The Washington Times - August 2, 2011, 12:50PM

The Virginia Democratic primary race between Arlington County board member Barbara Favola and Jaime Areizaga-Soto to replace retiring Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple for state Senate has quickly descended into a nasty back-and-forth, David Sherfinski reports in The Washington Times. The pair has set up “truth” websites that have traded charges of ethical lapses. Some Democrats are grumbling that the fight is drawing resources and negative attention to a primary, even as Republicans mount a strong effort to win the two seats needed to claim a Senate majority.

Peaceoholics cofounder Jauhar Abraham is planning a run for Marion Barry’s Ward 8 D.C. Council seat, Washington City Paper’s Loose Lips reports. “Abraham says he’s not deterred by Barry’s wild popularity in Ward 8, saying there are plenty of previously untapped, younger voters who can sway the election his way,” the story says. The other co-founder of the anti-youth-violence group, Ron Moten, has announced plans to challenge Ward 7 D.C. Council member Yvette M. Alexander.

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More than half of Metropolitan Police Department officials working in the excepted service are in violation of city residency requirements, according to the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), Jeffrey Anderson reports in The Washington Times. The police department has more than 200 of the often high-ranking officials who serve at the pleasure of the chief. The larger issue could be that those excepted service employees — assistant chiefs, commanders and inspectors — have been classified as excepted service for the purpose of administering discipline, boxing the department in if it does not require them to abide by the residency rule that comes with the excepted service. MPD denies there’s a residency problem.

Department of Public Works trash inspectors are aggressively writing tickets to D.C. residents who mix their recycling with their trash, the D.C. Examiner reports. Jack Evans says Ward 2 residents have complained mightily about the tickets. One citation obtained by the newspaper “clearly shows an image of a single aluminum can surrounded by a mess of garbage.” The paper says D.C. law allows for up to 30 percent of trash to be mixed with recyclable materials.

An immigrant advocacy group filed a lawsuit Monday seeking to uphold a recently enacted Maryland law that would allow some illegal immigrants to receive tuition breaks, David Hill reports in The Washington Times. Casa de Maryland filed suit in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court against the State Board of Elections, alleging elections officials erroneously validated thousands of signatures that helped send the state’s Dream Act to a November 2012 referendum. Opponents netted nearly 109,000 valid voter signatures for a petition effort that required 55,736 signatures. About a third were collected through use of a website.

For the second time this year, D.C. officials drew up memos, planned inter-agency briefings and put vacation plans on ice while power brokers on Capitol Hill worked through a stalemate with major implications for the District. And, once more, their plans were all for naught as the partisan leaders brokered a last-minute deal,. Tom Howell Jr. reports in The Washington Times. “It costs many, many hours of staff time at all levels that could have been better used doing the city’s business,” said David Umansky, spokesman for D.C. Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi.