Graham relinquishes D.C. cab oversight

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After his chief of staff was arrested last month for allegedly taking bribes in exchange for pushing legislation that would benefit some in the taxi business, D.C. Council member Jim Graham has decided to give up oversight of taxicabs in D.C
By Tim Craig
Tuesday, October 20, 2009

D.C. Council member Jim Graham (D-Ward 1) is giving up oversight of the city's taxicabs after his chief of staff was arrested last month for allegedly taking a bribe from a member of the industry.

Graham sent council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) a letter Monday asking that taxicab oversight be transferred from the Committee on Public Works and Transportation, which Graham chairs, to the Committee of the Whole.

Graham's chief of staff, Ted Loza, was arrested Sept. 24 on charges that he accepted $1,500 in bribes and free trips from an undercover FBI informant in exchange for pushing legislation that would benefit some in the taxi business.

Graham, who has not been charged with any wrongdoing, initially resisted calls that he give up oversight of taxicabs because of the ongoing federal investigation.

But council members say Graham was under mounting pressure from Gray to relinquish oversight of the industry, including the D. C. Taxicab Commission.

"Though I have committed no crime, nor am I reportedly the target of any investigation, I want to ensure that Taxicab Commission oversight continues without any distractions relating to the Ted Loza indictment," Graham said in his letter to Gray.


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