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Posted at 5:40 AM ET, 09/23/2010

Lori's A.M. Buzz: Today's big meetings

By Washington Post editors

Good morning. Lots happening today. Vincent Gray and Michelle Rhee meet at noon today. Metro officials are back testifying on Capitol Hill and there may be some money for traffic relief in Virginia. Oh, and it's going to feel a lot like August . . . again.

Another hot one. Our *extended* summer temperatures continue today. The Capital Weather Gang predicts the high 80's or even, gulp, mid-90's. It'll also be a bit humid with a slight chance (20 percent) of scattered showers later in the evening. But, we hope, nothing like the storm last night that knocked out power to about 10,000 people in Montgomery and Prince George's counties. By 6 a.m, power was back for all but about 380 customers, according to the Pepco outage map.

Coming up: Three big conversations

High noon. D.C. Council Chairman VIncent Gray and D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee are slated to have their first post-primary election get together today at noon at the Wilson Building. We're guessing there will be much to discuss during the closed-door meeting, including, possibly Gray's remarks during an interview with DC 50's NewsPlus set to air on Friday, in which he said he'd consider rehiring some of the teachers Rhee fired. (Post, WTOP)

Execution in Virginia. Teresa Lewis is likely to become the first woman executed in Virginia in nearly a century. Lewis, 41, is scheduled to die by lethal injection tonight at 9 p.m. She was convicted of conspiring with two other men to kill her husband and stepson for insurance money. Gov. Robert McDonnell declined to stay her execution and on Tuesday, the Supreme Court also declined to stop her execution. Lewis's supporters, which include author John Grisham, have argued that she does not deserve to die because she is borderline mentally retarded, with the intellectual ability of about a 13-year-old, and had been used by a much smarter conspirator. It is unfair, they said, that she was condemned to death while the two men who fired the shots received life terms.

Metro on the Hill. Metro officials, including Interim General Manager Richard Sarles and the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board are scheduled to testify before Congress this afternoon on efforts to make the system safer and more reliable. We'll bring you the news if they make headlines.

Today's headlines:

Transportation money in Va.? There have been hints for weeks, but Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell today is expected to release the results of an audit at the Virginia Department of Transportation that sources said has uncovered hundreds of millions of dollars in unspent funds spread across several accounts. According to some accounts, there may be as much as $500 million. In a weird way, this could be good news for commuters who'd love to see improvements made to ease their daily commutes.

Va. teacher faces more charges. A former high school teacher who pleaded guilty in July to molesting a student in Manassas now faces additional charges in North Carolina, where he is accused of molesting another boy in a case that dates back to the 1970's. The Post chronicled allegations that Kevin Ricks abused numerous boys for decades before being arrested in Manassas earlier this year.

Is the race really over? D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty has said repeatedly that he won't run for mayor as a Republican or as a write-in candidate, but that hasn't stopped some folks from saying he should. A "Run, Fenty, Run" page has now popped up on Facebook. (Yes, we know, everything pops up on Facebook these days, but still . . .) D.C.'s Republicans, who have no candidate on the ballot for mayor in November's general election, remain the most vocal and supportive of a write-in campaign.

Fifteen tons of stuff in NW D.C. The eviction of a D.C. woman from the rowhouse she'd lived in for 15 years caused a spectacle along Otis Place in Northwest Washington -- in part because Eloisa Diaz' belongings stretched along four street corners. Diaz, who said she'd been collecting the items to send to relatives in Venezuela, Columbia and Mexico, fell behind on her rent payments and U.S. Marshals arrived Tuesday morning to begin hauling away her belongings. A moving and storage company has offered to store her stuff free for a month.

Other items:

Burger and books. In advance of this weekend's National Book Festival, D.C. chef (and 'Top Chef' star) Spike Mendelsohn will be online today at 1 p.m. to talk about his new cookbook, "The Good Stuff Cookbook: Burgers, Fries, Shakes, Wedges and More." Join the proprietor of Good Stuff Eatery and the newly opened We The Pizza.

Fear or sanity? According to paperwork filed with the National Parks Service, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have upped the estimate for the number of folks expected to attend the "rival" rallies they have planned for Oct. 30. National Park Service spokesman Bill Line said Wednesday the crowd estimates on the permit application have been amended from 25,000 to 60,000. Line said the parks service is in discussions with organizers and that the permit has not yet been approved. Stewart will be leading the "Rally to Restore Sanity" while Colbert will be part of the "March to Keep Fear Alive." (WTOP)

Phew. That's it for now. Thanks for reading and be sure to check back for more news and headlines. Have a great day and try and stay cool.

By Washington Post editors  | September 23, 2010; 5:40 AM ET
Categories:  DC, Loris AM Buzz, Maryland, Virginia, Weather  
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