City Desk

District Line Daily: Metro Unsuccessfully Avoids An Earful, HTJ Unsolved Mystery

A morning roundup of news, opinion, and links from Washington City Paper and around the District. Send tips and ideas to citydesk@washingtoncitypaper.com.

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Good morning from Washington City Paper! It's Tuesday. Seventy-seven years ago today, nylon was invented. No, really.

LEADING THE MORNING NEWS: D.C. Council is trying to figure out how Harry Thomas Jr. stole from the kids. [Times]; apparently the trust that he funneled $350,000 through was fast-tracked on lots of paperwork [Examiner]; Metro riders would rather turn the heat off on trains than pay higher fares [Post]; Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood will honk at you if he sees you talking or texting on your cell phone [WTOP]; the "peculiar" marriage of murdered socialite Viola Drath and Albrecht Muth, the man suspected of killing her [WJLA]; things not looking so good for the bald eagle recovered near the Blue Line yesterday [WTOP]; D.C. Lottery contract continues to unravel [Times].

YOUR DAILY QUALITY-OF-LIFE MEASUREMENT: On Monday, City Paper's Needle dipped by 2 points. The bad news: A juror carrying a portable radio was handcuffed at the courthouse while guards took it apart. The good news: NBC's Jim Vance wants the Redskins to change its name to something not racist. Take a look here.

SIX CITY PAPER STORIES FROM MONDAY TO HELP YOU MAKE SENSE OF YOUR DAY:

Unsolved Mystery In The HTJ Case: Loose Lips Alan Suderman wants to know the name of the third as-yet-unidentified organization that gave Thomas a kickback: "Court records describe the third group, known at ORGANIZATION #1, as a for-profit company that provides "arts-oriented youth programs" and gave Thomas a $25,000 cut on a $60,000 grant from the CYITC back in 2007. The CYITC surely knows who the organization is, but has been on lock-down since the Thomas affair broke. [Ward 1 Councilmember JimGraham's promised to issue a report on CYITC shenanigans, but he recently told LL he's not had any luck figuring out who the mystery organization is." In the meantime, LL hopes it isn't getting more city dollars.

Shit Marion Barry Says, Annotated: Housing Complex's Lydia DePillis interprets what Barry's comments on the Kojo Nnamdi show mean for real estate. Barry on gentrification: "We welcome any and everybody into Ward 8 into the city. But we're not going to tolerate people coming in, pushing out long-term residents who've been there during the good times and the bad times. And so we welcome that. And so what's going to happen in St. Elizabeth's East Campus is going to have to be a mixture of people. We're not displacing anybody. There's going to be a mixture of people." Depillis: "Bravo!"

Ted Leo and the Pharmacists Return To Perform Breakthrough Album: And even Arts Desk editor Jonathan L. Fischer is intrigued by the possibilities of seeing The Tyranny of Distance live: "I will briefly shelve my serious skepticism over full-album concerts and compete with you to buy tickets when they go on sale this Friday."

Metro Customer Survey Doesn't Want To Know What You Really Think: Unsuck DC Metro calls the latest WMATA survey a "push poll" and Shani Hilton says it doesn't seem all that useful to her, either. The questions are all premised on the notion that Metro's solutions for things like covering the budget gap are the only solutions: "Riders, who often pay both taxes and fares, may want to see Metro try something else: Like become more efficient in its hiring and contracting practices. But based on the choices available in this survey, it would be impossible to know that. It's pretty clear that the survey's authors aren't interested in riders' suggestions so much as the Metro suggestions that riders hate the least." Meanwhile, at a series of fare hike hearings, riders are suggesting all kinds of ideas that would keep both fares and costs down.

Spike Mendelsohn's Steak Frites Burger Falls Flat At South Beach: Young & Hungry's Chris Shott notes that former Top Chef toque Spike Mendelsohn failed to impress at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival: "The Good Stuff Eatery owner arrived to the splashy event's annual Burger Bash competition dressed in a faux mustache and sideburns—a bit less conspicuous than the Hamburglar costume he wore last year. For all his work at appearances, Mendelsohn might be better advised to devote more attention to his grilling."

Fewer Kids Are Were Living In Concentrated Poverty: A new study suggests that, thanks to gentrification, fewer kids are living in concentrated poverty—neighborhoods where 30 percent of the population lives below the poverty line—but an analyst says that the numbers, which track 2005-2009, may be out of date: "It's possible that we could see a reverse in the data right now," D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute's Jenny Reed says. "We've seen in the last three years a big increase in poverty," all in areas that have gentrified.

PHOTO OF THE DAY: Occupy Homes

THIS WEEK: The D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute will hold a preview discussion of the District's FY 2013 budget tomorrow from 1 to 2:30 p.m. DCFPI, 820 First Street NE on the fourth floor (near Union Station Metro). RSVP to Tina Marshall, marshall@cbpp.org or 202-325-8786.

LINKDUMP AFTER THE JUMP!

LOOSE LIPS DAILY POLITICS LINKS, by Alan Suderman (tips? lips@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • DCPS paying huge OT to gardener, custodian. [Examiner]
  • Children & Youth Investment Trust Corporation execs smelled something fishy in grants related to Harry Thomas Jr., emails show. [Post]
  • Why, exactly, did Mayor Vince Gray recuse himself many moons ago from a vote on the lottery contract? [Times]
  • Stein Club says no to incumbent Councilmembers Yvette Alexander and Marion Barry. [Blade]
  • National Harbor casino proposal prompts D.C. inferiority complex. [Examiner]
  • ANC boundaries, still shiftin'. [GGW]
  • Mark Segraves on Redskins move: "And if there’s a way to make it happen, city leaders will make it happen." [Post]
  • D.C. police shoot a 13-year-old dog. [Legal Times]
  • Anti-corporate donations initiative is street legal. [Post]
  • Ivanka Trump visits the Wilson Building. [Post]

REAL ESTATE AND DEVELOPMENT LINKS, by Housing Complex blogger Lydia DePillis (tips? housingcomplex@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Occupy D.C. shifts to homes. [DCist]
  • Arty activity space for Dupont. [PoP]
  • The Wharf, in detail—so unbelievably exciting. [SWLQTC]
  • Now that's some anti-Walmart organizing. [NYO]
  • Bundy field, transformed. [EastShawDC]
  • Is a good venue all you need to make an indie-pop town? [AtlanticCities]
  • Can "rust belt chic" save Cleveland? [NextAmericanCity]
  • What the transit bill means for American pocketbooks. [Streetsblog]
  • How "public interest design" could save architecture. [GOOD]
  • Web organizing against Glover Park moratorium. [HyperlocalGP]
  • What a National Harbor casino would mean for D.C. [Examiner]
  • Today on the market: Incredibly well-proportioned rooms.

ARTS LINKS, by Jonathan L. Fischer (tips? artsdesk@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Monica Hesse communes with J. Lo's butt. [Post]
  • Lenny Campello exposes another art scam. [Daily Campello]
  • Pictures of Frida's pictures. [BYT]
  • Kingpen Slim has a song about lollipops. [Mumbo Sauce]

FOOD LINKS, by Young & Hungry columnist Chris Shott (tips? hungry@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Free pancakes at IHOP today. [WTOP]
  • Todd Gray turns Watershed's daily management over to Dallas-based Culinaire. [Post]
  • Mintwood Place is now taking reservations. [Washingtonian]
  • Burger Tap & Shake is now serving breakfast burgers. [Facebook]
  • Take a peak inside Coffy Cafe in Columbia Heights, opening Mar. 1. [Prince of Petworth]
  • The deadline for comments on D.C.'s new food truck rules (some 2,500 and counting) is Thursday. [DCist]
  • Top Chef is holding a casting call at Graffiato on Wednesday. [Examiner]
  • Where does Chipotle pork come from? [HuffPost]
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Comments

  1. #1

    CM Jim Graham overseeing CYITC is definitely the fox guarding the hen house. Graham also funneled earmark through CYITC to then non-profits he controlled or influenced and then leveraged the funds by directing as subgrants to groups who where then expected to show up at his campaign events and etc.

    This is similar to CM Grahams oversight of the the District's former Office of Property Management(OPM), which also ended up in contract and bribery scandals. Once it was exposed he then as now jumped up to investigate Douglas Development and others.

    After Jemal threaten to release the results of a private investigation into Graham, Jemal ended up getting the site of the current Allegro Development on 14th with Jemal held for a short period of time and flipped for millions to Graham crony Metro Development.

    Graham only investigates to cover his own pay-to-play trail.

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