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D.C. Wire: April 5, 2009 - April 11, 2009

Gist Bids Farewell to OSSE

Before moving on to her new job as the Commissioner of Education for the state of Rhode Island, Deborah A. Gist said farewell to her colleagues at the D.C. Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) in an email. "It has been a true honor to work with you...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 10, 2009; 3:34 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Education  
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Video: Fenty, Nickles Detail Alleged Computer Scam

D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty and D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles stood outside the Mount Horeb Baptist Church in Washington D.C. today to talk about how the church lost more than $62,000 in a computer scam that has affected dozens of churches in the D.C. area and more than 250 across...

By Mike McPhate  |  April 10, 2009; 3:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Hamil R. Harris  
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City Goes After Companies in Alleged Defrauding of Black Churches

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty and Attorney General Peter J. Nickles have scheduled a news conference at 9 a.m. to discuss the city's lawsuit alleging that five companies defrauded at least 30 Washington area congregations of hundreds of thousands of dollars through a computer equipment scam that has spread to at...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 10, 2009; 7:26 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  City Life , Crime and Public Safety , Mayor Fenty  
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Council Launches New Probe Into Fire Truck

Council members Phil Mendelson (D-At Large) and Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3) have launched an official investigation into the saga over how and why a District fire truck and ambulance was donated, and subsequently returned, to a small town in the Dominican Republic. In a statement, the two members described...

By Tim Craig  |  April 9, 2009; 3:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Video: Residents Welcome Dump Demolition

87-year-old Elbert Sims and his neighbors were glad to see a dump demolished in Northeast D.C. that they say has been a nuisance for years. -- Hamil Harris...

By Mike McPhate  |  April 9, 2009; 1:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Hamil R. Harris  
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School Budget Hearing Underway

More than three dozen witnesses have signed up to testify at the D.C. Council school budget hearing, which is underway today. Those testifying include George Parker, president of the Washington Teacher's Union, members of Parent Teacher Associations, principals and students. Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee is on deck to testify later...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 9, 2009; 12:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Education  
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DC GOP Stays Out of Marriage Fight; Log Cabin Endorses

If Congressional Republicans seek to wade into the battle over proposals to legalize same-sex marriages in the District, they probably won't find an enthusiastic ally in the local District Republican Committee. Paul Craney, executive director of the District Republican Committee, said yesterday his committee has not yet taken an official...

By Tim Craig  |  April 8, 2009; 12:48 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  City Life  
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Council Stands Firm Against Gun Amendment

At a public hearing last night, District Council members stepped up their rhetoric in opposition to Congress approving a voting rights bill that also restricts gun control. About 100 people attended the hearing before the Special Committee on Statehood and Self-Determination, which is chaired by Council member Michael A. Brown...

By Tim Craig  |  April 8, 2009; 12:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Voting Rights  
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Catania Strikes on Gay Marriage While Iron Is Hot

The decision to put the District within striking distance of legalizing gay marriage came about in a closed-door meeting Monday night between Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) and members David A. Catania (I-At Large) and Phil Mendelson (D-At Large), sources say. Knowing Vermont legislators could overturn the governor's veto...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 8, 2009; 10:07 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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As Trusted Mental Health Clinics Prepare to Close, Some Clients Cry Out

A group of the city's mental health clients cried out to D.C. Council members from the steps of City Hall yesterday, asking them to reconsider a plan to close six public clinics, lay off dozens of health care workers they trust, and send clients to get treatment at private clinics...

By Darryl Fears  |  April 8, 2009; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  City Life  
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Obama Launches Media Blitz to Fight AIDS

The Obama administration yesterday launched a five year, $45 million media campaign to promote HIV and AIDS awareness, saying that Americans had grown complacent about the deadly illness. "Act Against AIDS" will feature public service announcements, advertising placards on trains, buses and other modes of public transit, text messaging and...

By Darryl Fears  |  April 8, 2009; 6:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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D.C. Charter Board Taps DCPS for New Press Aide

Another DCPS person goes charter. No, we're not talking about one of the roughly 4,200 students who left D.C. Public Schools last year while charter enrollment surged 14 percent, according to the 2008 school enrollment audit report. Audrey A. Williams, who worked in the DCPS communications office, is now the...

By Theola Labbé-DeBose  |  April 8, 2009; 6:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Education , Theola Labbé-DeBose  
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Chat Highlights: Councilman vs. Marriage Activist

This afternoon, D.C. Councilman David Catania, who voted in favor of legislation to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states, and Brian Brown, executive director of the National Organization for Marriage, participated in an online discussion on the D.C. Council's vote, as well as the Vermont legislature's vote to permit...

By Carolyn Phenicie  |  April 7, 2009; 5:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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Upcoming Discussion: Councilman vs. Activist on Gay Marriage

At-large city councilman David Catania, who was the first openly gay member of the council, and Brian Brown, executive director of the National Organization for Marriage, will be online at 3:45 this afternoon to answer questions about today's council decision to recognize other states' gay marriages. Click here to submit...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  April 7, 2009; 3:19 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Wells Pressing for a Delay in Property Taxes for Businesses on H Street NE and Seventh Street SE

Council member Tommy Wells ( D - Ward 6) is facing a mini-rebellion over his efforts to enact an emergency bill to give some businesses in his district additional time to pay their property taxes. At today's Council meeting, members will take up a proposal by Wells to grant the...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 7, 2009; 12:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Council Votes to Accept Other States' Gay Marriages

The D.C. Council has voted to recognize gay marriages performed in other states on the same day that Vermont became the fourth state to legalize same-sex unions. Domestic partnerships are already legal in the nation's capital. But yesterday's vote, billed as an important milestone in gay rights, explicitly recognizes relocated...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  April 7, 2009; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Council, Fenty Battling Over Labor Relations Nominees

The D.C. Council is set for another showdown with Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D). Though the council Committee on Government Operations and the Environment rejected the mayor's four nominees to the Public Employee Relations Board, Fenty has asked for a vote from the full council at Tuesday's legislative meeting. Council...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 7, 2009; 11:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Roundtable on Vote Bill and Gun Amendment Tonight

The D.C. Council's Special Committee on Statehood and Self-Determination holds a roundtable tonight on the D.C. vote bill and the gun amendment at 6:30 at the John A. Wilson Building, room 412. About three dozen witnesses have signed up to testify, according to the office of Michael A. Brown (I-At...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 7, 2009; 7:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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Nickles Blocks Testimony

D.C. Attorney General Peter J. Nickles frustrated D.C. Council members yesterday after instructing Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's administration representatives not to testify before a budget hearing being conducted by Council member Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3). The subjects: the fire truck controversy and the Office of the Chief Technology Officer....

By Marcia Davis  |  April 7, 2009; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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DC Fire/EMS Wants to Be Your Friend on Facebook

The city's fire department has embraced Web 2.0 and is on the hunt for a few more "friends" and followers. DC Fire/EMS spokesman Alan Etter said today that the department is on Facebook and on Twitter. On Facebook search for "DC FireEMS" and on Twitter, follow the department's latest updates...

By Theola Labbé-DeBose  |  April 6, 2009; 12:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety , Theola Labbé-DeBose  
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Norton Focuses on Mass Shootings to Lobby Against Gun Rider

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) isn't missing the opportunity, with the recent news of a number of mass shootings, to push back against a gun amendment attached to the D.C. vote legislation. Norton offered condolences to the families of the victims this weekend, including three police officers fatally shot Saturday...

By Marcia Davis  |  April 6, 2009; 7:22 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
Categories:  Voting Rights  
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Council Says No More (Unqualified) Friends

The D.C. Council is set for another showdown with Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D). Though the council Committee on Government Operations and the Environment rejected the mayor's four nominees to the Public Employee Relations Board, Fenty has asked for a vote from the full council at Tuesday's legislative meeting. Council...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 5, 2009; 7:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  D.C. Council  
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