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City Services: Your Dollars at Work

If you live in Takoma Park and pay taxes, you have probably asked yourself, “what do my taxes pay for?” The City provides a vast array of services and programs that help make our community a better and safer place for everyone. Below is a list of just some of the key ways that we put your tax dollars to work.

  • Full service Police Department, including crossing guards and neighborhood service/code enforcement (development and control of local environmental and sustainability laws which requires education and enforcement: Safe Grow, plastic bag ban, polystyrene ban, tree ordinance)
  • Public Works services, including:
    • sidewalk repair and installation, road repair and resurfacing, traffic calming
    • tree and canopy protection, tree maintenance
    • trash collection, recycling, food waste collection, leaf collection/mulch, electronics recycling
    • stormwater and erosion control
    • right-of-way maintenance, landscaping/gardens
    • maintenance of City facilities
    • electronic recycling drop off,
    • civil engineering services
    • construction project management
    • snow removal
  • Sustainability/energy efficiency programs
  • Rent stabilization and other affordable housing initiatives such as a down payment assistance program
  • Tenant services and advocacy (City contracts with County for code enforcement of multi-family buildings; City provides direct assistance to tenants to create Tenant Associations and work with tenants to address/resolve issues between tenants and landlords/management companies)
  • Parking management and enforcement
  • Recreation programs and services, including sports leagues and summer camps; scholarships for low-income residents and seniors, funding free summer camp and summer jobs program for teens
  • Childcare programs (for before and after school)
  • Maintenance of City parks, pavilions and athletic fields
  • Library  with extensive collections of print and digital resources for all ages, associated programs for children and adults (early literacy, reading readiness for ESL parents, book discussion groups, Spanish and French language programs, MOOC discussion groups, Caldecott Club, Comics Jam, regular visits from renowned authors and illustrators), and public access computers with dedicated staff
  • City festivals, parades and events (Celebrate Takoma, Monster Bash, Egg Hunt, Independence Day, etc.)
  • Meeting rooms and other public space, including computer labs, media center, arts room, dance room, senior room, teen lounge, and game room
  • Community grants and partnership programs to provide funds for area service providers to address issues like food scarcity, youth success (summer lunch and learn program; mentorship), and recreation
  • Public Arts and Humanities programs
  • Communications/City TV – online and cable programs and broadcasting, City Newsletter, maintenance of website, social media
  • Legislative advocacy at county and state levels
  • Passport services
  • Notary services
  • Administering local elections which have extended voting rights to 16 and 17 year olds and non-citizens inspiring policy changes in other cities
  • Support for local business associations to promote amenities in the City
  • Internal services: Information Technology (which also supports outward facing technology like computer labs), Human Resources, Finance, Legal, etc.
  • Support for resident boards and commissions
  • Emergency funds to help residents who may need help one time to pay rent, buy food etc.; also have a Tree Fund for assistance to help residents who need to remove a dangerous tree but cannot afford it (we also provide assistance for those who qualify to reduce their property taxes)
  • Racial equity work

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