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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT—-“World Cup Roundup,” “Sex-Toy Maker Had ‘Nice’ Chat With Prosecutors In Wone Case,” “Examiner vs. Washington City Paper“
Good morning. Jeez, Fenty is really taking it on the chin. The boo birds are following him everywhere as WaPo’s Nikita Stewart reports on A1. This could be the sound of the summer: “Adrian M. Fenty wasn’t even at the Academies at Anacostia graduation ceremony in the District on Friday, but when the mayor’s name was mentioned, an unmistakable chorus arose: ‘Boo!’ many in the crowd shouted. Almost simultaneously, across town, where Fenty was attending a funeral for go-go great Anthony “Little Benny” Harley, his attempts to deliver condolences were nearly drowned out by a similar din. The taunts were so thunderous that Pastor Deron Cloud had to grab the microphone to calm the crowd at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center…. The chorus heard ’round some parts of the District is one of vocal dissatisfaction for the 39-year-old Fenty. It’s a far cry from the summer of 2006, when drivers honked excitedly whenever they saw him campaigning for mayor. Then, residents were as tickled to see the young candidate come to their doors as if a celebrity had dropped by with a sweepstakes prize. Now, Fenty is in a contentious battle with D.C. Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray, his chief rival for mayor, in the Sept. 14 Democratic primary. Supporters say that the criticism and boos are unfair, particularly because city services get high marks, students’ test scores are rising, and new libraries, schools and recreation centers have opened citywide. Fenty said he takes the boos in stride. ‘It’s part of the process. It’s part of being in elected office,’ Fenty said in a brief interview Saturday before he joined other candidates at a forum at the D.C. Democratic State Convention at Howard University Law School.”
Ah, yes every interview with Fenty is a brief interview unless he’s mishandling softballs on Fox-5. Zing! The only place Fenty hasn’t been showered with boos is WaPo’s editorial page. Zing!
Of course, Fenty was booed at the D.C. Democratic State Convention.
AFTER THE JUMP—-Gray trounces Fenty in a straw poll, Fenty’s bikes are stolen from mayor’s home, Gray’s record factchecked, group home controversy, and much much more!
STRAW POLL: WaPo’s Nikita Stewart, who had a busy weekend, reports that Gray thumped Fenty in a citywide straw poll: “Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray won a citywide Democratic straw poll for mayor Saturday with a whopping 703 votes. Incumbent Mayor Adrian M. Fenty drew 190 votes, followed by 75 for former television reporter Leo Alexander. Other candidates posted single-digit outcomes, according to the unofficial results. Seventy-four provisional ballots were not included in the totals that were released….On Saturday at Howard University School of Law, Gray volunteers blanketed the area with his blue signs in the morning. When Fenty supporters arrived in the afternoon, they had to scurry to create an equal presence with signs and stickers. Fenty was clearly outmatched and was booed, as well as cheered by supporters, during a forum for mayoral candidates. Fenty has struggled to win over many active members of the local Democratic State Committee since the national convention in Denver in 2008 when he missed the local delegation’s breakfasts there. In one case, he was the guest speaker and a no-show.” More coverage via NBC4.
MAYORAL BIKES STOLEN: The Examiner’s Bill Myers reports that Fenty has become a crime victim: “A trio of thieves brazenly made off with two mountain bikes from the Fenty family garage in the Crestwood neighborhood while the mayor’s around-the-clock security detail guarded the family home a few yards away, internal police documents show. The thieves, described only as three dark-complected ‘black males’ in police records marked ‘not for public distribution,’ left two of their own, shoddier bikes at the scene. The thefts occurred on June 3 around 7:40 p.m., while officers were on the grounds of the Fenty home, records show…. Missing are two one-year-old mountain bikes, said to be worth about $300 each, police reports show.”
FOLLOWING THE MONEY: WBJ’s Michael Neibauer reports that Gray’s campaign has touted several Fenty administration staffers who have donated money to their cause: “If the staffers thought their donations to the boss’s rival would remain anonymous, they were wrong. D.C. law requires that individual contributions of $50 or more must be itemized in the report filed by the candidate with the Office of Campaign Finance. Those less than $50 must be cited on a report of receipts and expenditures, but the donor often remains unlisted. That may be what Alan Heymann, public affairs director with the D.C. Water and Sewer Authority, thought when he gave $49.99 to Gray. But Heymann, former spokesman in the District’s Department of the Environment and the Executive Office of the Mayor, was listed, as were several other Fenty administration staffers (worthy to note that Heymann gave the same amount to the Fenty camp). There was, for example, $25 from Mark Lassiter, deputy director of operations in the Addiction Prevention and Recovery Administration, and another $25 from Kenneth Borden with the Office of Cable Television. One District employee tells me ‘fear of reprisal has kept me from donating to Gray.'”
GAY LOBBY: WaPo’s Tim Craig reports that D.C.’s gay community may play a powerful role this campaign season: “In what’s expected to be a tight mayoral contest, whoever succeeds in locking in the support of the gay and lesbian community may have the advantage on primary day. Because Fenty and Gray have similar positions on gay and lesbian issues, it could boil down to personalities.” And like the rest of the city, are still divided on Fenty: “After Fenty became the only leading mayoral candidate in 2006 to endorse same-sex marriage, gay voters flocked to his candidacy, according to election results from precincts with high concentrations of gay voters. But despite his support of the law, Fenty has yet to solidify the community’s backing this year. ‘The community is probably pretty divided,’ said Richard J. Rosendall, vice president for political affairs for the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance. ‘Fenty has done some things that are good, but the main criticism is his sense of style and aloofness and arrogance.'”
METRO MESS: Metro’s staffing increases despite budget crisis, fare hikes reports the Examiner’s Kytja Weir: “Metro’s work force will grow by 121 full-time employees under the pending budget, despite tight economic constraints that are requiring additional taxpayer subsidies and major fare increases for riders. The transit agency is slated to have 10,974 full-time employees in the budget that begins July 1, according to Metro, up from the 10,853 approved for the current year. ‘Increases in staffing are directly related to Metro’s commitment to improving safety and reliability and maintaining the Metro system in a state of good repair,’ Metro Deputy General Manager Carol Dillon Kissal told The Washington Examiner in a statement.”
A Metro official admits the Red Line isn’t doing so well, WUSA9 reports: “Metro, the Capital Region’s acclaimed transit system, may have seen it’s best days according to the chairman of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, which runs it. ‘Is it as reliable as it used to be? No, it’s much older. We are not a brand new, bright and shiny system. We are now 30 years old. A 30 year-old system will not be as reliable as a brand new system,’ said Chairman Peter Benjamin.”
GROUP HOMES: WaPo’s Henri Cauvin reports on Ward 4 residents’ misgivings about having the highest concentration of group homes: “Covering a swath of Northwest and Northeast Washington from Petworth up to the northern tip of the city, Ward 4 contains nearly a quarter of the 338 group homes regulated by the city’s social service agencies. Of the 113 group homes serving people with developmental disabilities, 47 of them, or more than 40 percent, are in Ward 4. Community leaders say such homes, typically run by private providers under contract with the city, have become too concentrated, particularly in and around Takoma. The community has ‘always had a tradition of tolerance,’ said Jackie Jones, president of the Takoma D.C. Neighborhood Association. ‘We believe in a diverse neighborhood in the broadest sense of the term, but there’s a limit to what any neighborhood can take.'”
COLBY KING: Continues to follow the DYRS story, noting recent juvenile victims and writing: “Thank goodness Nickles, Fenty and DYRS don’t have the last word on public safety and the rehabilitation of young offenders. D.C. Council member David Catania (I-At Large), a tenacious and effective legislator, doesn’t share the laissez faire attitude toward juvenile crime that is so prevalent in city hall. This week Catania announced the appointment of the noted law firm Nixon Peabody LLP to serve as special counsel to his health committee to look for solutions to the city’s chronic problem of youth violence. ‘This much is clear,’ Catania said in a news release, ‘the District’s current approach to addressing these problems is not working, and it is time for us to consider fresh ideas.'”
JONETTA ROSE BARRAS: Compares the recent Ward 3 mayoral debate to watching the History Channel. The Examiner columnist would like to hear more about the candidates’ plans for the future and less carping over old alleged misdeeds: “The past may be an indicator of the future, but it isn’t the sole barometer of competence or potential success. Still, Gray and Fenty are mired in it.”
TAX FRAUD SCHEME: The Examiner’s Scott McCabe reports that a Hyattsville woman has pleaded guilty to tax fraud: “A Hyattsville woman is facing six months in jail after admitting her role in a scheme to defraud the District of Columbia by filing bogus D.C. income tax returns. From 2002 to 2007, Wanda Garner, 51, and others conspired to steal tens of thousands of dollars from the D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue by preparing bogus tax refund forms, prosecutors said. The investigation is ongoing and charges against others involved in the scheme are expected, said Ronald Machen, U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia.”