IN LL WEEKLY—-“Arrear Guard”: Marion Barry isn’t just tardy with his tax returns. Plus: Why can’t Adrian Fenty find qualified nominees for the PERB? And Jack Evans and Phil Mendelson get into a crime-bill catfight.
Morning LLDers. But this isn’t just any morning—-this is an AVERAGE MORNING. As part of Washington City Paper’s enterprise-wide devotion to documenting every detail of an AVERAGE DAY in the District of Columbia, LL will be chronicling the AVERAGE D.C. GOVERNMENT by following around AVERAGE CITY ADMINISTRATOR Dan Tangherlini all day as he discharges his official duties. Hang on every last detail by following along at washingtoncitypaper.com.
In WaPo, D.C. politics beatster David Nakamura and Prince George’s politics beatster Ovetta Wiggins team up for a postmortem on the P.G. United deal. The juicy bits: “Fenty’s aides said they were never convinced that a soccer stadium would generate more tax revenue than, say, a movie theater or bowling alley. Behind the scenes, Fenty told D.C. Council members he would support a stadium only if they took the lead. But there was no majority support on the 13-member council, and the recession has made public financing even less appealing….The relationship between MacFarlane and Fenty was rocky from the start, after MacFarlane spent considerable time wooing two of the mayor’s chief political rivals on the council: Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) and Marion Barry (D-Ward 8)….Although [erstwhile Poplar Point master developer Clark Realty Capital] had included a soccer stadium as an option in its design proposal, the Fenty administration’s formal agreement with the company, signed in the fall, forbade Clark officials from talking with United, said a source familiar with the contract.”
ALSO—-Marc Fisher asks Marylanders what the hell they’re thinking. The move “is a sweet deal for United, a feel-good boost for the beleaguered county and a financial loser for Maryland taxpayers.”
Jonetta Rose Barras calls bullshit on Marion Barry’s excuses. “His violation of federal tax laws and probation are very public matters. Barry picked up more than $90,000 of the public’s money in 2007. Each month, he continues to shove taxpayers’ dollars in his wallet. Yet, he doesn’t understand that as an elected official, he helps set the standard in this community. Strutting around, without shame or remorse, enables other scofflaws.” She demands the council take action against Barry, perhaps establish internal ethics panel.
FUN WITH IG REPORTS—-Michael Neibauer grabs a fab tidbit from Inspector General’s probe of Office of Unified Communications: That agency “is spending $15,000 a year to have its call takers’ chairs professionally cleaned, one of numerous expenses by the agency deemed ‘questionable’ by internal auditors in a new report.” Director Janis Quintana‘s response: “The chairs are occupied 24 hours a day 7 days a week and we feel that for the overall quality of the work environment, general upkeep, and proper hygiene, this equipment should be cleaned on a regular basis.” Not a bad excuse!
PETER NICKLES DEMANDS!…that council rework law barring nighttime D.C. Jail prisoner releases, on the grounds that it has cost the city millions in court judgments, according to Bill Myers in Examiner. And if they don’t? “In a letter to council Chairman Vince Gray, Nickles said that if the council doesn’t repeal the law by March 4, he will declare it unconstitutional and order jail officials to ignore it.” I.E., THE LAW WILL BE NICKLED.
SAYS JAIL NEIGHBOR—-“Unconstitutional? Am I the last to know that he was appointed to the Supreme Court in the last few weeks? Have I been that busy?” says ANC member Neil “Don’t Pick” Glick. “The attorney general is here to enforce the laws of our city and put the best interest of the public and the taxpayers first.”
WCP alum Brian Montopoli points out at CBS News that Barack Obama has yet to place Taxation Without Representation plates on his limo. Says spokesperson, It’s “just something that the president hasn’t gotten to yet.” [via WTOP]
LL humbly submits that he provided the most essential coverage of the WTU’s new PR campaign to promote their contract proposal, but you might also read Bill Turque‘s post at D.C. Wire and Marc Fisher‘s blog post, too. Good line from Fish: Radio ad “manages to be both awkwardly defensive and bracingly aggressive.”
Again, if LL’s coverage fails to satisfy, you might read Susan Kinzie‘s fine (A1!) WaPo article on the UDC tuition hike vote. Includes this fine Allen Sessoms quote: “This is the easy part….We’ve got a decade’s worth of work to do.”
D.C. schoolkids—-180 of them, from KIPP DC KEY Academy, Shaw Middle School and Stuart-Hobson Middle School—-visit White House for black history lesson from Michelle Obama, says NC8.
OSSE plans to start public-school student residency checks a month earlier, Myers reports in Examiner. “Schools are slated to check students’ addresses in May and will hand over their information in the fall. If State Superintendent Deborah Gist has her way, though, schools will open their investigations April 1.”
THE MUCH MORE INTRIGUING DEBORAH GIST STORY—-She provisionally holds the Guinness record for Most Kisses in a Minute, or so reports WaPo’s John Kelly. Vince Gray and Tommy Wells helped judge!
MYERS ON FIRE—-Also reports on new Superior Court rules governing special-ed cases. “Under Chief Judge Lee Satterfield’s regulations, lawyers will have to complete at least 16 hours of specialized training, prove that they’re in good standing with the D.C. Bar, submit to continuing education seminars and follow a rigid code of conduct on topics ranging from case management to ensuring that the children’s parents, not the lawyers, make decisions affecting a child’s education.”
Metro announces its $230M stimulus spending plans, via Kytja Weir in Examiner, Eric Weiss and Lisa Rein in WaPo, and AP’s Nafessa Syeed, who writes: “The projects include replacing old buses and platforms, installing energy-efficient lighting at stations and building a rail-car inspection and test facility. In addition, there are plans to install more SmarTrip vending machines, update train-arrival signs, revamp the Metro Center customer sales offices and replace vehicles for MetroAccess, a service for disabled people.”
AAAND—-Michelle Rhee talks stimulus with WUSA-TV’s Bruce Johnson. RELATED—Georgetown B-school students ponder ways to attract better teachers. Also WaPo reader wants to know, “Do you really believe that experienced teachers don’t support, motivate and expect great results from their students? Does one have to be 25 and new to be excellent? Should there be a limit to the years one can teach? Is one jaded at 30, or 40?”
SHE’LL LOVE THIS—-WaTimes WH reporter compares Rhee’s certitude to Bush’s.
Jason Cherkis has more from renegade fire investigators at City Desk.
IN THEMAIL—-Gary Imhoff reacts to Barras’ news that the District is considering contract with Mormon-affiliated company to digitize archives, and Dorothy Brizill has further thoughts on BOEE pick Omar Nour and other nominees.
DCPS central office alum Meria Carstarphen, now St. Paul, Minn., superintendent, is under consideration for Austin, Texas, job.
Tom Sherwood looks at double parking downtown, vis-a-vis Jim Graham‘s request for a “citywide review” of commercial parking practices.
WAPO FOLLOWS—-Keith L. Alexander follows up on Mark Segraves‘ WTOP scoop yesterday on the Banita Jacks house still on the market (so does NC8); and Del Quentin Wilber rehashes news of Barry’s tax filings first reported at WTOP and WUSA-TV.
Bloomberg News does the Hot-and-Not on the D.C. dining scene: “Out are Morton’s steakhouse and the Off the Record bar at the Hay-Adams Hotel, said Washington television producer Tammy Haddad. The bar at Wolfgang Puck’s The Source restaurant is now in, she said.”
WaTimes reader on Wells bag bill: “Don’t these people realize they’re missing a huge opportunity for a job-stimulus program? How about hiring some out-of-work unskilled laborers to clear out this mess? Hmm, that might entail using illegal immigrants. Well, maybe we could put our local jailbirds on it – except that doing so violates labor laws. Darn!” It goes on like this.
United Medical Center has new medical chief.
NC8: Pamela J. Butler, 47, is missing. “Butler was last seen on Feb. 12 at approximately 9:48 p.m. in the 5800 block of 4th Street Northwest. She is described as a black female, 5’3″ tall, and weighing 120 pounds. She reportedly has brown hair and brown eyes.”
Second arrest made in September murder.
Blogger: “Eleanor Holmes Norton may be an obnoxious, irrational fruit fly of a woman, but at least she has a sense of humor.”
HELEN MIRREN TO FUN STREET—-Will appear in Shakespeare Theatre’s September Phedre production.
D.C. COUNCIL TODAY—-10 a.m.: Committee on Human Services agency performance oversight hearing, JAWB 412; Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary roundtable on fire hydrant inspection, maintenance, and repair, JAWB 120; Committee on Health agency performance oversight hearing, JAWB 500; 11 a.m.: Committee of the Whole roundtable on PR18-78, “Riggs Road and South Dakota Avenue Area Development Plan Approval Resolution of 2009,” JAWB 123; 3 p.m.: Committee on Aging and Community Affairs roundtable on PR18-24, the “District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights Christopher Dyer Confirmation Resolution of 2009,” PR18-25, the “District of Columbia on Human Rights Nimesh Patel Confirmation Resolution of 2009,” PR18-26, the “District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights Anil Kakani Confirmation Resolution of 2009,” PR18-27, the “District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights Mai Fernandez Confirmation Resolution of 2009,” PR18-28, the “District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights Lamont Akins Confirmation Resolution 2009,” JAWB 123.
ADRIAN FENTY TODAY—-No public events scheduled.