As much as you griped about it being dark and cold this morning, I hope everyone has a chance to appreciate the fall weather. Looks like this might be the last week of sixty degree weather, so enjoy it while you can. As you probably know, here in DC we don't so much have seasons as we have winter and summer, both of which are roughly six months long.
In honor of it being Monday, here's a clip for all the nerds out there. That's actually most of you, except for all the people from WMATA who come here. For their sake, though, I hope they have a sense of humor as well. Fun fact, that sort of bothers me, High Fidelity came out eight years ago.
Annnnnnd now, today's news. Let's get the depressing stuff out of the way first.
Violent crime strikes Petworth again, shootings in Columbia Heights and Bloomingdale as well. It was a violent weekend in the District, with a shooting death Friday night in Petworth, as well as a Saturday morning officer-involved fatal shooting on Upshur Street. I've got more on that over at my Serious Business web site. Petworth has been rocked by a number of shootings in the past week, which is actually out of the ordinary. As much as I like to say "welcome to the beautiful life" extremely sarcastically, it is true that gun violence has been down this year in Petworth. We'll see if this past week is an anomaly, or if it continues.
More complicated government shenanigans. This time it involves Mayor Fenty, the DC Housing Authority and construction contracts. The City Paper has a good FAQ on the latest controversy, but here's the very brief summary. Mayor Fenty sent a dozen parks and recreation construction contracts to the DC Housing Authority. The DCHA then gave these contracts to "friends" of the Mayor without any DC Council oversight. The total price tag of these contracts is over $82 million. On Friday, District Attorney General Peter "transparency is for suckers" Nickles determined that yes, the DCHA must send contracts of over $1 million to the Council. Another slap in the face to the Council. Things aren't looking pretty. Makes the whole Parks and Recreation saga a bit more interesting. Also of note, Ximena Hartstock gets a reprieve, being renamed as the Acting Director of DPR. She gets another 180 days in her job, but after that she is out.
Man accused of pimping out his foster child on K Street. A Temple Hills man is in custody facing charges of sex trafficking. Shelby Lewis is accused of raping his 12-year-old foster child, and selling her for sex. Lewis was arrested after police found two of his teenage prostitutes walking K Street.
Would 14th Street like some crêpes with that wine and cheese? Another day, another fancy new place slated to open on 14th Street. Sometimes, though, the trendiness gets a bit out of hand. Prince of Petworth reports that not one, but two "crepes spots" (the word is crêperie) will be opening on 14th Street. In fact, they are opening almost exactly across the street from each other. I'm not joking, you'll be able to look out the window and see the competition. Who will win the crêpe wars? I'm going to go out on a limb here and say neither. Having two choices will result in neither attracting enough business to stay afloat.
Same-sex marriage fiasco underway. Anti gay-marriage activists staged protests this weekend in anticipation of today's public hearings. Many are calling to put the issue on the ballot, rather than let the DC Council "create laws." Previous efforts to have a public referendum on gay marriage have failed. The Board of Elections and Ethics have repeatedly said that you cannot have a public vote on a measure that is discriminatory. Makes sense. At the Wilson Building, a marathon session of public testimony is expected this afternoon. 269 people have signed up to testify.