Loose Lips Daily: Brown Needs to Transition Too Edition
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:
Good morning sweet readers! Boy, did it ever get dark early yesterday. LL feels like he's back in Alaska. News time:
A Team of Lobbyists: Almost Council Chairman Kwame Brown unveiled his boating club transition team yesterday to a pesky press corps who wanted to know why the team was so lobbyist-heavy, why a transition could cost $150,000 (which will come from private donors), and why Brown even needs a transition team in the first place. "Brown said Monday he will use his eight-week transition period to conduct a top-to-bottom review of council operations. Brown said he wants to 'improve the way the council does business' and to ensure that the government is more 'open and responsive to residents,'" reports the Post's Ann Marimow. Brown announced his transition would be led by Gregory McCarthy, vice president for government affairs for the Washington Nationals. McCarthy, who was a deputy chief of staff to former mayor Anthony Williams, said he is coming up with recommendations that will serve as a "blueprint not a dust collector" for Brown's tenure. ... Brown said he would not accept public funds to cover the cost of the transition and instead plans to raise up to $150,000 in private donations. Brown said he would accept individual contributions of up to $25,000 and disclose the names of donors after the transition period. District law prohibits contributions of more than $2,000 to a political candidate, but the city's campaign finance regulations do not cover the transition period. Brown, an at-large council member first elected in 2004, said the money would pay for a Web site, research and travel. He said he plans to meet with the leaders of city councils in Los Angeles and Atlanta. Other transition team members include Walter Smith, head of the nonprofit public policy organization DC Appleseed; Jeffery Humber, past chairman of the board of the Washington Convention Center Authority; Rod Woodson, a lobbyist who was general counsel to the city's Housing Finance Agency; and Brown's campaign manager and chief of staff, Irma Esparza Diggs." As for who gets which committee assignment, Brown's only giving boilerplate "everything is on the table" answers for now, though just for fun he should put Marion Barry in charge of the finance committee, to see Jack Evans' reaction. See WAMU as well.
AFTER THE JUMP: More Budget Pain; No Answers on DC9; Special Election Madness Begins ...
Here Comes the Pain Again: Props to WUSA9 for this headline: "DC, Get Ready for the Pain." In the accompanying story, Bruce Johnson, reveals that Almost Mayor Vince Gray and CFO Natwar Gandhi were in meetings yesterday trying to figure out how to close the city's $175 million budget gap.
Still No Answers: Protesters went to the Wilson Building yesterday to express their outrage over the dropped murder charges in death of Ali Mohammed outside DC9. "One of the protesters, Mohammed's cousin, Nunu Wako, told reporters, "We will never rest until we get justice." Later on, Wako held up a sign that displayed a photograph of a blood-spattered crosswalk that was taken the day her relative died. "Whose blood is this?" the sign asked. Originally, cops and prosecutors contended that the five DC9 men once scheduled to have a preliminary hearing today were guilty of murder. Cops said a witness told them the men punched and stomped Mohammed for vandalizing the club. The charges were eventually downgraded to aggravated assault, though, and have now been dropped all together," says WCP's Rend Smith. MyFoxDC has a round up of the whole saga.
Special Madness: Five folks have picked up the needed packets to be eligible to win Democratic State Committee's pick to replace Brown on the council for a few months before a special election is held, reports Mike DeBonis. "They are Sekou Biddle, the incumbent Ward 4 representative on the State Board of Education; Vincent Orange, the former Ward 5 council member whose campaign for the chairmanship fell short; Jacque Patterson, a Federal City Council staffer who also chairs the Ward 8 Democrats; and Kelvin Robinson, the former chief of staff to Mayor Anthony A. Williams who ran unsuccessfully for the Ward 6 seat this year. ... Stanley Mayes, a Ward 1 lawyer, has also picked up petitions." DeBonis also reports that the general counsel of the Board of Elections and Ethics says Councilmember Michael A. Brown can't switch his party affiliation from an independent to a Democrat and automatically have Kwame Brown's seat.
It's So Hard, To Say Goodbye, To Yesterday: WBJ's Michael Neibauer has the news that Fenty's staffers have been given instructions on how to resign from their jobs. "It's traditional that one mayor's appointees and top hires resign ahead of the next mayor's arrival. But this news makes it so, well, real, that Mayor Adrian Fenty's brief reign is quickly coming to an end. Hundreds of employees will soon be out of a job. ... The human resource documents, essentially walking papers, direct certain employees to submit resignation letters, at the request of the mayor, effective Dec. 31. They describe, said one recipient, what happens if the resignation is accepted, when the last check goes out, how long insurance benefits remain in place, options for continued medical coverage and what happens if the employee accepts a new government job after Jan. 1."
D.C. settles for $10 million for a sickening story of foster care abuse.
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Big deal, LL bikes 30.
What could be more American than the National Mall and Coca-Cola?
Council: Legislative meeting. Final vote schedule on wildlife protection act. 11 a.m.