As Chair of the Contract Committee, Helen has a unique vantage point on which to shine a light on Department of Education (DOE) contracts. When the DOE signed off on a five year $1.1 billion computer contract in February 2015, alarm bells went off. Working with Class Size Matters and Public Advocate Tish James, Helen convinced City Hall to pull the contract, rebid the work, and give the public at least one month to review DOE contract proposals. In December 2015, the DOE announced that they had bid the work out for a total of $472 million —saving the City $627 million — and they've signed a MOU to post these (and all) contracts a full month in advance of the public vote.
Helen continues to keep a close eye on all city spending. She is a member of the City Council's 12 member Budget Negotiating Team and she sits on the Finance Committee.