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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
State of the Unions
Good morning sweet readers! It’s Thursday, and Washington City Paper is back with a brand new edition. LL wrote this week’s cover story, which takes a look at the how the District has reacted to its own version of dynastic politics in the form of Council Chairman Kwame “Fully Loaded” Brown, Councilmembers Michael Brown and Harry Thomas Jr. “On the one hand, there’s a fealty to history—in the District’s case, to the noble movement that enabled home rule. … On the other hand, there’s the notion that running a municipal government is inherently nonidealistic. … Growing up, these sons were liable to have learned just as much about the short-term art of the deal as about the long-term arc of justice; politics, as the cliché goes, is the art of the possible. It’s a lesson their critics say they’ve overlearned.” LL also checks in with the city’s public sector unions, who got behind Mayor Vince Gray in a big way last year, to see how things have changed, or not changed, under the new administration. Also, Dave McKenna reports on the 50th anniversary of protests over the Washington Redskins’ lily-white roster. Money quote about former owner George Preston Marshall: “The guy hated everybody but the whores.”
AFTER THE JUMP: More Councilmembers Oppose Online Gambling; Bond Downgrade?; Jobs Plan Panned…
“Sleight of Hand”: Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser becomes the second councilmember in as many days to be quoted in a newspaper saying that the way Councilmember Michael Brown got the council to approve an online gambling provision was a “sleight of hand.” Bowser and Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans also express consternation to TWT that the inspector general apparently hasn’t investigated the way the lottery contract was awarded. The Times has more on lottery contractor Intralot’s plans to hire new positions for when/if online gambling gets started.
Finger Pointing: Post columnist Robert McCartney gives voice to CFO Nat Gandhi‘s concerns of a possible Wall Street bond rating downgrade because 1) the District isn’t replenishing its reserves fast enough and 2) because there’s no articulated plan for what to do with the city-owned United Medical Center. Notably, Council Chairman Kwame “Fully Loaded” Brown “fingered the mayor for the delays in reaching a plan for United Medical Center. ‘It’s the executive’s responsibility to deal with the hospital,’ Brown said, adding that the council is ‘waiting on a proposal from him.'”
Not the Best Jobs Plan: Smartypants LDP argues that vast amount of number crunching over how many D.C. residents are getting construction jobs at the Department of Homeland Security’s new digs misses the point. “Ward 8 residents shouldn’t be looking at construction on big federal projects as their best chance at a job. Although some lead to stable careers that pay well, the lower-level laboring positions are cyclical, leading to long gaps in employment. Within a few years, St. Elizabeths will be all built out, and people will be needed for positions working inside it, many of which require specific skillsets and security clearances—not to mention the other ancillary businesses the complex is supposed to attract.”
Pull Up Your Pants: Old farts Ward 7 Councilmember Yvette Alexander and Fire Chief Ken Ellerbe gave young job seekers a hard time the other day for wearing sagging pants. “Why can I see your underwear, son?” Ellerbe asked one young man.
In Other News:
- Attorney General Silent Irv Nathan wants in on the Dan Snyder v. City Paper action.
- WUSA 9 gets b-roll in a strip club, has mayor’s spokesman denying any connection to former drug kingpin accused of stealing city AIDS funding.
- Wanna open a pot shop in the District? Gotta sign a waiver saying you’re a federal criminal.
Gray sked: Set visit to USA Networks’ Covert Affairs at 3:45 p.m.
Council sked: Former Ward 6 Councilmember Nadine Winter lies in state at Wilson Building from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.