The D.C. Council cut short an administrative meeting this morning after a group of residents protested outside, demanding to sit in.
The group included more than a dozen members of “Green Teams” upset at cuts to funding for their program, which hires young men and women, many recently released from prison, to supplement city public works services in some neighborhoods.
The meeting was called for 11:30 a.m., 90 minutes before the D.C. Council is set to take a final vote on the 2012 budget. It was expected that the members would discuss budget amendement to be presented later in the day. According to city open meetings law, the meeting is open to the public unless the council votes to close it for a specified reason
In addition to the protesters, WRC-TV reporter Tom Sherwood was also initially prevented from entering the room, but he and other non-members were allowed in to the conference room just off the Council chambers.
There was suggestion of closing the meeting, which was resisted by Jim Graham (D-Ward 1) and Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6). Instead the agenda was cut short. Members briefly discussed placing an ATM machine and a fitness center in the John A. Wilson Building.