Evans says giving up contracting powers would help the Council address ‘pay-to-play’ concerns. (Mark Gail/The Washington Post)

City legislators are back on the dais this week, and among the new D.C. Council’s business is a bill designed to address a great governmental irony. Jack Evans (D-Ward 2), making good on interview comments last week, says he’ll introduce a bill to end the council’s review of large city contracts. That’s a practice instituted in the early 1990s as a good-government measure, but one that’s been used repeatedly to politicize the procurement process — most infamously, during the award of the city’s lottery contract four years ago. Jonetta Rose Barras likes the idea: “On far too many other occasions, the process has become politicized,” she writes. But Council Chairman Phil Mendelson has his doubts, he tells the Examiner: “We have the leverage to get information and to bring issues to light and to ensure that contracts comply with District law.”

In other news:

Unions are getting nervous about Michael Brown’s reelection chances; also, Marion Barry deems him “not that popular, but he is not unpopular either” (D.C. Wire)

Brown speaks, sort of: “If you are here to talk about jobs and housing I’m glad to talk about it. Anything else, I’m not interested in talking about.” (WTTG-TV)

Police have their doubts about reports of a six-year-old cell phone thief (Post)

Goodbye to the Men’s Fashion Center and decades of history on H Street NE (Post)

Panda cub: “one of the best of things that can happen to Washington right now” (Post)

Tech-investor tax break is worth it to diversify city economy, Vincent Gray argues (D.C. Wire, Loose Lips, WBJ, WaTimes, Examiner, DCFPI)

Federal sequestration would cut $55 million in D.C. government aid (WaTimes)

Homeless residents give Jim Graham and Michael Brown a hard time (WAMU-FM)

How federal Medicaid expansion is helping Unity Health serve ex-offenders (NPR)

For food trucks, a daily turf war (Post)

Long-running Georgetown street project is officially complete (Georgetowner, DDOT)

Council vote will infuse $3 million into parking meter upgrades (Examiner)

Metro now allows folding bikes during rush hour — because Harriet Tregoning complained? (AP, Examiner)

Evans wants a librarian, art teacher and music teacher at every DCPS school — but how to pay for it? (D.C. Schools Insider)

”Waitlist shuffle” takes toll on charter school’s enrollment (D.C. Schools Insider)

Yup, Metro cell service expansion won’t be done till 2015 (Examiner)

Airports Authority board member’s travel costs weren’t out of line, union lawyer argues (Post letter)

After shooting, “barricade situation” at Congress Heights apartment building (WaTimes, WUSA-TV)

GWU student runs against his friend, the ANC rep (Examiner)

Big-box-type retailers wouldn’t be so bad for D.C. — minus the big boxes (GGW)

Alleged anti-gay hate attack after H Street festival (WRC-TV)

Still costs a hell of a lot to live in Georgetown (Capital Business)

Artur Davis to appear at D.C. GOP event (Examiner)

Remains found under Georgetown house judged historic, not forensic (Patch)

In defense of Courtland: “there is no joy in always driving at a rate of speed chosen for the lowest common denominator” (Post letter)