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August 19: Fenty Talks Poverty

Today’s Event: Mayor Adrian Fenty finally responds to Defeat Poverty DC survey. I’ve been waiting for him to address the District’s faltering economy and for him to acknowledge the nonprofit sector beyond Peaceoholics. So he scores points just for playing along. Fenty provides forthright answers addressing unemployment (he touts job creation via the development of the new  convention center hotel and the opening of the giant new Carmine’s restaurant, which he mentions twice), and chronic poverty (he says the answer is education reform, of course).  Fenty cares!

Influence: Huge. I’ve been feeling uncomfortable in my prolonged Lean Gray status. And Gray certainly does not earn my vote with his own responses to the Defeat Poverty DC  survey. He ain’t exactly Mitch Snyder:  “As Chairman, I supported the dedication of a portion of the deed recordation and transfer tax to the Housing Production Trust Fund, but we need to find a more stable funding mechanism for this program, which has seen a two-thirds drop in its funding level due to the downturn in the real estate market.” Whatever.

Net impact: Leaning Fenty.

But: Fenty fails to mention the rundown conditions of the city’s homeless shelters. And he says nothing about how he’s going to house the hundreds of families waiting to even get into the shelter system. What’s your plan for that, Mr. Mayor?