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D.C. Wire: April 19, 2009 - April 25, 2009

Out-of-School Wednesdays: Some Work, Mostly Play

Ximena Hartsock, the District's new Parks and Recreation director, filled in a few details last night about plans for public school kids on the six Wednesdays that DCPS wants to devote to teacher training during the 2009-2010 academic year. The free-of-cost programs, to be based in the city's rec centers...

By Bill Turque  |  April 24, 2009; 12:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Kwame Brown: Nats Should Pay for Metro Costs

As Post reporter Lena H. Sun reported today, the District will, in fact, pay to keep the Metro open after midnight on weeknights when the Nationals' games run late. After first telling Metro that it could no longer afford to pay, the city has reversed course and agreed to foot...

By David A Nakamura  |  April 24, 2009; 11:47 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  City Finances , Nationals , transportation  
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D.C. Police and the Quest for Public Information

The relationship between cops and reporters can be like oil and water. The tension comes from police wanting hold back information as to not jeopardize an investigation or reveal too much strategy to the bad guys. Meanwhile, a reporter's livelihood depends on information -- the more, the better. This story...

By Theola Labbé-DeBose  |  April 23, 2009; 2:38 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety , D.C. Council , Theola Labbé-DeBose  
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No Plans to Legalize Pot, Barry Says

Does D.C. Council member Marion Barry want to legalize marijuana in the District? He says no, but Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reformation of Marijuana Laws, said a caller who identified themselves as being from Barry's office called him last month to inquire how...

By Tim Craig  |  April 22, 2009; 4:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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DCPS 2009-10 Calendar Has Six Mid-Week Closures

D.C. public schools would be closed on six Wednesdays between September and March for teacher training under the 2009-2010 academic calendar proposed yesterday by Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee. School officials said that they are working with the Department of Parks and Recreation to develop alternative programs on those days, but...

By Bill Turque  |  April 22, 2009; 4:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Cheh To Ask Court To Weigh In On Election Debacle

D.C. Council member Mary M. Cheh is trying to get Superior Court to force Sequoia Voting Systems to adhere to the council's subpoena power. She is expected to file a motion in court tomorrow with the assistance of pro bono counsel Jenner & Block. As chairman of special investigative committee,...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 22, 2009; 3:28 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
 
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Service Bill Signing a Tribute to Kennedy

The event was attended by Republican and Democratic leaders, former president Bill Clinton, first lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Biden and his wife Jill and former first lady Rosalynn Carter. But the signing ceremony for the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act this afternoon was really meant as a...

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  April 22, 2009; 2:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Hamil R. Harris  
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Fenty's Charter Funding Change Criticized

When Mayor Adrian M. Fenty rolled out his proposal last month for a major change in the way public charter schools are funded, his lieutenants said the idea was developed in close consultation with the D.C. Public Charter School Board and others in the charter community. Board Chairman Tom Nida...

By Bill Turque  |  April 22, 2009; 12:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Charter School for Teen Mothers to Close

A residential charter school for teenage mothers and their children will close in June after just two years because of problems with truancy, curriculum and services for special education students. MEI Futures Academy, on New Hampshire Avenue N.E. in the Lamont Riggs neighborhood, had its charter revoked last night by...

By Bill Turque  |  April 21, 2009; 3:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Nationals Won't Talk Tickets

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) isn't the only one who has been sidestepping questions about what happened to the D.C. Council's allotment of season tickets to Nationals Park. For the third consecutive week, the Washington Nationals is declining to comment on the controversy or say who it believes is the...

By Tim Craig  |  April 21, 2009; 2:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Council Bypasses Fenty on PERB Board

The D.C. Council voted today to veto Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's nominees for the Public Employee Relations Board. The council then enacted emergency legislation to allow the five-member board to operate with a quorum of one because of longstanding vacancies. The Council enacted the legislation even though Fenty, according to...

By Tim Craig  |  April 21, 2009; 12:49 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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DCPS Duns Deadbeat Dems

The D.C. Democratic State Committee, already under investigation for questions about its spending at last year's Democratic National Convention, has apparently stiffed D.C. Public Schools over a $2,500 tab for the use of McKinley Technology High School. The committee held January 19, 2008 delegate selection caucus at the Northeast school,...

By Bill Turque  |  April 21, 2009; 11:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Selling Council, Fenty Nats Tix Could Net $500,000, Brown Says

With the standoff between the D.C. Council and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty over tickets to Nationals Park continuing, Council Member Kwame Brown (D-At large) introduced legislation today to auction off both the Council and the mayor's season's tickets to the park to the highest bidder. Brown is calling his legislation...

By Tim Craig  |  April 21, 2009; 10:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Gertrude Stein Club Backs Gay Marriage

The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club voted last night to endorse same-sex marriage in the District, clearing the way for a broader debate within D.C. Democratic State Committee over the issue in the coming weeks. Jeffrey Richardson, the club president, said it is believed to be the first time that the...

By Tim Craig  |  April 21, 2009; 7:31 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Gay Democrats Blast Fenty

The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club approved a resolution tonight condemning Mayor Adrian Fenty for firing Clark Ray, who had been the openly gay director of the District Department of Parks and Recreation. The members of the club, made up of politically active gay Democrats, called Fenty's decision to fire Ray...

By Tim Craig  |  April 20, 2009; 8:45 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Ray Speaks About Removal

Clark Ray said city Administrator Dan Tangherlini called him yesterday and told him to meet at the John A. Wilson Building at 7 p.m. That's when the director of Parks and Recreation learned that Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) wanted to go in a new direction. In other words, he...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 20, 2009; 2:21 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
 
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Update: Former Principal To Head Parks

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) announced today that Ximena Hartsock, former principal of Ross Elementary, will replace Clark E. Ray as director of Parks and Recreation. Hartsock will assume her position as acting director next Monday. Hartsock, 39, has been deputy chief for the Office of Teaching and Learning within...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 20, 2009; 1:07 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
 
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District Parks Director Let Go

Update, 2:20 p.m.: Clark Ray says he had "no idea" about his impending dismissal as director of Parks and Recreation. "But that's what I signed up for," he said. "I've been around politics to know what at will means." Update, 1:07 p.m.: Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) announced today that...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  April 20, 2009; 10:43 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
 
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