‘One city, one license’ prevails


The proposal to allow undocumented residents to secure driver’s licenses is being promoted as a safety measure. (Linda Davidson/The Washington Post)

When Mayor Vincent C. Gray unveiled his proposal in May to grant D.C. driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants, the cheers from advocates were mixed with grumbles over his intention to distinguish the licenses from standard-issue ones. The D.C. Council appears to have heard the grumbles loud and clear, with a committee voting Tuesday to leave the licenses of undocumented residents indistinguishable from those issued to legal residents. Committee chair Mary M. Cheh (D-Ward 3) initially opposed the two-ID solution, intended to comply with a 2005 federal law, but she says she came around. “I had to be convinced that there was a way to steer our way through this, and we figured it out,” she said. Meanwhile, Jim Graham (D-Ward 1) is pushing for further liberalization, while the Gray administration is warning the move could “open up a Pandora’s box” of consequences — including possibly leaving D.C. driver’s licenses invalid at airport security checkpoints. More from WaTimes and AP.

In other news:

Nathan Saunders ousted as Washington Teachers’ Union president: “They want more aggressive change than what I was dishing out,” he says (PostInformer)

Kaya Henderson et al. push back on key elements of David Catania education bill (PostWAMU-FM)

Mary Cheh says fire chief should resign; deputy mayor says he will “stay the course” (WaTimesWJLA-TVWUSA-TVWTTG-TVAPSTATter911)

Reta Lewis is running for mayor for reasons not yet explained (Loose LipsAPDCistWAMU-FM)

Twenty-four-year sentence for man who beat T.C. Maslin (Post)

Near Mount Vernon Square, city is making same no-parkland mistake it made in NoMa (Housing Complex)

D.C. will get its seal on Library of Congress stained-glass window (Examiner)  [Update, 5:30 p.m.: Actually, no, the Library of Congress has not agreed to this.]

Compared to states, D.C. has highest rate of hungry kids (HuffPo)

D.C. Auditor: We’re auditing ANCs, we swear! (CHotR)

Arrest made in Manny & Olga’s assault of drag performer (Post)

First shows announced at Lincoln Theatre under new management (GOGDCistWBJ)

They’re all rather white-bread (Arts Desk)

Kenyan McDuffie and Tommy Wells stand with allegedly underpaid Reagan Building service workers (MSNBC)

City hands another $180,000 to tech incubator (Housing Complex)

Businessman says he’s giving up fight over presidential yacht docked in Southwest (Reliable Source)

In D.C., as elsewhere, the preferred way to regulate medical marijuana is through zoning (Atlantic)

“It clearly makes sense to separate repeaters from first-time 9th-graders” (GGW)

Surprise: D.C. government not meeting wholly unrealistic small-business spending goal, audit concludes (WBJ)

Council members, now as ever, paying for sports tickets, office water, parade beads from constituent service funds (Loose Lips)

Cathy Lanier on Kojo today (WAMU-FM)

Streetcar line will require small power substations along H Street and Benning Road (GGW)

“So I must ask, what is so reprehensible about a program that saves people lives … ?” (Forest Hills Connection)

Meet your new Ward 5 Democrats officers (Informer)

Glover Park ice cream shop can stay open, for now (Current via Dish)

Growlers. Nothing but growlers. (Young & Hungry)

Why does the old State of the Union still smell like pee? (PoPville)

How snobby are we, really? (GOG)

Mike DeBonis covers local politics and government for The Washington Post. He also writes a blog and a political analysis column that runs on Fridays.
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Mike DeBonis | July 2, 2013