City Desk

Chatter: Hate the Bin, Not the Binner

punksWhat you said about what we said last week

From the perspective of most residents, the District couldn’t have done much worse of a job replacing trash cans and recycling bins across the city earlier this year. Last week’s Loose Lips column showed how ugly things looked from the inside, with one aide to Mayor Vince Gray writing to other D.C. government employees, “We all now look like idiots.”

Readers’ takes? “Most of the issue could have been avoided from the start if [the Department of Public Works] had just planned on how they were going to pick up the cans,” wrote MLD. “They should have set a date for each ward or pickup day and then picked up the cans on that day. Instead, they left it open for everyone’s different interpretation. To most people, that meant that DPW would pick up the old cans soon after delivering the new ones.” Randall M. hear-heared: “The replacement of the supercans was part of the budget but the speed at which they did it was not. MLD was absolutely right that like leaf collection, the District should have issued a schedule for the removal of the old cans. Also, they could have worked with nonprofits for a creative reuse of the cans like rain barrels.”

Commenter Bob took a more conspiratorial tack. “The reality is that DPW was made to throw crash resources in getting the cans distributed before primary election day,” he wrote. “This was apparently based on the mistaken belief by Gray’s administration that a touched and grateful electorate would rally to the mayor over new cans...Once the surge was over and Gray lost anyway, DPW apparently had not put a plan in place to collect all the old cans in an organized manner...News that such ‘valuable DC property’ was being sent to an incinerator or landfill was just icing on the cake of ineptitude.”

Fort Reno 911

For last week’s cover story, I autopsied the series of events surrounding the cancellation and uncancellation of this year’s Fort Reno concert series, which organizers initially axed after the National Park Service asked them to pay for U.S. Park Police security at each show. Reacting to a blog post earlier in the week on the resumption of this year’s shows—organizers will pay, although Park Police did make some concessions—readers picked sides. “No thanks to the Park Police for not showing up to their own meeting, not making these requirements clear in the first place, and only doing the right thing once 1,600 people had signed a petition and there were letters from elected officials,” wrote Mister Goat.

Cue the dissenters. “It eludes me completely how the prospect of taking collections/donations to pay for a free community concert might fall under the definition (‘punk rock’ or not) of ‘selling out,’” wrote Tbonebullets. “Or how cooperating with authorities to provide security to cover for the possibility (remote or not) of an unfortunate accident might be considered ‘selling out.’ Rather, it would seem to me, at least, as the mature, wise, I dunno—intelligent—thing to do.”

Department of Corrections

Due to a reporting error, last week’s Young and Hungry column incorrectly stated that its subject, waiter Stelios Alexandris, used to work at events catered by 1789 Restaurant, where he has been employed since 1980. In fact, the part-time catering gig was not associated with 1789.

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