"Give yourself a report card," Mayor Marion Barry was asked after 100 days in office. "What would you give yourself?"
"A-plus," Barry responded, confidently. "Oh,yes. People will, too."
A broad cross section of people were interviewed by The Washington Post and asked to grade the mayor. Here is what some of those people said:
"E for effort for substance, zero," said Everett Scott, president of the D.C. Federation of Civic Associations, a coalition of 60 neighborhood organizations.
Many of Barry's initiatives are left over from the Washington administration, and so far city services have not improved, Scott said. "In January, I sent Marion Barry two letters . . . and I haven't had a response yet," he added.
"A," said Oliver T. Carr, president of the Metropolitan Washington Board of Trade. Barry, he said, is changing governmental attitudes, making good appointments and trying to cut red tape in city hall.
"B," said the Rev. James E. McCoy, pastor of St. Paul Baptist Church and president of the 200-member Baptisters Conference of Washington, D.C., and Vicinity.
"He's not as outspoken on [legalized] gambling and the other [moral] issues as he was before. He's trying to do something about housing . . . I see it coming, but it isn't here yet."
"C-plus or a B," said Dick Wolf, president of the Capitol Hill Restoration Society, one of the largest neighborhood groups in that area of the city.
Barry has moved too slowly to change city policy in the areas of land use, zoning and comprehensive planning, Wolf said. "In some respects, they may be doing better than the old admininstration. But not up to the expectations of those of us who wanted to see some change."
"B-minus," said Kimi Gray a resident of Kenilworth Courts public housing project and chairman of the College Here We Come program for youth in that project in Far Northeast Washington. Barry has improved food stamp services for public housing tenants, and employes at the northeast area service center of the Department of Human Resources are more courteous, she said.
"B-plus or an A. There's room for improvement," said Robert E. Petersen, president of the Greater Washington Central Labor Council, the largest group of unions in the area.
Barry listens and seems to be sincere about helping low and middle income people in the city, Petersen said. But sometimes the mayor is so busy it is difficult to see him. "Overall, labor was pleased," Petersen added, with the way Barry handled last month's 23-day school strike.
"A for commitment, C for results," said Lavell Mcrritt, president of the Washington Construction Industry Task Force, a group advocating more jobs for minorities in the construction industry. Barry seems interested in implementing a long-stalled plan to increase the number of minorities in construction industry jobs, Merritt said.
"He's certainly said the right things," Merritt said. "We've been willing to wait."
Ivanhoe Donaldson, Barry's alterego and general assistant, said, "Interms of tone, energy, effort, commitment and dedication, I think the administration gets an A-plus. In terms of delivery of services and the ablity to get things done, overall, the government would get a B-minus."
"B-minus?" a surprised Barry asked, when told of Donaldson's score.
"He's just like any other teacher,"Barry said. "Different teachers give different grades."