- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 3, 2009


Schools veteran tapped for parks job

Mayor Adrian M. Fenty on Wednesday nominated a schools official to head the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation.

Jesus Aguirre was most recently the director of operations for D.C. Public Schools, overseeing staffing, facilities and finances. He also managed school security.

Mr. Aguirre graduated from the University of Texas at Austin and has an MBA from Arizona State University.

The mayor’s previous pick for the job, Ximena Hartsock, was rejected by the D.C. Council. Mr. Fenty named Ms. Hartsock after firing a previous director. Mr. Aguirre’s nomination still has to go to the council.

The parks department is responsible for 117 parks that total more than 900 acres and 68 recreation centers.



Ivey considers run for Congress

The chief prosecutor in Prince George’s County is considering a run for Congress.

State’s Attorney Glenn F. Ivey said Wednesday that he is forming an exploratory committee for a possible run against Rep. Donna Edwards in the Democratic primary next year.

Mr. Ivey has ruled out a run for a third term as state’s attorney.

“It’s up or out,” he said.

Mr. Ivey is a former Capitol Hill staffer and said it would be an exciting time to return to Washington, with the Democrats in control. He said his major focus would be on education and public safety.

Ms. Edwards was first elected last year. The district includes parts of Prince George’s and Montgomery counties.



Hunt wins primary to replace Cuccinelli

Northern Virginia Republicans nominated former at-large school board member Steve Hunt as their pick to replace Attorney General-elect Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II for the state Senate.

Mr. Hunt, 51, a retired naval officer who works as an analyst for defense contractor SAIC, received 955 of the 1,903 votes cast Tuesday night in the “firehouse primary.”

Voters braved chilly weather and a line that snaked outside of Centreville High School. The primary was scheduled to last from 6 to 10 p.m. At one point, lines of cars stretched over a mile from the high school. When the voters’ line was closed at 10 p.m., about 350 people still stood outside. They were allowed to vote.

Mr. Hunt will face Delegate David Marsden, a Democrat, in a special election on Jan. 12.


Former top cop loses again in court

Baltimore’s former police commissioner has lost another round in his five-year legal battle challenging his firing.

A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond on Wednesday upheld a lower court’s dismissal of Kevin Clark’s federal lawsuit. Mr. Clark also has unsuccessfully sought reinstatement in Maryland state courts.

Mr. Clark and two high-ranking deputies were fired in 2004 by then-Mayor Martin O’Malley. The officers said in their federal lawsuit that the mayor and other officials violated their constitutional rights by having police seize their badges and other equipment and escort them from the building.

The appeals court says the tactics were appropriate because they were employment actions, not law enforcement.


County lifts ban on courthouse displays

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has reversed an unpopular ban on public displays - including Christmas decorations - in front of the county courthouse.

A board-appointed citizens’ committee passed the ban last week. The committee said it was getting overwhelmed by requests for displays and wanted to protect the century-old courthouse from damage.

The decision provoked an outcry from residents who wanted to continue to display a Nativity scene there. On Tuesday, supervisors voted 7-1 to allow community groups “equal access” to the grounds.

Supervisors who voted down the ban said it was a First Amendment issue.

Jim Burton, the only supervisor who voted to keep the ban, complained that the board moved too hastily, without a full understanding of the legal issues.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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