Metro seats new board member
Metro seats new board member
A lawyer with experience in transportation matters was sworn in Thursday as a member of Metro’s board of directors. Michael Goldman, who lives in Montgomery County and is a partner at Silverberg, Goldman & Bikoff in the District, will represent Maryland on the Metro board. He replaces Michael Barnes, who stepped down.
— Mark Berman
Agreement reached in Medicaid dispute
The District’s health-care finance director, Wayne Turnage, said Thursday he has reached an “agreement in principle” with D.C. Chartered Health Plan’s receiver to settle a dispute over Medicaid reimbursement rates for roughly $18 million. That sum would contribute toward the $47.5 million that the troubled former city health-care contractor is estimated to owe providers.
Turnage said he expects the federal government to pay its usual 70 percent share of the rate settlement. Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) is prepared to pay the remainder out of the District’s contingency fund, Turnage said — meaning taxpayers could be on the hook for roughly $35 million to settle the accounts of businessman Jeffrey E. Thompson’s once-thriving firm.
The plan could prove politically treacherous as Gray ponders a reelection bid. Thompson is the subject of a federal probe that includes Gray’s 2010 campaign.
— Mike DeBonis
End to D.C. photo enforcement sought
Freshman Rep. Kerry Bentivolio (R-Mich.) is drafting a bill that could ban or restrict the use of red-light and speed cameras in the District. Though Bentivolio’s draft would apply only to the city, his office said the final details aren’t finished.
If Bentivolio offers the bill, there is no guarantee it would get a hearing or a House vote, but Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) sounded the alarm over the proposal Thursday.
“In the District of Columbia, like everywhere else, local traffic laws are written by local elected officials, not members of Congress who are unaccountable to D.C. residents,” Norton said in a news release.
Bentivolio spokesman Matt Chisholm said his boss “was sent to Washington to protect the people’s rights, not take them away. The final version of this bill will do just that.”
— Ben Pershing
No one seriously injured in crash
No one was seriously injured when a car crashed into an office building that houses a restaurant in downtown Washington Tuesday, contrary to initial reports, police said Thursday.
A D.C. fire department official on the scene Tuesday said that a 2-year-old boy and two adult women suffered life-threatening injuries in the crash at 11th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW. A third woman was injured as well.
Officer Araz Alali clarified Thursday that no one suffered serious injuries.
Police have not stated what caused the car to jump a curb and crash into the office building. The car barreled through the outdoor seating area of chef Michel Richard’s Central restaurant. The restaurant remained open for business.
— Julie Zauzmer
Health-care interests heavy on lobbying
The health-care industry emerged as the biggest spender on lobbying services in Maryland during a six-month stretch that included this year’s legislative session, a dynamic driven in part by the state’s effort to implement the federal health-care law.
The Maryland Hospital Association and the Maryland State Medical Society top a new list of spending released by the state ethics commission, reporting expenditures of $380,448 and $303,182, respectively.
All told, health-care interests spent more than $3.6 million on lobbying between November and April, according to Common Cause Maryland.
According to the group, other industries that spent heavily in Annapolis included utility and energy companies ($1,858,460), builders and realtors ($1,363,898) and casinos and racing groups ($1,124,341).
— John Wagner
Slain victim ID’d in Chantilly incident
A 20-year-old man fatally stabbed his brother and injured another family member before turning a gun on himself, Fairfax County police said.
Police on Thursday released these new details about the fatal domestic incident, which happened inside a home in the 4100 block of Travers Court in Chantilly Tuesday morning.
According to police, the suspect stabbed his brother, 24-year-old Haseeb Raza, in the upper body. A second family member, a 61-year-old man, tried to intervene and also was stabbed in the upper body, police said. The suspect then apparently shot himself in the upper body.
Raza died from his injuries, but police said the other victim is expected to recover. The suspect remains hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.
It’s unclear what led to the confrontation.
— Maggie Fazeli Fard
Man impersonated FBI agent, police say
A Lorton man is accused of impersonating an FBI agent and sexually assaulting an employee at a local massage parlor, authorities in Fairfax County said Thursday.
Kedrick Evans, 48, was arrested on Tuesday and charged with abduction, sexual battery and two counts of impersonating a law enforcement officer, police said.
Police said that in May, they began receiving reports from massage parlors in the area that a customer had been displaying what he claimed were law enforcement credentials from the FBI. This week, a female employee of one of the massage parlors reported that the customer sexually assaulted her.
— Maggie Fazeli Fard