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D.C. Wire: July 26, 2009 - August 1, 2009

Hearing Set On Fire Hydrants

A D.C. Council committee will hold a public hearing on the maintenance and repair of fire hydrants by the DC Water and Sewer Authority, spurred by this week's fire that destroyed the home of arts patron Peggy Cooper Cafritz. Council member Jim Graham (D-Ward 1), chairman of the Committee on...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  July 31, 2009; 4:09 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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D.C. Council Nearing Budget Decision

Update 1:48 p.m.:: Read the full article. Update 12:10 p.m." The council has just voted unanimously to approve the budget changes. There was very little debate D.C. Council members and their aides are scrambling this morning to put the final touches on their proposal to slash spending and raise the...

By Tim Craig  |  July 31, 2009; 1:48 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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FOP Warns Police May Flee City Force

The Fraternal Order of Police is warning there will be an exodus of sworn officers if the budget currently being considered by the D.C. Council is approved tomorrow. Kristopher Baumann, chairman of the local FOP labor committee, predicted hundreds of officers would leave this year because of proposed changes to...

By Tim Craig  |  July 30, 2009; 3:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Need to Cut Budget? Try Officials' Salaries, GOP Says

The D.C. Republican Party thinks the D.C. Council should look at their own paychecks before they follow through on their proposal to raise sales, gas and cigarette taxes. The council tentatively agreed Wednesday night to raise the sales tax to 6 percent, the gas tax to 23.5 percent and the...

By Tim Craig  |  July 30, 2009; 3:14 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
 
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Fenty Says He Is Dedicated to School Funding

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) indicated in an interview this morning that he will oppose the council's proposed $45 million cut in funding for public education. Fenty proposed $250 million in cuts himself to help the city in one of the toughest budget crunches since the 1990s. But the council...

By Nikita R Stewart  |  July 30, 2009; 2:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Budget , Mayor Fenty , Nikita Stewart  
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Barry, Catania Really Don't Like Each Other

The tense relationship between Council members Marion Barry (D-Ward 8) and David A. Catania (I-At Large) is getting worse. At yesterday's closed-door budget negotiations, Barry and Catania frequently sparred. When Catania raised concerns about Barry's proposal to divert some of the savings from the Summer Youth Employment Program to job...

By Tim Craig  |  July 29, 2009; 1:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Searching For The "It" In School Reform

The District took a first step toward an independent evaluation of its education reform efforts Monday, and it was an ambitious if wobbly one. For six hours, under the auspices of the National Research Council (NRC), thirty-six speakers strung across six panels--academics, public officials, school administrators, business leaders and actually...

By Bill Turque  |  July 28, 2009; 9:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Release of Test Data Delayed

District officials have pushed back by a week the release of school-level data from the DC-CAS standardized tests. The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) was due to post the numbers today. But, kind of like a teacher nudged by students or parents bump a C+ up to...

By Bill Turque  |  July 28, 2009; 11:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Bill Turque , Education  
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Gray Pushes to Remove All Earmarks from Budget

The D.C. Council is moving forward on a proposal to eliminate all earmarks from the 2010 budget, which would deny city funding to dozens of arts and nonprofit social organizations. At a closed-door meeting this morning, Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) said he wants to remove the remaining $8...

By Tim Craig  |  July 28, 2009; 11:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Council Gets Testimony from Dominican Official

The D.C. Council deposed Vladimir Cespedes, the mayor of Sosua, Dominican Republic, last night as part of its widening probe into why a surplus city fire truck was donated to the town earlier this year, according to a source. Cespedes appeared at a closed-door hearing before Council members Mary M....

By Tim Craig  |  July 28, 2009; 11:26 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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Barry Ex-Girlfriend Seeking Lawyer

Donna Watts-Brighthaupt, the woman at the center of the ethical questions swirling around Marion Barry, said today that federal investigators have not yet approached her as part of their preliminary investigation into the council member. Watts-Brighthaupt, Barry's ex-girlfriend who was awarded a city contract last year, pledged she would cooperate...

By Tim Craig  |  July 27, 2009; 1:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  D.C. Council , Tim Craig  
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Ray Adds to List of Supporters

The Draft Clark E. Ray for D.C. Council Committee announced today 30 residents and community leaders were joining the committee. Ray, the former director of Parks and Recreation, appears likely to challenge Council member Phil Mendelson (D-At Large) in next year's Democratic primary. Ray's newest supporters include Carlene Cheatam, founder...

By Tim Craig  |  July 27, 2009; 1:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Tim Craig  
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