This letter is sent to welcome Erik Wemple aboard in his new role as Loose Lips and to correct one of the last factual errors of his predecessor, Ken Cummins. Mr. Cummins’ final musings (1/8) opined that “Cropp tossed [Ambrose] a bone by also giving Ambrose’s committee jurisdiction over environmental issues, which previously belonged solely to the public works committee.” The Committee on Public Works and the Environment remains the Committee on Public Works and the Environment. Not a single word in the listing of the responsibilities of the committee has changed since the last council session.

The committee’s powers, as approved by the full council on Jan. 5, 1999 (as well as those approved Jan. 2, 1997), include responsibility for “matters relating to environmental management and maintenance, public space, highways, bridges, traffic, regulation of vehicles, the regulation of taxicabs, maintenance of public spaces, maintenance of public buildings, recycling, waste management, water supply, air and water quality, and wastewater treatment.” As in the last council session, the following agencies, commissions, and authority come under the purview of the committee: the Department of Public Works, the Department of Motor Vehicles, the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority, the Washington Aqueduct, the Environmental Planning Commission, the District of Columbia Taxicab Commission, the Soil and Water Conservation District, and District of Columbia Bicycle Advisory Commission. As can be seen, the Committee on Public Works and the Environment’s areas of responsibility remain the same.

I look forward to a new year that includes responsible and accurate reporting by Loose Lips. Again, welcome aboard to Mr. Wemple!

D.C. Councilmember At Large

Chair, Committee on Public Works

and the Environmen