04/24/14 10:52am


Thanks to Eckington Chick for letting us know in this morning’s rant/revel:

“Rave: The DC DMV reversing its stance on the Real ID. We don’t have to get our licenses changed until they expire. Yeah!! See item #6 on their page:

When will the District of Columbia begin issuing REAL ID credentials?

May 1, 2014. However, this date only impacts those residents obtaining a DC license for the first time, renewing their licenses or who need to replace their license due to it being lost, stolen or an address change. Your existing DC DMV credential will remain valid until its expiration date and will be accepted for federal purposes (such as entering federal buildings and boarding airplanes).”

UPDATE: From Council Member at Large David Grosso’s office:

Just got off phone w @dcdmv and now have clarification. tl:dr = no one needs to renew unless DL expires

Those deadlines are for DC DMV to be compliant with REAL ID. They do not affect individuals’ DL/IDs

If my DL expires in 2018, it’s OK b/c feds have already certified DC’s process for complying w REAL ID.”

04/17/14 1:25pm

Brookland’s Finest future home at 12th and Jackson Street, NE

From an email:

“Attached is a DC Superior Court decision handed down yesterday. I represented the plaintiff in the case. The case is a FOIA case – one of my practice areas.

The bottom line is that An ANC Commissioner got caught trying to delete a digital public document (an audio recording of an SMD meting) rather than produce it in compliance with a court order.

As a result:

The court referred the matter to both the DOJ and OAG for criminal prosecution of Commissioner Carolyn Steptoe for perjury and for attempted destruction of a public record.

The court found ANC 5B in contempt and ordered it to pay for the cost to hire a forensic computer firm to recover the audio file Commissioner Steptoe tried to delete.

The case arose from the controversy over the Brookland’s Finest liquor license application. My client asked ANC 5B for documents that Commissioner Steptoe gave to her colleagues that she said supported her position that ANC 5B should oppose the license application. My client also sought a copy of the audio recording Commissioner Steptoe made of her April 27, 2013 SMD meeting.

At a march 19, 2014 evidentiary hearing, Commissioner Steptoe testified that she denied my client’s FOIA requests because she did not like the requesters and thought their requests were “rude.”

In the end, ANC 5B was forced to produce all of the documents.”

You can read the full ruling below:

Crimmins v DC Final Order (PDF)

I have heartburn just reading this, can’t imagine actually being involved in it. And in happier news – can’t wait for Brookland’s Finest to finally be able to open soon!!

04/16/14 10:55am


Been getting tons of emails about the new REAL ID:

“Dear PoPville,

I just saw an email about this new ‘REAL ID’ thing the DC DMV is rolling out? Maybe it’s me but it seems a tad confusing. Are we being required to get new IDs, or is there just a new protocol, requiring additional sources of documentation when renewing or getting a new license? If you’re not up for a new license any time soon (i.e. just got mine renewed at the end of 2013- in the new DC license format), do we have to do anything, or is this just a heads up that more documents will be required from here on out, whenever you have to go get a new license?
Thanks for any clarity!”

Effective May 1, 2014, DC DMV will begin issuing REAL ID driver licenses and identification cards. These credentials will meet the REAL ID security standards established by the Federal Government.The document requirements for proof of DC residencyproof of Social Security Number, and proof of identity have changed for everyone, and DC DMV will need to revalidate these documents prior to issuing a REAL ID credential. Therefore, be sure to view the list of acceptable documents and bring those with you when you visit a DC DMV Service Center when obtaining, converting, renewing, or requesting a duplicate credential. DC DMV moved to a central issuance process in November 2013 and will mail your credential to you. Without the required documentation, DC DMV will not be able to issue you a REAL ID driver license or identification card. There are no exceptions to the document requirements or mailing of credentials. 

Throughout the next year, residents will be notified by DC DMV to update their driver license or ID card to the REAL ID credential. For these notifications, residents will not be a charged a fee. However, the fees are the same for residents who are obtaining a credential for the first time or who are converting an out-of-state license or ID, as well as those who are renewing or requesting a duplicate credential.

04/09/14 12:10pm

From a press release:

“Mayor Vincent C. Gray and District Department of Transportation (DDOT) Director Terry Bellamy today launched the District’s sixth annual Potholepalooza campaign to expedite pothole repairs on roadways across the city. The Mayor and Bellamy helped fill potholes near the intersection of G Street and Benning Road SE to usher in DDOT’s month-long campaign for aggressively repairing potholes caused by winter weather.

This year’s Potholepalooza will run through May 9. During Potholepalooza, residents and commuters are encouraged to phone, go online, tweet, email or use the DC311 smartphone app to submit requests for pothole repairs. Residents can track the Potholepalooza campaign’s progress via an online map.

How to Report a Pothole

Residents and commuters can notify DDOT about potholes in a variety of ways:

1) Call the Mayor’s Call Center at 311,
2) Use the Online Service Request Center at 311.dc.gov,
3) Send a tweet to twitter.com/DDOTDC,
4) Email Potholepalooza@dc.gov, or
5) Use the District’s new DC311 smartphone application.

Those who report potholes should identify the precise location of the hazard, including the correct quadrant (Northwest, Northeast, Southeast, Southwest) of the District. They should provide as much detail as possible about the hazard, including the approximate size and depth of the pothole. DDOT crews will also be out and about proactively identifying potholes.

How is a pothole repaired?

Road crews fix a pothole by filling it with replacement pavement material. Cold patches are used for small potholes in low-traffic areas because they can be quickly applied. Hot asphalt is used in high-traffic areas or on large potholes, because it will hold much more effectively. If the road has become pitted with potholes, it may need to be resurfaced. Resurfacing a roadway involves stripping the upper layers of asphalt off, roughening the bottom layers, and applying a new upper roadway surface.”


“Dear PoPville,

The garbage can fairies have carpet bombed our neighborhood. Everybody got two cans – whether we need them or not.

What does one do if we don’t need them, have our own trash service (Tenleytown Trash) and want to return them?”

Ed. Note: Seems like a shame to have them recycled with the yellow “Take Me!” signs – anyone know if there is a way to opt out of getting the new cans?

04/08/14 3:15pm

This is pretty cool – from DDOE:

“The District of Columbia has begun work to “daylight” 1,600 linear feet of stream in northwest Washington, DC. This is the first time that stream daylighting, the act of uncovering waterways previously piped in an effort to restore natural habitat, has been undertaken in the District. The stream that is being restored originates from a spring on National Park Service land off Connecticut Avenue and flows to a bridge near the intersection of 36th Street, NW and Nevada Avenue, NW. At this point, the stream enters a pipe which flows beneath Broad Branch Road until the water comes again to the surface as Broad Branch, a tributary to Rock Creek.”

04/07/14 3:15pm

From a press release:

“Mayor Vincent C. Gray announced today that he has selected Ellen McCarthy to serve as Director of the DC Office of Planning (OP). McCarthy replaces Harriet Tregoning, who resigned in February to join the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. McCarthy begins her role Monday, April 14, 2014.

“Ellen brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in planning to the Office of Planning at a critical and exciting time in the District of Columbia,” said Mayor Gray. “She is excited about continuing to help the District grow and become even more vibrant while respecting the city’s rich history and unique character.”

McCarthy has more than 40 years of experience in the planning field, including serving as Director of Planning and Land Use at two major law firms. She has assisted clients in obtaining development entitlements and advised on possible locations for developers, cultural institutions and sports facilities. Her clients included The Trump Organization, Madison Square Garden and the D.C. Public Library. She currently consults with developers and large institutions regarding planning and land use issues and also teaches in the graduate Urban Planning Program at Georgetown University. McCarthy previously served as Director of the DC Office of Planning from 2004 to 2007, where her accomplishments included overseeing the preparation of the first city-wide Comprehensive Plan in more than 20 years.

McCarthy earned a master’s degree in city planning from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in government from the University of Maryland at College Park where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and with high honors. McCarthy is a longtime resident of the District.”

04/02/14 6:32am

Photo by PoPville flickr user Beau Finley

From the DC Board of Elections:

Of 369,037 total Registered Voters in the District – 83,040 or 22.50% voted:

MURIEL E. BOWSER 35,899 (votes) 44.24%
VINCENT C. GRAY 26,209 32.30%
TOMMY WELLS 10,181 12.55%

ANITA D. BONDS 36,426 (votes) 52.85%
JOHN F. SETTLES, II 9,332 13.54%

BRIANNE K. NADEAU 5,755 (votes) 58.68%
JIM GRAHAM 4,003 40.82%

KENYAN McDUFFIE 8,363 (votes) 78.77%
KATHY HENDERSON 1,549 14.59%

CHARLES ALLEN 7,140 (votes) 57.95%
DARREL THOMPSON 5,156 41.85%

You can see full results here. Congrats to the winners.

04/01/14 3:15pm

From a press release:

“The mayor of the District of Columbia signed a bill decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana. The bill was authored by DC Councilmember Tommy Wells and championed by advocates from across the city including the NAACP, ACLU, Washington Lawyers Committee and the Drug Policy Alliance. The bill will now proceed to a 60 day review period by the United States Congress. All District laws are subject to Congressional review.

What the bill does:

Drops the simple possession of an ounce or less of marijuana from a criminal offense, which carries up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine, down to a civil offense with a fine of $25.

Outside of Alaska, that would be the smallest monetary fine of any of the states that have decriminalized the drug.

Reduces the maximum penalty for smoking marijuana from a $1000 fine and six months in jail to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

The production, sale, and possession of over an ounce would remain a criminal offense.”