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Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr. covers politics and the White House for The Washington Times. He can be reached at

Articles by Tom Howell Jr.

**FILE** D.C. Council member Mary Cheh (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Judge: Brooks' son won't have to testify

A D.C. Superior Court judge's decision to allow a potential witness to invoke his Fifth Amendment rights has effectively ended the hearings into Mayor Vincent C. Gray's personnel practices, according to a D.C. Council memo. Published June 13, 2011

Kwame R. Brown

More dealing likely before bonds tax added to D.C. budget

A move to tax D.C. residents' income on interest from out-of-state bonds has emerged as a key battleground in the debate over revenues ahead of a final vote scheduled for Tuesday on the city's $10 billion fiscal 2012 budget. Published June 13, 2011

City's attorney general takes a stand

In the course of five days last week, the District's mayor was called a "crook" at a public hearing, the council chairman's campaign committee was accused of widespread reporting violations, one council member disclosed he had been offered bribes, and another council member was accused of using his charity as a slush fund. Published June 12, 2011

Flanked by his attorney, Frederick D. Cooke Jr., D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. (right) refuted the city attorney general's allegations regarding the use of grant money and charitable donations at an afternoon news conference. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Thomas steps down from council committee chairman post

Citing his "highest regard" for the District's legislative body, council member Harry Thomas Jr. says he will step aside as chairman of a key committee as he fights a lawsuit accusing him of siphoning public funds for personal use. Published June 8, 2011

The city government has accused D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. of using grant money and donations for trips and expenditures. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Announcement on Thomas expected this afternoon

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown is expected to announce this afternoon whether fellow member Harry Thomas Jr. faces sanctions, voluntarily or otherwise, after a lawsuit filed this week accused him of siphoning off public funds for personal use. Published June 8, 2011

D.C. Council approves boundary changes

The D.C. Council on Wednesday approved a draft plan that repositions the boundaries of the city's eight political wards after making concessions to Ward 6 residents who protested the division of its eastern neighborhoods on Capitol Hill. Published June 7, 2011

Decision pending on Thomas sanctions

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown said an announcement will be made Wednesday on whether Harry Thomas Jr. faces sanctions from his colleagues in light of a lawsuit that accuses him of funneling money for youth baseball programs to his own pocket. Published June 7, 2011

The city government has accused D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. of using grant money and donations for trips and expenditures. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

D.C. sues council member Thomas; federal case filed

The District government Monday filed a $1 million civil lawsuit against D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr., accusing the Ward 5 Democrat of using grant money and charitable donations for personal golfing trips, hotel stays and a new sport utility vehicle. Published June 6, 2011

Sulaimon Brown arrives on June 6, 2011, to testify before a D.C. Council committee at the Wilson Building in Washington about allegations that he was paid off by Mayor Vincent C. Gray, then promised a government job. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

Ex-D.C. mayoral candidate Brown testifies of alleged Gray deal

The D.C. politician whose allegations wreaked havoc on the Gray administration before it ever got rolling, strode into city hall on Monday to finally give his on-the-record account about purported campaign payoffs and other electoral irregularities. Published June 6, 2011

D.C. juvenile facility chief's selection raises questions

A council member with oversight of the District's juvenile justice agency says the hiring of a U.S. Coast Guard officer to lead the city's troubled two-year-old secure placement facility for D.C. youth may not pass "the smell test." Published June 2, 2011

Neil Stanley

DYRS nominee faces rocky confirmation hearing

A D.C. Council committee's confirmation hearing on Mayor Vincent C. Gray's pick to lead the District's troubled juvenile justice agency began Wednesday with one member declaring that he would not support the nominee. Published June 1, 2011

D.C. court orders Sulaimon Brown to testify

A D.C. Superior Court judge on Tuesday ordered reluctant witness Sulaimon Brown to testify next week before a D.C. Council committee exploring Mayor Vincent C. Gray's hiring practices. Published May 31, 2011

D.C. medical marijuana program draws eclectic mix of applicants

With names such as "District of Cannabis" and "Jahrock," hopeful entrepreneurs eager to grow or sell medical marijuana in the District of Columbia are touting their business acumen, green thumbs, or desire to aid the ill and dying in applications submitted to the city. Published May 31, 2011

Document outlines attrition of D.C. police

An internal Metropolitan Police Department document shows that 20 officers left the force in a recent four-week period, a statistic that speaks to recent debate about the rate of police attrition in the District and how to keep staffing at safe levels. Published May 30, 2011

D.C. Council committee advances redistricting map

A D.C. Council subcommittee on Thursday approved a draft plan that redistricts the city's eight wards and notably shifts part of the Capitol Hill neighborhood into Ward 7. Published May 26, 2011

D.C. Council approves $10.8B budget without income tax increase

The D.C. Council on Wednesday unanimously approved a $10.8 billion budget plan, rejecting Mayor Vincent C. Gray's proposal to raise income taxes on the wealthy but reviving a once-unpopular proposal to tax out-of-state bonds. Published May 25, 2011

D.C. budget proposal up for first vote

The D.C. Council on Wednesday will deliver a vote on the budget for the upcoming fiscal year, placing its stamp on a plan that has hinged on taxes, cuts and political wrangling to close a $322 million budget gap. Published May 24, 2011

City State: Cheh memo outlines committee 'priorities'

D.C. Council member Mary M. Cheh's lightened the tone of what's been a fairly contentious budget process with the release late Tuesday of a memo outlining her committee "priorities" in advance of an initial vote Tuesday on the city spending plan. Published May 24, 2011