Schwartz Urges Bush to Pay for Security
D.C. Council member Carol Schwartz (R-At Large) wrote President Bush yesterday urging his administration to pay the District's estimated $17.3 million in costs for hosting his Jan. 20 inauguration.
Schwartz, the sole Republican on the 13-member panel, joined a roster of local and regional elected officials and members of Congress who have called on the president to reverse a stance by his Office of Management and Budget requiring that the District dip into $11.9 million in federal homeland security grants to the region.
Schwartz, appealing to Bush's "sense of fairness," cited federal precedent for separate reimbursement. The alternative, she said, "could result in the District being unable to be fully prepared to respond in the event of a terrorist attack," or else raiding local funds, hurting residents who depend on receiving "the most basic housing, health, education and other service" from the city.
Another Street Near Capitol Closed
The architect of the Capitol has closed East Capitol Street between First and Second streets until October as part of construction of the Capitol Visitor Center, the D.C. Department of Transportation announced last night.
Access to the Metro bus stops on the north and south sides of East Capitol Street will be maintained until further notice.
U.S. Capitol Police indefinitely closed First Street NE between Constitution Avenue and D Street in August, citing security.
New Site Selected for Charles Stadium
Charles County officials named a new site yesterday for a proposed 4,500-seat minor league baseball stadium and abandoned their initial plans to build in the village of Hughesville.
The new 72-acre spot, along Piney Branch Road just south of Waldorf, is in a mostly undeveloped area zoned for commercial and industrial development. Hundreds of residents fought to keep the stadium out of Hughesville and to protect its rural character.
The county owns about half the new site. Another segment will be donated by American Community Properties Trust, the developer of the St. Charles community, officials said. The county plans to request a $500,000 bond bill from the state legislature for design funding for the $18 million stadium, but some members of Southern Maryland's delegation said money was unlikely this year.
The Atlantic League has agreed to supply a team on the condition the ballpark is built, said Peter Kirk, chairman of Maryland Baseball LLC, the private partner in the stadium deal.
Bill Backs English as Official Language
Del. Patrick L. McDonough (R-Baltimore County) said yesterday that he is introducing legislation to designate English as Maryland's official language.