, Children’s Law Center, sking@childrenslawcenter.org      

District Department of the Environment (DDOE)

April 12th


DDOE: 1200 1st Street NE, Room 509

Yes, RSVP Chris Weiss, DC Environmental Network, cweiss@dcen.net 

As always, feel free to contact any of us at DCFPI with any questions on the DC budget or budget process.


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