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Luke Rosiak

Luke Rosiak was a reporter for The Washington Times.

Articles by Luke Rosiak

** FILE ** D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times/File)

Pass-through vendors skirt D.C. contract laws; government a lucrative client

Efforts by Washington, D.C., to include local, minority-owned and small businesses in city contracts have led to a system in which goods manufactured by major companies, including sensitive medical equipment, are routed regularly through residences where self-professed entrepreneurs — whose only client is the government — mark up and resell them. Published April 9, 2013

Pepco President Joseph Rigby talks to reporters on Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2011 in Annapolis, Md., after testifying before frustrated lawmakers about long delays in restoring power after a winter storm last month. Rigby said he wont be accepting about $900,000 in bonuses this year because of the performance. (AP Photo/Brian Witte) Caption Box

Pepco CEO made $11.4 million in 2012 despite utility’s spotty record

Pepco has been faulted repeatedly for dismal reliability and the electric company's hundreds of thousands of customers have little choice but to go with the monopoly, yet its chief executive's compensation package rose from $6.7 million in 2011 to $11.4 million last year, financial documents filed last week show. Published April 4, 2013

(Courtesy of SBA.gov)

Local business contract takes the long route; government allows pass-through costs

When the U.S. Forest Service sought to do some minor work replacing the siding on buildings at the San Jacinto Ranger District in Riverside County, Calif., it limited bids to HUBZone contractors — "small businesses in urban and rural communities" or "Historically Underutilized Business Zones." Published April 3, 2013

Ignorance of D.C.’s copyrighted laws can be costly

Ignorance of the law is no excuse, but those who want to ensure they're in compliance with the District's laws must obtain them from a private company owned by a foreign conglomerate. Published March 31, 2013

AWOL on Hill: Fundraising trumps voting

Voting on bills and resolutions is a member of Congress' most basic duty, but only 10 of its current 535 lawmakers represented their constituents on every vote last session. Published February 19, 2013

** FILE ** Job seekers stand in line during U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler's "Getting Southwest Washington Back to Work Job Fair" on Sept. 28, 2011, in Vancouver, Wash. (Associated Press)

Freshmen reformers in Congress avoid Hill experience in staffing

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler is a 34-year-old Washington state Republican beginning her second term in Congress. The youngest female representative in Congress, she won't be old enough to run for president until November. But the people she relies on to carry out the day-to-day work of legislating make her look like an old hand. Published February 14, 2013

Obama crony wins contract to give phones to jobless

A cellphone company whose top executive has close ties to President Obama lobbied for and won a piece of a major new government push to provide Internet service to low-income job-seekers, even though critics say the company's smartphones are poorly suited to the task of helping those in the program find work. Published February 5, 2013

** FILE ** Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel (center) is flanked by Chicago Public Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard (left) and school board President David Vitale during a news conference on Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

SEIU local eyes Midwest organizing push

One of the largest private-sector union locals, which represents janitors and service employees in the Midwest, this year will try aggressively to unionize the region's security officers and workers at airports and universities, according to an internal document obtained by The Washington Times. Published February 3, 2013

** FILE ** Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney shakes hands during a campaign stop on Saturday, March 17, 2012, in Bayamon, Puerto Rico. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Troubles run deep for key labor union in D.C.

The Laborers' International Union has in its legislative affairs office a lobbyist who pleaded guilty in a fraud case despite a federal law banning convicts from overseeing unions' finances. Published January 27, 2013

**FILE** Former Florida Rep. Allen West. (Associated Press)

Ex-Rep. West uses campaign funds for self-named foundation

Allen West was always a prodigious fundraiser, drawing money from far outside his Florida district. Now, he's transferred a half-million dollars in donated campaign funds to two charity groups: the Allen West Foundation and another entity sharing the new foundation's post office box address. Published January 24, 2013

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, Texas Democrat (Associated Press)

Who are the best and worst bosses on Capitol Hill?

The Washington Times analyzed a decade of congressional pay records to find the offices with the highest turnover rates and found 27 members who — over a period of four or more years — lost an annual average of at least one-third of their staff who sought calmer pastures or were fired. Published January 22, 2013

Members of the Chicago Teachers Union distribute strike signage at the union’s strike headquarters on Sunday, Sept. 9, 2012, in Chicago. The union vowed to strike on Monday if there was still no agreement over teachers’ contracts with Chicago Public Schools by then. The uncertainty of whether there would be classes has left parents fuming. (Associated Press)

Most union workers now on government payrolls

Unions were formed to bring representation to companies that otherwise were accountable to no one but their profit-making owners. But most union workers today work for government, not companies, even though there are five times as many private-sector employees overall, according to recently collected data. Published January 15, 2013

Union bosses’ salaries put ‘big’ in Big Labor

There can be riches in standing up for the working class: The Boilermakers union president earned $506,000, plus hundreds of thousands of dollars more for travel expenses, while the Laborers union president made $441,000. The Transportation Communications Union leader made $300,000, bumped up to $750,000 with business expenses. Published January 10, 2013

**FILE** People wait in line to enter the Northern Brooklyn Food Stamp and DeKalb Job Center in New York on Feb. 24, 2012. (Associated Press)

Non-cash welfare reforms resulted in fewer recipients

Welfare is still a mammoth program, but increasingly comes in the form of services and support, not cash — and many poor people are less interested in applying than they were when it was dollars on the line, rather than access to education, day care and transportation, a Government Accountability Office report said this week. Published January 9, 2013