Loose Lips Daily: The Meeting Edition
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
Good morning sweet readers! It's Thursday, so it must mean new column day. In this one, LL follows in the footsteps of past LLs and writes about D.C.'s favorite pol, Marion Barry. LL interviewed Barry for about eight minutes, before asking some boilerplate question about how he personally felt about the election returns. Barry's response what that he wouldn't answer because he's boycotting City Paper, which LL found odd given that Barry had just spoken to LL for eight minutes. Barry's response was that he was boycotting speaking to CP about politics but would speak to "the devil" when it comes to economic development issues. Okay, then. News time:
First off, big props to DCist's Martin Austermuhle for digging up Almost Mayor Vincent Gray's yearbook pictures at Dunbar and George Washington University. If you've ever seen Gray's son, Carlos Gray, you can now rest assured that he wasn't adopted. Spittin' image.
So, What Do You Want To Talk About? I Dunno, What Do You Wanna Talk About?: Today is the big day, Gray and Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee are set to meet at noon at Gray's office where they will no doubt agree to settle their differences over a rousing game of Connect Four. Reporters will be camped out just outside Gray's office, waiting to yell questions at the pair as soon as they emerge. LL's prediction: the phrase "constructive dialogue" is due for a workout today. In a curtain raiser, courtesy of the Post's Nick Anderson and Bill Turque, we learn that anonymous sources close to Gray say he was none too pleased when Rhee called the election results "devastating" but is keeping an open mind until after they meet. (Rhee later walked back from her comments, no doubt on the advice of Anita Dunn.) We've also learned EdSec Arne Duncan is trying to keep Rhee in her post, and "Terence Golden, former chairman of the Federal City Council, an influential group of District business leaders" said he too wants Rhee to stay. Mark Segraves reports that Gray is open to rehiring laid off teachers who were let go for fiscal reasons. And Freeman Klopott at the Examiner reminds us that Gray was backed by the teachers' union while Council Chairman Kwame Brown was not. All in all, LL isn't holding his breath for some big announcement right after the talk, but who knows? Read more at the Times.
AFTER THE JUMP: Fenty write-in; Overtime; Mental Problems ...
Fenty Write-In: Psst, wanna hear a secret? There's a Adrian Fenty write-in campaign going on, and you know what? It's just might keep Fenty in office. Or at least, so implies Fenty Diehard Ron Moten in this blog post from the Post's Tim Craig about a Facebook page urging people to write-in Fenty during the general election. "'I've heard a lot of people say they are not voting for Gray,' Moten said. 'That is what I am hearing on the streets, so anything is possible.' Moten, one of Fenty's chief boosters during the campaign, added he won't be supporting Gray in the general because he thinks he ran "a crooked campaign.' 'As all of this stuff comes out and people feel like they got cheated, who knows what will happen with a write-in,' Moten said." Who knows, indeed? Oh wait, LL knows! It ain't gonna happen.
Time and Half, All of the Time: Klopott tells us the city's fire department went $4 million over its overtime budget this year. That's actually a big decrease from previous years—a fact Freeman doesn't mention until the end of the story, but oh well. The news is that new rules are going into effect this coming fiscal year (which starts next month) that will put a $20,000 annual cap on overtime per employee. That'll likely sting some of the firefighters who have pulling in $100,000 a year in overtime in past years. It also sounds like the fire department isn't really ready to implement those new changes. "'We're still reviewing [the new regulations] closely to see what impact there's going to be,' Assistant Chief Al Jeffery told The Examiner. 'We have no conclusions on those yet.'" Might wanna get on that.
That's Mental: Arrested youths in the District often lack access to good mental health care, a new report finds, just in time for a hearing on the District's troubled juvenile justice system. The hearing will be the first for Robert Hildum, who was tapped by Attorney General Peter Nickles to try and turn the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services around, reports Henri Cauvin at the Post. Juveniles who are housed in the department's two detention centers generally receive good mental health care, Hildum said. But services for the hundreds of juveniles who are supervised by DYRS in the community, often after a stay in a detention facility, are a different story. 'I think we're doing a superb job in the facilities, but we really need to make sure it follows them out the door,' Hildum said. Intensive individual and family therapy programs have been 'underutilized,' Hildum said, and instead, some juveniles who might have benefited from such interventions ended up in residential treatment facilities outside of the city. 'I don't think the services have been matched up as well as they should be,' Hildum said."
Gary Imhoff continues to take uninformed national pundits to task for misreading the mayoral election [DCWatch]
If you don't like seeing dogs in public, don't go out in public [Post]
Council meetings: 11 p.m. hearings on juvenile justice and fire department overtime. 4 p.m. meeting on 6th district police substation.