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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.

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

Barry rails against pension changes

Flanked by more than a dozen D.C. firefighters in red T-shirts, council member Marion Barry on Monday voiced his opposition to legislation that would place tighter fiscal controls on the District's pension obligations to police, firefighters and teachers. Published May 23, 2011

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown

Brown’s D.C. budget markup eliminates many tax hikes

With the D.C.'s spending plan now in his hands, D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown is steadfast on what will happen to Mayor Vincent C. Gray's proposal to raise the income tax on wealthier households. No way, no how. Published May 21, 2011

Medical examiner loses key approval

The D.C. medical examiner's office is "at a loss" to explain why a professional association declined to renew the office's accreditation, while questions remain about the potential impact on law enforcement initiatives and perceptions in the courtroom, city officials said. Published May 19, 2011

Gray appoints two to administration posts

D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray on Wednesday announced his picks to lead the D.C. Department of Transportation and the medical team within the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services. Published May 18, 2011

D.C. school exam scores voided

The District has invalidated 2010 standardized test scores from three D.C. public school classrooms, citing clear evidence of violations or a "strong suspicion" of them, the city's Office of the State Superintendent of Education said Wednesday. Published May 18, 2011

Needy go to D.C. city hall to protest cuts

Stephen Hopkins-Bey says he has a pretty clear picture of what will happen if District lawmakers follow through on proposed cuts in their upcoming budget that would likely close the homeless shelter in which he lives. Published May 18, 2011

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown

Brown introduces expanded ethics rules

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown introduced legislation Tuesday that would broadly expand disclosure requirements and other ethics rules for city employees and elected officials. Published May 17, 2011

Jack Evans, Ward 2 Democrat

D.C. Council clashes on Gray’s tax increases

The D.C. Council should scrap seven of the 13 tax and fee initiatives proposed in Mayor Vincent C. Gray's spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year, a council member with oversight of D.C. finances said Monday. Published May 16, 2011