The first name of Keith Black, 24, a homicide victim whose body was found Saturday in Southeast Washington, was incorrectly stated in the Metro in Brief column April 22. (Published 4/24/03)


Former Senator to Head Bay Panel

Maryland Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) yesterday named a former Republican state senator with a long record as an environmentalist to chair a state commission charged with regulating development along the shores of the Chesapeake Bay.

Martin G. Madden of Howard County will assume the chairmanship of the 29-member Chesapeake Bay Critical Area Commission May 1. The Critical Area Commission, created in 1984, has authority to review and approve development within 1,000 feet of the bay and its tributaries and can block projects that would adversely affect water quality or wildlife habitats.

"The governor and I both share a commitment to the health of the bay," Madden said. "Protecting the bay with balanced environmental policies was an important priority for me as a legislator, and I look forward to working with all involved parties in preserving Maryland's greatest natural resource."

Madden was a member of the General Assembly from 1991 until his retirement last year, serving the final three years as Senate minority leader. Since Ehrlich's election in the fall, Madden has been a special assistant to the governor.

Environmental activists, who have been critical of Ehrlich's policies and appointments, praised Madden's selection. "It's great to have someone from the state that's qualified and has shown an interest in these issues get such an important post," said Sue Brown of the Maryland League of Conservation Voters.

Man Dies in Drive-by Shooting in Suitland

A drive-by shooter killed a young man in the parking lot of an apartment complex in Suitland last night, police said.

Residents of the 2700 block of Lewis Avenue called police when they heard the gunshots. Officers arrived to find the victim dead outside the apartment building about 9:30 p.m., said Cpl. Diane Richardson, a Prince George's County police spokeswoman .

10 Transfer-Eligible Schools Named

Montgomery County school officials announced yesterday the 10 elementary schools that parents will be able to switch their children out of under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

The schools -- Broad Acres, Burnt Mills, Gaithersburg, Harmony Hills, Highland, Kemp Mill, Rosemont, Summit Hall, Weller Road and Wheaton Woods -- were chosen because they failed to improve according to an index that considers attendance rates and scores on the now-discarded Maryland School Performance Assessment Program. Each is matched with two other schools that students may transfer into.

The 10 schools are the same ones that students were allowed to leave this year. Ninety-three students transferred, out of more than 6,000 eligible.


2 People Found Dead in SE, NE

Two people were found dead in the District over the weekend, police said.

The body of Kevin Black, 24, of the 6800 block of F Street in Seat Pleasant, was found Saturday afternoon in a grassy area along the Anacostia Freeway, near the exit ramp for Malcolm X Avenue SE. He had been stabbed several times.

An unidentified body was found in a burning dumpster about 3:30 a.m. Saturday in the 2100 block of Maryland Avenue NE, police said. The body was said to have been burned beyond recognition, and police did not release the victim's age or sex.

City Gets Money for Anacostia Cleanup

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christine Todd Whitman delivered a $50,000 check to the District yesterday to pay for water sampling and community meetings to help clean up the polluted Anacostia River.

The river is contaminated with pesticides, cancer-causing PCBs, heavy metals and other pollutants. EPA officials estimate that the Anacostia cleanup will cost $212 million. The river is one of eight urban waterways nationwide that the EPA is restoring.

Whitman bicycled two miles to the waterway from downtown with Mayor Anthony A. Williams (D) to announce the grant and to promote recreational activities along the river.


Fairfax Ends D.C., N.Y. School Trip Ban

Fairfax County School Superintendent Daniel A. Domenech has lifted the ban on field trips to the District and New York City.

For the last month, students in the region's largest school system were prohibited from visiting the two cities because of heightened terror alerts and the war with Iraq, though exceptions were made for "extraordinary circumstances."

Domenech said yesterday he decided that trips can resume because the terror threat level has been reduced from orange to yellow and because there has been no specific information about threats to either city. The ban on overseas trips remains in effect, he said, because the U.S. State Department is still issuing cautions for Americans traveling abroad.


Capitol Visitor Center Contract Awarded

Congress awarded a $144 million contract Friday to Tulsa-based Manhattan Construction Co. for the next construction stage of the Capitol Visitor Center, a giant project promising improved security and tourist comfort but facing criticism about mounting costs.

The visitor center, one of the most ambitious construction projects in the history of the Capitol, is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2005 at a cost of $373.5 million. The three-level underground facility will give visitors access to food, displays, theaters and gift shops. It will also allow security checks to be conducted away from the main building.

Ranking Democrat David R. Obey (Wis.) of the House Appropriations Committee this month balked at rising cost projections and questioned the architect of the Capitol's ability to manage the project without delays and cost overruns.

Manhattan Construction's area office, in Fairfax County, is one of the largest contractors in the region. The company, a subsidiary of Rooney Brothers, built the George Bush Presidential Library Center and helped construct The Ballpark in Arlington, Tex., home of the Texas Rangers.

"This is Marie Antoinette spending. It shocks the conscience to hear of this type of lavishness, particularly at a time when we are cutting programs for children, families and poor people."

-- D.C. Council member Jim Graham (D-Ward 1), reacting to expense reports showing that the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission spent at least $216,200 on restaurant meals, catered parties, out-of-town travel and other entertainment from February 1999 through August 2002. -- Page B1

Compiled from reports by staff writers Lori Montgomery, Petula Dvorak, Linda Perlstein, David A. Fahrenthold, S. Mitra Kalita and Spencer S. Hsu and the Associated Press..