Local News from WAMU 88.5

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Virginia Wants To Talk To Maryland About A New Potomac River Bridge — Again

Virginia's influential Commonwealth Transportation Board wants to open discussions with officials in D.C. and Maryland about improving congested Potomac River crossings. A new bridge west of I-495 would be part of the conversation.

For Maryland's Purple Line, The Bids Are In — But There Might Not Be A Winner

Maryland transportation officials are closer to making decisions that ultimately will determine whether the suburban light-rail line is built. Four teams have submitted their final financial bids, and the state's review is expected to last five to six weeks.

Noncitizens Voting In School Board Elections? Maryland County Could See It

Immigrants who are not U.S. citizens would be allowed to vote for school board in Montgomery County under a proposal that needs statewide approval — and has some critics asking if it would be too complicated to implement.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

LISTEN: Kojo Nnamdi And Chuck Thies On The Closed Investigation Of Former D.C. Mayor Gray

Federal prosecutors have ended their corruption investigation of former D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray after nearly five years. Gray's former campaign manager, Chuck Thies, speaks with WAMU's Kojo Nnamdi about the end of the probe and its toll on his re-election campaign.

Marijuana Advocates Push Back Against D.C. Effort to Ban Pot Use In Bars & Clubs

D.C. officials want to permanently prohibit private clubs from letting patrons use marijuana on their premises, but pot advocates say the proposed law is unnecessary and discriminatory.

NPR Music's 50 Favorite Albums Of 2015

2015 was a year in which the fractures in the music industry's bedrock became everyday geography. It was also one in which sales records were not just broken but demolished. Despite all that, it was still just as easy to find great albums and just as hard to narrow them down to 50.

D.C. Prosecutor Ends Lengthy Corruption Probe Of Former Mayor Vincent Gray

An investigation by the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia into illegal financing of Vincent Gray's 2010 mayoral campaign has ended without charges against the former mayor.

NPR's Best Books of 2015

What would you like to read? NPR offers their guide to 2015's best books.

Challenge To Maryland's 2011 Redistricting Is Revived By U.S. Supreme Court

The court said federal law requires that the Maryland case be heard by a panel of three judges, not the lone judge who dismissed the challenge. Writing in an eight-page opinion for the court, Justice Antonin Scalia said the law "could not be clearer."

Three Months Late, D.C.'s Plan To End Traffic Fatalities Is Coming Next Week

How can D.C. wipe out traffic deaths? Proposals heard Tuesday suggested tougher enforcement of distracted driving and strict requirements for drivers with a history of drunk driving.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

In Final Plea, D.C. Council Members Ask Regulators To Reject Pepco-Exelon Deal

In a strongly worded letter to the Public Service Commission, four D.C. council members argue that even though the deal might have short-term benefits, it could be detrimental for the city down the road.

Safety Advocates Still Waiting On D.C. Mayor's Plan To End Traffic Fatalities

Mayor Muriel Bowser promised to embrace the goals of Vision Zero when on the campaign train last year, but Tuesday will be the first time a plan officially comes before the D.C. Council.

P.G. Or Prince George's? Kevin Durant's Sneakers Expose Generational Divide

Should "P.G. County" be considered offensive? Sneakers from Seat Pleasant, Maryland, native Kevin Durant exposed a generational divide, as explored Monday on The Kojo Nnamdi Show.

Homeland Security Secretary Delivers President's Message To Virginia Mosque

In a Sunday address, President Obama called for the Muslim community to be watchful of their own in the wake of the San Bernardino shootings. On Monday Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson brought that message to Northern Virginia.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Montgomery County Lawmakers Consider Breaking Into Student-Loan Business

In an effort to attract more young college grads to the county, lawmakers in Maryland's Montgomery County are looking to set up a student-loan refinancing authority.