Loose Lips

Vince Gray Takes Out the Trash

Vince Gray is really getting the hang of the whole shutdown mayor thing. After keeping the city operating despite the federal government shutdown, Gray has told Department of Public Works garbage collectors to start picking up trash in the city's federally owned parks.

The city won't be collecting trash at barricaded national monuments. Instead, the garbage trucks are focusing on the community parks that are, by a quirk of D.C.'s legal status, the responsibility of the largely furloughed National Park Service. The city doesn't expect to be reimbursed by the feds once the shutdown is over.

The pick-ups, which started on Wednesday, are aimed at preventing rats from feasting on the trash left behind in the parks. Lincoln Square and other parks in Capitol Hill have the worst rat problems, according to mayoral spokesman Pedro Ribeiro.

The abandoned garbage cans are yet another reason for Gray to be frustrated with Congress.  "I think he's getting ready to get out there with a pitchfork pretty soon," Ribeiro says.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • truth hurts

    LL, it's a bit misleading to say the city is operating despite the federal government shutdown. Although city employees are still receiving paychecks, the city's not paying its bills. Settlements, judgments, vendor invoices, etc. All basically shut down.

    Against this backdrop, I'm not sure collecting trash for the tea party sends the right message to dictator boehner and his band of anarchists.

  • Corky

    It's good PR to let Congress know that DC is a functioning city that ought to have budget autonomy.

  • truth hurts

    Fair point. Maybe dump the feds trash at boehner's crib.

  • george

    @ truth: I don't think it's a bad message. Republicans caused the shutdown, the District is rejecting the shutdown. Congressional strategy is not really our concern. Besides, Republican voters don't care if DC is shut down anyway, so there's no reason to martyr ourselves if we can help it.

  • drez

    They should look at Freedom Plaza.

  • Joan

    Leadership At Work!

  • Drez

    Not really.
    More like PR at work.

  • Chris hauser

    Is it true dc is not paying it's bills?


  • DCShadyBoots

    Much appreciated Mr. Mayor. Rats don't care whose responsibility it is to pick up the trash.

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