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Climate, Faith, Health Advocates Call for DC Council to Restore Healthy Homes Funding

April 29, 2024

Dear Councilmember Allen,

We write to ask that the Committee on Transportation and Environment restore funding from the Sustainable Energy Trust Fund (SETF) for the Healthy Homes Act and reverse Mayor Bowser’s attempt to raid the SETF and deny DC’s most vulnerable households the opportunity to reduce their utility bills and improve indoor air quality by transitioning off fossil fuels. 

The SETF was established to fund energy efficiency measures by the DC Sustainable Energy Utility, with a focus on low-income DC residents. In the Fiscal Year 2024 budget, the DC Council amended the SETF to add about $25 million to fund the “replacement in a residential unit of all appliances or other systems, such as an oven, water heater, or heating system, that combust fossil fuels on site with appliances or other systems that perform the same function and that are powered exclusively by electricity.” The law was designed to fund the low-income residential electrification projects under the Healthy Homes Act.

In her fiscal year 2025 budget proposal and fiscal year 2024 supplemental budget, Mayor Bowser seeks to defund a number of programs focused on increasing affordability in the District, including the Affordable Housing Retrofit Accelerator and the $25 million set aside to help 30,000 low-income households upgrade their homes under the Healthy Homes Act. Amid DC’s compounding crises housing unaffordability, childhood asthma, and climate change, the District cannot afford to raid funding for DC’s most vulnerable families to lower utility bills, improve indoor air quality, and cut climate pollution. The DC Council must restore funding for the Healthy Homes Act.

Councilmember Allen, we greatly appreciate your strong leadership of the Transportation and Environment Committee. Over the last year, you introduced the Healthy Homes Act, ensured the bill was funded, and created a $2 million energy efficiency and electrification pilot for River Terrace and Deanwood residents. Families across River Terrace and Deanwood are enjoying new heating, cooling, and hot water appliances at no cost. But our work is not done. We must bring the benefits of efficient electric appliances to many more households across the District.

We understand that the DC Council faces difficult budget choices this year. The coalition of community, housing, climate, and faith groups that fought with you for the Healthy Homes Act calls on you to again stand up for public health, the climate, and DC’s overburdened and underserved communities by restoring funding for the Healthy Homes Act. 


Rev. André Greene
Washington Interfaith Network
Andrea Orozco
Interfaith Power and Light (DC.MD.NoVA)
Mark Rodeffer
Sierra Club
Janet A. Phoenix, MD, MPH
DC Asthma Coalition
Andie Wyatt
GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic
Selah Goodson Bell
Center for Biological Diversity
Brenda Lee Richardson
Anacostia Parks & Community Collaborative
Barbara Briggs
Friends Meeting of Washington Committee on Peace & Social Concerns
Barbara Zia
League of Women Voters of DC
Deirdre Joy
Third Act DC
Lena Moffitt
Evergreen Action
Beau Finley
Ward 3 Democrats
Naomi Cohen-Shields
CCAN Action Fund
Erica Williams
DC Fiscal Policy Institute
Vanessa Bertelli
Electrify DC
Linda Very Nooy
Citizens Climate Lobby DC Chapter
Marvin C. Brown IV
Jamoni Overby
Nature Forward (formerly Audubon Naturalist Society)
Oscar Villalobos
Green New Deal for DC
Marli Kasdan
We Power DC

Sunrise DC
Nicole Whalen
Green Compass
Max Broad
DC Voters for Animals
John Macgregor
DC Climate Action
Nicole Rentz
​​​​New Columbia Solar
Robin Dutta
Chesapeake Solar and Storage Association
Cliff Majersik
Institute for Market Transformation

Councilmember Lewis George
Councilmember Henderson
Councilmember Parker
Councilmember Frumin