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Posted at 5:41 AM ET, 10/19/2010

Lori's A.M. Buzz: Waiting for $1M news

By Washington Post editors

Good morning.

It could be worse. Sounds like one of those so-so days weather-wise. There's a 30 percent chance of light showers in the morning, mostly in the northern parts of the area. The Capital Weather Gang says temperatures will be in the low to mid-60's with light winds. But -- today's forecast also comes with a disclaimer -- CWG forecasters say they only have "low to medium" confidence in the accuracy of the forecast. Here's why: "Fast-moving features along a flat jet stream bring brief bouts of rain, variable skies, and subtle temperature dips and bumps. Although no weather feature is too strong or sustained, this kind of pattern makes for tricky forecasting."

Coming up:

And the winner is . . . Officials in the Montgomery County Public School system are all abuzz as they wait for word on whether they've won the Broad Prize -- one of the most prestigious prizes in education The annual prize, funded by a Los Angeles philanthropist, recognizes urban schools that have made progress in improving student achievement and closing the persistent achievement gaps that separate racial and socioeconomic groups. The winner receives $1 million for college scholarships. MCPS officials must be pretty confident today's news will be good: The school system has scheduled a "watch party" for the 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time announcement. We'll let you know what happens. You can also follow Post Reporter Michael Birnbaum on Twitter for up-to-the-minute tweets on the scene.

Levy trial continues today. Jury selection resumes today in the trial of Ingmar Guandique, the man accused of killing intern Chandra Levy in 2001. Because of the case's notoriety, officials are drawing from a pool twice the size of a normal juror pool in hopes of finding 16 District residents to serve on the panel. Levy's case made national headlines in part because at the time of her disappearance, she was suspected of having an affair with a California congressman, Gary Condit. Guandique's trial is expected to last four to five weeks. Prospective jurors have been asked to fill out an 11-page questionnaire. We'll bring you updates on the case throughout the day. Also, here's the transcript from a live chat in which Post reporter Keith Alexander discussed the case.

Today's headlines:

Difficult times for part-time workers. The Washington, D.C., region has largely been insulated from the worst of the economic recession, but new figures from the U.S. Census Bureau indicate that while full-time workers have been able to mostly hold their ground when it comes to wages, part-time workers in the area have been hit hard. Adjusted for inflation, the median wage for part-time female workers in the region fell $2,700 over two years, to $13,500 - the biggest drop in the country. Part-time male workers fared no better. Their median pay went down $4,300, to $18,400. Only men in Denver and Orlando lost more money during that period.

Reading, writing and dinnner? Another sign of difficult economic times? In addition to breakfast and lunch, D.C. schools are now serving dinner to about 10,000 students. Montgomery and Prince George's counties have also introduced dinner programs into their schools -- but at a much smaller scale compared to the District. The program, which costs the school system about $5.7 million comes at a time when growing numbers of children are living in poverty. School official say the program is an important step in ensuring that children not only eat -- but eat healthy food.

Maryland's most expensive campaign? There seems to be little concern about money in some quarters. In Anne Arundel County, where voters have been inundated with television ads and direct mail pieces as supporters and opponents battle over an initiative to build a casino at Arundel Mills mall. Already, the campaigns have spent more than $6 million -- an amount that is expect to nearly double by the time Election Day rolls around Nov. 2. In the end, this could be one of the most expensive election battles in Maryland.

A farewell tour. D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty seemed a bit nostalgic at the ribbon cutting of the new Georgetown Library yesterday saying the event would be the last ribbon cutting he'd attend as mayor. Since Fenty took office, D.C. officials have opened at least a half-dozen new or refubished libraries. And while some were projects begun under his predecessor, Anthony Williams, many credit Fenty with pushing them through despite a weak economy. But The Post's Tim Craig writes, Fenty's push to build neighborhood amenities actually may have contributed to his electoral defeat.

In short: Early voting for the 2010 General Election has begun in the District. Rockville hit-and-run. The driver involved in a hit-and-run accident early Monday morning in Rockville that injured two teenagers riding a scooter has turned himself in.

Other items:

A strange mix-up. A Maryland woman thought to be dead, but actually alive, is now dead. Police in Severna Park went to the woman's house after neighbors became concerned that newspapers were accumulating in her box. A police officer responding to the call, confirmed she was dead, but when another person came to pick up her body (which the woman deemed be donated to science), that person said she was alive. The woman was taken to a local hospital and later a hospice, where she died. An investigation into the matter is under way.

That's it for now. Thanks for reading and be sure to check back for more news and headlines throughout the day. We'll also have our daily roundup of intriguing posts from the D.C.-area blogosphere this afternoon. Hope you have a great day. Oh -- and don't forget: you can become a fan of PostLocal on Facebook, where you can share, discuss and comment on Post stories with your friends.

By Washington Post editors  | October 19, 2010; 5:41 AM ET
Categories:  DC, Education, Loris AM Buzz, Maryland, Virginia, Weather  
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