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D.C. Wire: March 15, 2009 - March 21, 2009

AIDS Protest at City Hall Draws More Police Than Demonstrators

One protestor dragged a replica of a big gray coffin into the middle of Pennsylvania Avenue outside City Hall. Another carried a smaller "baby" coffin. And yet another prostated himself in the middle of the street. It was all a part of a small demonstration yesterday against what the protesters...

By Darryl Fears  |  March 20, 2009; 6:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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Poll: Is Fenty Right on Gun Amendment?

Washington mayor Adrian Fenty says District residents want a voice in the House, even if the city loses control of its gun laws in gaining it. Do you agree?...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  March 20, 2009; 10:24 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Gun Ban Case , Mayor Fenty , Voting Rights  
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Breaking News: Budget Cuts

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's numbers for the proposed 2010 budget: There will be 776 layoffs and another 398 jobs eliminated through attrition and another 458 vacant jobs eliminated, for a total of 1,632 jobs cut in 2010. The mayor said 250 of the cuts are for schools, a result of...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 20, 2009; 9:57 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Gray and Cheh Call for OCTO Briefing

Chairman Vincent C. Gray and Councilmember Mary M. Cheh wrote letters to the executive branch yesterday calling for a briefing on the scandal in the Office of the Chief Technology Officer. The FBI arrested a OCTO manager and contractor last week in an alleged kickback scam. A second OCTO employee...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 20, 2009; 7:32 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  City Finances , D.C. Council  
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Budget Day in the District; Layoffs in Fiscal 2010

It's budget day in the District, and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty is set to announce the fiscal 2010 plan at 10:30 a.m. The Wire reported yesterday that the 2010 budget is tighter than the 2009 plan and includes layoffs of hundreds of workers. Read David Nakamura's Washington Post report here....

By Marcia Davis  |  March 20, 2009; 6:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Fenty: D.C. Residents Support Voting Rights Even With Gun Amendment

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty said he believes that District residents support pushing a voting rights bill through Congress even if it means the city's gun control laws would be weakened by an amendment being offered by gun rights supporters. In an interview with The Washington Post this week, Fenty...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 19, 2009; 10:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Rhee Joins Influential New Board

D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee has joined the newly formed advisory board of the Broad Center for the Management of School Systems, a non-profit that trains new urban school leaders. D.C. State Schools Superintendent Deborah Gist is a recent graduate of one of its programs, The Broad Superintendents...

By Bill Turque  |  March 19, 2009; 7:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Video: First Lady Visits Anacostia High School

First Lady Michelle Obama and a crew of high-profile women fanned out across D.C. today to visit schools in honor of Women's History Month. Alicia Keys, Sheryl Crow and astronaut Mae Jemison were among the VIPS who turned out to talk about setting career goals. Below, video of Obama's visit...

By Mike McPhate  |  March 19, 2009; 4:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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City to Lay Off Hundreds of Workers

The District government will lay off hundreds of employees over the next several months to balance its budget in the wake of sharply declining revenues, city officials said today. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) is scheduled to release tomorrow his fiscal 2010 budget proposal, which will be lower than the...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 19, 2009; 3:53 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  City Finances  
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D.C. Wire Video: UDC President on Proposed Changes

Allen Sessoms, president of the University of the District of Columbia, came by The Post yesterday to discuss his vision for the school, his plan to split it into a community college and a four-year institution, and the proposal to double the tuition for the latter. See the video below....

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  March 19, 2009; 2:48 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Fenty Announces Changes After OCTO Scandal

City Administrator Dan Tangherlini and Interim OCTO Director Chris Willey watch as Mayor Fenty addresses reporters today. (Photo by David Nakamura) Mayor Adrian M. Fenty said he is appointing Chris Willey as the interim director of the scandal-plagued Office of the Chief Technology Officer. Willey was a deputy of...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 19, 2009; 2:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety , Mayor Fenty  
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Second D.C. Government Worker Arrested in Tech Scam

A second D.C. government employee has been arrested in a bribery and kickback scam involving technology contracts. Farruk Awan, 37, who most recently worked in the D.C. Office of Chief Financial Officer, was arrested this morning on charges of conspiring to commit bribery and launder money, according to a law...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 19, 2009; 1:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety  
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Michael Brown Trying to Protect Council Salary

D.C. Council member Michael A. Brown (I-At Large) is fighting efforts to garnishee his council wages to help pay a more than $1 million judgment against him, two business partners, three related companies and the Walter E. Washington Convention Center Authority. Bernard Miller, owner of Miller Copying Center, has been...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  March 19, 2009; 1:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Fenty: "Better Services for Less Money"

Delivering his State of the District address at a senior center this morning, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty says his administration and the city must make difficult decisions about spending priorities during a tight budget year. The mayor will deliver his fiscal 2010 budget proposal to the D.C. Council tomorrow and...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 19, 2009; 11:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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State of the District, Again

The Fenty administration postponed the mayor's delivery of the annual speech until today at 11 a.m. It had originally been scheduled for Tuesday. Watch this space for updates on the remarks....

By Marcia Davis  |  March 19, 2009; 8:38 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Fenty: "Whoa!"

D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) was promoting improvements to this year's summer youth jobs program at Ballou Senior High School yesterday when another issue came falling down. He was in a first-floor classroom with several students, demonstrating how to register online when there was a sudden thud. "Whoa!" he...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  March 19, 2009; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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First Lady, Celebrities Headed to D.C. Schools on Thursday

In another star-packed, White House-coordinated event, first lady Michelle Obama and a line-up of A-list stars -- including Alicia Keyes, Sheryl Crow, Debbie Allen and Alfre Woodard -- plan to fan out to Washington-area schools on Thursday, where they will speak with students about setting career goals and reaching their...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 18, 2009; 6:44 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Education , Obama  
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Correction: D.C. Schools Not Richer Than God

Education Secretary Arne Duncan is new to Washington, but he's wasted no time perpetuating the canard that the underachieving District school system is flush with cash. "D.C. has had more money than God for a long time, but the outcomes are still disastrous," Duncan said in a March 4 visit...

By Bill Turque  |  March 18, 2009; 4:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (18)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Mayors Love United Arab Emirates

Turns out, Mayor Adrian Fenty wasn't the only big-city mayor to be touring Dubai and Abu Dhabi the week of Feb. 15-23. One of Fenty's role models, Chicago's Richard Daley (D), was also there, according to published reports. Daley was part of a trade mission and economic development research trip...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 18, 2009; 2:17 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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City to Fire 23 Technology Office Contractors

More fallout from the arrests of a D.C. technology office manager and contractor on bribery charges last week. Government sources tell D.C. Wire that city officials today plan to terminate 23 contractors tied to three companies named in the affidavit from federal law enforcement authorities charging manager Yusuf Acar and...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 18, 2009; 1:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety  
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It's Summer Job Season Again

You've got to give the administration of Mayor Adrian M. Fenty props for diving right back in. It kicks off early registration today for the 2009 Summer Youth Employment Program and will be announcing the upcoming 2009 Summer Youth Job Expo. The summer job program has been a staple in...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 18, 2009; 7:25 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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D.C. Wire Video: Post Reporters Discuss AIDS Report

The Washington Post's Darryl Fears and Jose Antonio Vargas, who have been reporting on the city's startling new report on the prevalence of HIV and AIDS in the District, discussed the issue today on News Channel 8. Watch the video below....

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  March 17, 2009; 6:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Study Confirms DCPS Enrollment Decline

Audited enrollment figures quietly posted on Friday confirm that D.C. public schools suffered their steepest annual decline since the District started using an outside firm a decade ago to verify the student population. Enrollment for the 2008-09 academic year stands at 45,190, down 8.5 percent from last year's 49,422. That...

By Bill Turque  |  March 17, 2009; 11:07 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Mayoral Statement Watch

In the wake of the alleged bribery scam at the D.C. Office of the Chief Technology Officer, exposed by federal law enforcement officials last week, we asked the mayor's office the following questions last Thursday: 1. Under the ITSA system, when a project manager selects a contractor for a job,...

By David A Nakamura  |  March 17, 2009; 10:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Where Did All The Gas Stations Go?

If you think it's hard to find a gas station in the District, you're right, according to D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. (D-Ward 5). Thomas introduced legislation today to encourage the construction and retention of gas stations by giving them tax breaks. The details, he said, would be worked...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  March 17, 2009; 10:41 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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State of the District Address Today (*Postponed)

UPDATE 10:44 a.m.: The mayor has postponed the speech until Thursday. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty is set to deliver the annual State of the District address this morning at 10:30. Fenty will be offering the assessment of the city at the Hattie Holmes Senior Wellness Center in Northwest DC. The...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 17, 2009; 7:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Stepping Up HIV Testing

The District is planning to step up its HIV testing in light of the report released yesterday that said about 3 percent of D.C. residents over the age of 12 have HIV or AIDS. Read the story from yesterday's news conference....

By Marcia Davis  |  March 17, 2009; 7:09 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Mayor Fenty  
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Excerpts: Chat With D.C. HIV/AIDS Administration Director

Dr. Shannon Hader, who leads the city's efforts to combat AIDS, took questions from readers this afternoon. Excerpts follow. To read the full transcript, click here. Washington, DC: What plans does the District has in place to tackle this epidemic? Surely being rated higher than Africa is a scary thought...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  March 16, 2009; 4:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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D.C. Schools Cutting Back On 'Read-Aloud'

More than 2,000 students in D.C. public and public charter schools with reading difficulties have questions and passages in the English Language Arts portion of the annual DC-CAS standardized test read to them. But federal and state officials have ordered D.C. schools to sharply reduce the number of "read-aloud"...

By Bill Turque  |  March 16, 2009; 12:51 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Get Answers on HIV and AIDS in Washington

At 2 p.m., HIV/AIDS Administration Director Sharon Hader will take your questions about the report released today that showed epidemic levels of HIV in most of Washington, with infections increasing among homosexuals, heterosexuals and intravenous drug users. To submit questions in advance or read the discussion, click here....

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  March 16, 2009; 12:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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HIV/AIDS Report To Be Released Today

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty and members of his health team, including Shannon Hader, director of the HIV/AIDS Administration, will release two reports this morning about the state of the disease in the District of Columbia. For the first time, the HIV office says that it has a confident count of...

By Marcia Davis  |  March 16, 2009; 6:58 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  City Life , Mayor Fenty  
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