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Tweets From Inside the City Council Closed Session 072709

Tweets From Inside the City Council Closed Session 072709

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Published by Susie Cambria
Tweets from Inside the City Council’s Budget Revision Session,
July 27

Tweets by
Mike Debonis (Washington City Paper) and Mark Segraves (WTOP)
Tweets from Inside the City Council’s Budget Revision Session,
July 27

Tweets by
Mike Debonis (Washington City Paper) and Mark Segraves (WTOP)

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Published by: Susie Cambria on Jul 28, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/27/2009

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Tweets from Inside the City Council’s Budget Revision Session,July 27
Tweets by Mike Debonis (Washington City Paper) and Mark Segraves (WTOP)
mikedebonis
 1.
 
Done for the day. 'Excruciating detail' promised for tomorrow!2.
 
Reducing employee benefits is 'not shocking' Cheh says, but could adversely affectfire/police forced to retire by injury. 'A bitter pill'3.
 
Cheh now talking about reductions in benefits for former employees. Says Fentystaffers were 'quite chagrined' that she is questioning this.4.
 
OCFO will have 225 Virginia Ave purchase numbers by tomorrow. Evans calculatesthat $9M rent savings would float a $100M note.5.
 
Council mulls purchase of 225 Virginia Ave. to save on ridiculous rent. Gray says let'slook at the numbers.6.
 
Lots of handwringing over 225 Virginia Ave. SE and the astronomical lease thereto.'Outrageous!' say several7.
 
Bad cell phone etiquette from the mayor for life...talking full volume through Wellsexplanation of CFSA Medicaid billing8.
 
Wells and Catania argue over who had oversight FAIL on DDS $6 million spendingpressure.9.
 
Mendelson blames ‘bad management’ for $5.1 million in overspending on firedepartment overtime.10.
 
Now looking at spending pressures. Widespread shock at $5.4 million in DPRseverance costs. Another $2.5 million in school construction severance too.
 
Name mikedebonis
 
Location Washington, D.C., USA
 
Webhttp://washingtoncitypaper.com 
 
Bio Loose Lips columnist for Washington City Paper
 
http://twitter.com/mikedebonis 
 
Susie Cambria, MSWPublic Policy Consultant
 
Start at the bottom and work your way to the top of each list. 
4006 Hamilton Street
Hyattsville, MD
20781Phone: 301.832.2339
Email: secambria@gmail.com
Web: http://susiecambria.blogspot.com
 
 
 11.
 
Looks like consensus is to keep SYEP to six weeks--in FY 2010. Looks like for FY2009, as Graham says, the die is already cast.12.
 
Thomas makes case that kids, rich or poor, are depending on their summer jobincome.13.
 
M Brown: 'if TANF is on the table, how is summer jobs not on the table?'14.
 
Mendelson points out SYEP cuts may be a lost cause--if cut on Friday, mayor wouldhave two weeks to delay. Program ends in two weeks.15.
 
Even Evans wants to shorten SYEP!16.
 
Wells at first supported 10 week program, now says he would support shorter having'seen how poorly run this has been.'17.
 
CFO rep says cutting off program at 6 weeks would indeed save as much as $23million. K Brown says let's take a look.18.
 
Here we go: Members debate funding the full summer jobs program.19.
 
Catania says all political promises, ballpark and otherwise, have to be put off for twoyears. 'I agree' say Wells and Barry. Evans doesn't.20.
 
Excess in ballpark fund supposed to be used to pay down stadium debt. 'Or we coulduse it for soccer!' says Barry.21.
 
Evans remembers the famous 'fifth quarter' budget gambit Barry once tried. Barrylaughs. 'That didn't work, did it?'22.
 
Evans makes a point: if you cut $10 million from the schools, might as well cut $100million --'you catch the same amount of hell no matter how much you cut.’ 23.
 
Barry says he is shocked--shocked!--that ballpark community benefits would be usedto close the gap.24.
 
Graham is shocked, shocked!, that Fenty would raid his parking meter hike--meantfor TANF, HPAP--for gap closing: 'They took it all!’ 25.
 
Catania tells colleagues not to come looking for money out of his agencies. Wordsensue with Graham.26.
 
Gray’s plan: forget the rainy day fund. Take $125 million from FY 2010 to fix FY2009 and cut the hell out of FY 2010.27.
 
Evans says without cuts, members will be having another problem in a year--'with anelection two months off.' Says Barry: ‘I'm not running.’ 28.
 
Barry warns of 'bitter pills' in FY 2011. 'It's going to be a heartbreaker.' Taxincreases, he says, are the only way out.29.
 
Evans says the issue is: Do we maintain our 'cushions' by making 'significantreductions' in expenditures.30.
 
Catania does not care for this talk of piddling amounts of workers comp money--'change you could find under the couch’ 31.
 
As members talk of how Fenty plans to raid workers comp for $24.6 million, they'reenjoying some delicious popcorn.32.
 
Live tweeting DC Council budget talks! What could be more exciting?
 
 
SegravesWTOP
 1.
 
DC has been paying rent on VA Ave since 2007. Other agencies slated to movethere, OCTO and Arts and Humanities2.
 
City pays $12 million per year in rent. Wells says mayor wants to. Buy building for$85 million plus another $85 million in upgrades. It would house CFSA3.
 
Talk has turned to 225 Virginia Ave, the old Washington Star building near the SEFreeway.4.
 
The debate over summer youth funding rages on. Majority want to cut it.5.
 
Topic now, summer jobs. CMs upset the EOM won't say how much spent so far. Wellssays he regrets vote to extend, Evans agrees.6.
 
One of Fenty proposed diversions of DDOT unified fund would cut school crossingguards according to Graham7.
 
More baseball tax talk. Catania points out the promise to reduce the baseball tax rateif they collected a surplus.8.
 
Now on parking tax revenue. Graham says the taxes should be raised. Barry says ithasn’t been raised in years, Evans says “shhhhh” 9.
 
Evans says the choices are "intolerable" but added a political reality, “we can cut $10million from schools. But we'll catch hell, so we may as well cut $50 million becausewe will catch just as much hell” 10.
 
Evans is explaining that a commitment was made to business and community abouthow baseball taxes would be used to pay off stadium. Bonds and the rest of moneywould fund community programs. Evans says Fenty plan goes back on those.11.
 
CMs talking about Fenty proposal to divert $13.9 million from community benefitsfund which comes from baseball District taxes.12.
 
Graham is upset that the $4 million in revenue from new parking meters which wasmeant for TANF and others will go to close budget gap next year13.
 
The CMs seem to agree with Gray on the Rainy Day Fund.14.
 
Gray would use the $106 million fund balance for FY 2010 and make cuts then ratherthan use $125 million from Rainy Day Fund as Fenty wants.15.
 
Catania says “we can't tax and cut our way out of the Fiscal Year 09” Gray says hewants to take the money from FY 2010.16.
 
Gray says the previous budget gaps were fixed with stimulus money and that putsoff the problem but won't fix. “The problem is a tsunami.” 17.
 
Gray wants to know if the new Federal education dollars could be used to help withbudget woe.18.
 
Evans pointed out that the Council can make tough cuts now or later, “two monthsbefore an election.” 19.
 
The issue with the DOES O-type funds is the conversion of workers comp andunemployment fund to public use. Unions have sued other jurisdictions20.
 
Gray's chief of staff has made fresh popcorn for everyone. The noise from the eatingis so loud nobody can hear.21.
 
Gray says he won't accept some of these proposals. Gray is focusing on use of cashreserves he says he wants to avoid.22.
 
Graham is asking if the Council plans on blocking any of the Mayor's proposals. “Won't that create a problem for us?” 23.
 
CMs are expressing concerns about Mayor's proposed conversions of O-type funds atDOES being legal.
 
Name Mark Segraves
 
Webhttp://www.wtop.com 
 
http://twitter.com/SegravesWTOP 

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