State Gives Bayview Housing Funds
Bayview, one of Virginia's poorest communities, will receive an additional $400,000 state grant to build housing, Gov. James S. Gilmore III (R) announced.
The funds will be used to develop 10 single-family detached housing units. The additional money is part of a collaborative effort by Bayview leaders and state and federal agencies to improve conditions in the 114-person community of 52 dilapidated shacks. The community on Virginia's Eastern Shore has existed for more than a century without running water, plumbing or sewage treatment facilities.
This month, state and federal grants totaling $1.55 million were announced to improve plumbing and housing for Bayview. In May, $3 million in federal aid was announced to build a community center and improve housing conditions and drinking water.
State Fairgrounds Sold; New Site Sought
The Virginia State Fair could have a new home as early as next year after the sale of the fairgrounds site in Richmond yesterday to the owners of a track that holds two annual NASCAR Winston Cup events.
Richmond International Raceway plans to use the adjacent 315-acre site for parking at NASCAR races. Atlantic Rural Exposition, the fair's parent company, will use the site for the fair this fall and in 2000 if a new site is not ready.
ARE President Otis Brown said the nonprofit company is looking at three potential sites in the Richmond area, but he declined to say where they are.
Gilmore Adviser Enters Private Practice
Gov. James S. Gilmore III (R) is losing a trusted legal and policy adviser to a nationally known Richmond law firm after Labor Day.
David E. Anderson, whose job as counselor to the governor made him a member of Gilmore's Cabinet, will become a partner in McGuire, Woods, Battle & Boothe, a law firm of more than 500 lawyers in six states, the District and three foreign countries.
Nurses, Hospital Continue Talks
Negotiators for Children's Hospital and 413 unionized nurses continued contract talks last night as today's 7 a.m. strike deadline approached, officials said.
The major economic issues already have been settled, including a complex compensation package that will raise the total payroll for nurses 15 percent over three years, hospital officials said. But three key obstacles remained yesterday, according to both sides.
The registered nurses want the hospital to be equipped with safety needles that reduce accidental worker infections and to stop using natural rubber latex products, such as gloves, known to cause allergic reactions in a growing number of health care workers. The hospital said it accepts those goals but cannot achieve them as quickly as the nurses want.
The two sides also are discussing whether the hospital should maintain the power, when the hospital census is high, to require nurses to work overtime shifts.
Hospital officials said that if the nurses go on strike, they are prepared to meet patients' nursing needs with temporary nurses and hospital managers who are registered nurses.
Mayor Pays Fine for Ethics Violation
D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams (D) has submitted a personal check for $1,000 to the Office of Campaign Finance and Ethics to pay his fines for failing to disclose $40,000 he received from two consulting contracts last year.
The $1,000, or $500 for each violation, was the maximum penalty under the city's current law. The D.C. Council is considering increasing the fines in the future.
Last month, Cecilyn E. Collier-Montgomery, director of the campaign finance office, decided that Williams had violated the city's campaign finance code by failing to report earnings on his financial disclosure statement during the 1998 mayoral campaign and his transition into office.
At the time, Williams agreed that he was wrong and said he would pay the money from his personal account.
Four Hurt When Car Hits Firetruck
Four people were injured and traffic was slowed to a trickle yesterday at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW--one of the city's busiest intersections-- when a car crashed into a firetruck responding to an emergency call.
Authorities said it was the third time in two weeks that D.C. firetrucks have been involved in collisions with vehicles that failed to yield. Two unrelated crashes July 16 left five people injured and a firetruck demolished.
Yesterday's collision occurred about 10:10 a.m., when a car going north on 14th Street NW hit a westbound firetruck.
Three firefighters and the car's driver, who was cited for failing to yield to an emergency vehicle, were treated at hospitals and released, authorities said.
De Francis Asks for Bigger Cut of Bets
Racetrack owner Joseph A. De Francis says he will have to scale back his plan to renovate Laurel and Pimlico racetracks unless he gets an additional cut from the money bet by racing fans.
De Francis said at a meeting of the Maryland Racing Commission that the Maryland Jockey Club has gone as far as it can in committing $32.5 million of its money toward the $60 million plan to improve facilities at the state's two thoroughbred tracks and promote the racing industry.
Money called the takeout is withheld from each bet rather than being paid back to fans who pick the winning horses. The state keeps part of the money, and the rest goes to track owners and other segments of the racing industry such as horse owners and breeders.
At a hearing last month, state legislative leaders took no position on the request from De Francis when the racing industry's plans to improve and promote thoroughbred and harness tracks were presented.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"The teachers who are certified know they are the hot commodity right now. They can pick and choose."
-- Cecelia Jones-Bowlding, principal of a Prince George's County elementary school, on the demand, across the region, for qualified teachers.