Loose Lips

Gray to Barry: Knock if Off

Mayor Vince Gray sent a letter to Ward 8 Councilmember Marion Barry today kindly asking him: what the shit is this?

Barry has long made it a habit of issuing disapproval resolutions, a legislative stalling tactic that any councilmember can do to put the breaks on all kinds of legislation and city functions. Most recently, Barry introduced a disapproval resolution to halt $1.5 million in funding for security upgrades at New Beginnings, the city's troubled juvie jail operated by the Department of Youth Rehabilitative Services.

"These security upgrades are necessary for DYRS to protect the health, safety and welfare of the youth within the care of the Department and the greater community," writes Gray in his letter to Barry. "By virtue of this disapproval resolution you introduced, we already have lost more than a month in achieving the upgrades everyone, including you, agrees are important."

Barry wasn't immediately available for comment. This summer, he voted against the confirmation of Gray's pick, Neil Stanley, to lead DYRS. Stanley's still on the job anyway, so maybe Barry's still unhappy with the pick. Or maybe he just wants attention.

The full letter:

[scribd id=64311330 key=key-1fot9pd7ysvy2863o8ha mode=list]


  • Southeast Ken

    They both need to hand dance with each other and then go sit in a corner out of sight.

  • AMNeighbor

    Actually, this is Marion Barry as the force for fiscal discipline in DC government -- we can now simply refer to him as "Tea Party" Barry

  • Jes’ sayin’

    No, that's "Tea Bag Barry", according to the young lady he kicked out of the hotel room in Denver.

  • Ward-8

    Barry still playing his games and can't tell the difference between a need that just don't benefit him and his pay roll hookeror the overall Community. This is a need for the security and safety of staff and the community and is not cocaine or rocket science. Personaly I feel Barry need to finally retire so that some one with new ideas and energy to represent Ward-8, I am sick and tired of being sick and tired of him.

  • Drez

    Not sure a formal letter telling him to knock it off was called for when it's far more likely that all these disapproval resolutions are the result of one of his staffers falling asleep with their finger on the "send" key.
    Basically, the only thing needed is a strong pot of coffee.
    Not that even if you led them to it you could make them drink...
    Ut maybe the smell would wake them up?

  • Typical DC BS

    @Southeast Ken, @Ward-8 - great comments.

  • Endthetyranny

    I think this article glosses over the fact that Barry DISAPPROVES EVERYTHING. To try to find meaning in this disapproval over every other disapproval is pointless. He literally disapproves everything to flex his muscles, get attention, and delay any sort of progress in the District. I know good workers who have quit their DC government jobs over procurement delays. You have no idea how frustrating not being able to contract for something in any sort of timely way can be for a person.

  • EP Sato

    Endthetyranny is right that Barry disapproves every single contract. Watch a Tuesday leg. session on channel 13. Barry files handfuls of disapproval notions every session! Then he lets 99% of the disapprovals lapse.

    I always thought it was Barry's way of getting under Fenty's skin, but apparently Barry does it to his allies too? Some of these disapprovals have been downright silly.

  • Truth Hurts

    Gray's letter to Barry is a stunner because they've been mutual supporters and close buds for decades. The relationship must have badly deteriorated when Gray writes a letter rather than just calling Barry's cell phone.

  • Drez

    Like I say, asleep with his finger on the switch.