The D.C. City Council yesterday adopted a redistricting plan that shifts Georgetown, one of the wealthiest and most politically active neighborhoods in Washington, into Ward 2 in the inner-city, and approved a controversial pay raise for city police officers.
The redistricting plan, passed by voice vote, retained in Ward 3 a sliver of Georgetown where veteran Democratic council member Polly Shackleton lives. But the rest of the historic neighborhood, whose busy citizen activists have played an influential role in the politics of Ward 3, west of Rock Creek Park, was taken out of the ward.
At the same time that it removes an integral neighborhood from Ward 3, the shift of Georgetown, a largely white neighborhood, also reinforces the voting strength of affluent whites in Ward 2, a sprawling political mix generally made up of poorer blacks and middle-class whites in transitional neighborhoods, including Shaw, Foggy Bottom, Dupont Circle and new Southwest.
The plan, first proposed in October by Council Chairman Arrington Dixon as the simplest way to correct population differences noted in the 1980 Census, passed yesterday with little debate after Shackleton said Georgetown activists "did not care" which ward they were in and abstained from the voting.
"I regret very much that most of Ward 3 will be moved," Shackleton said, calling Georgetown "the linchpin of Ward 3."
However, Donald Shannon, president of the Citizens Association of Georgetown, charged yesterday that Shackleton did not work hard enough either to keep Georgetown in Ward 3 or to stop it from being split. He said his group would file suit against the plan because it divides the Georgetown community "in what was obviously an individual accommodation" for Shackleton.
The council has to have a redistricting plan in place for next year's mayoral and council elections. The plan must be accepted by Mayor Marion Barry, who was out of town yesterday and not available for comment.
The council unanimously passed the police pay raise, which provides increases of 20 to 22 percent over three years.
But several council members were critical of Barry for agreeing to renegotiate the contract this fall after a less costly agreement had been signed in July. The new contract, which will permit annual pay increases rather than yearly bonuses called for in the first pact, will cost $36.48 million -- nearly $12.3 million more than the previous contract, city budget aides announced Monday.
Council members John Ray (D-At large), John A. Wilson (D-Ward 2) and Jerry A. Moore Jr. (R-At large) said that the police contract and other labor agreements may force the city to raise taxes for the 1983 fiscal year.
But Wilson, an announced candidate for mayor, praised Barry for deciding "that the public safety is more important than dickering over what taxes will be increased" and said the agreement was "a good one."
Council member Betty Ann Kane (D-At-large), who also has said she is running for mayor, chided Barry for reopening the contract without knowing where the revenue was coming from to pay for it.
Ray, still another candidate for mayor, said the issue wasn't the renegotiation of the contract, but whether the city -- the mayor in particular -- could identify funds to finance the pay raises.
Dixon, who earlier had called Barry's renegotiation "an expensive political stunt," voted for the raise yesterday, saying "the police union has operated in good faith."
The pay raise for approximately 3,300 officers includes a 7 percent increase retroactive to Dec. 1, a 6 percent raise next year and 7-to-9 percent increase in 1984.
In other action, the council enacted a measure to increase motor vehicle inspection fees from $3 to $5, and voted to prohibit city hotels from granting exclusive use of taxi stands at the hotels to one taxicab company.
The council delayed for a week taking final action on a plan to bring the city's Aid to Families with Dependent Children welfare program into compliance with new, more restrictive federal guidelines. Barry and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services had warned that the proposal had serious technical flaws.