City Desk

The Needle: Pass The Dutchie On The Regulated Side Edition

Pot Papers Pending: Medical marijuana moved a bit closer toward reality in the District today, as the city officially began accepting applications (along with $5,000 fees, only half of which is refundable if the application is rejected) for cultivation centers to grow the legal pot. Applications will be accepted for about a month. Each of the 10 centers authorized will be allowed to grow 95 plants. Of course, the applications weren't actually posted online, even though the process officially began. But when has anything involving pot ever been done on time? +3

Pedicab Papers Pending, Too: For years, tourists (and, we suppose, a few locals) have been rolling around the District in seated bliss, as a pedicab driver sweats and pedals to haul them behind him or her. Up to now, it's been a pretty low-key affair, but now there are official rules. DDOT issued regulations for pedicabs, requiring head lamps, tail lights, seat belts, turn signals, and other basic safety equipment. The U.S. Park Service, naturally, isn't content with the D.C. rules, and is working on its own set of regulations for any pedicabs that stray onto the Mall. Because, you know, you can never have enough regulation of pedicabs. -1

Post Profits Plunge: Like most Washingtonians, we grumble about the Post from day to day (okay, well, maybe we grumble a bit more than usual here). But that doesn't mean we cheer for dismal financial news out of the paper's parent company, which is exactly what came out today. Earnings fell 50 percent in the last quarter at the Post, which is mostly due to earnings falling at Kaplan Higher Education, its for-profit college subsidiary, which makes far, far more money than the newspaper does—but then again, these days, just about anything makes far, far more money than newspapers do. -1

When Good Camels Go Bad: Visiting the zoo is usually pretty safe. But don't tell a woman who recently visited the Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo, near Frederick, Md., that—she was bitten by a camel while there. Both the woman and the camel are in good condition and being monitored by relevant health authorities. No word on whether any of the inhabitants of the National Zoo here have gotten any ideas. -1

Yesterday's Needle rating: 51 Today's score: 0 Friday bonus: +2 Today's Needle rating: 53

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