Lobbyist's Nomination To DC Water Board Raises Questions | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

Lobbyist's Nomination To DC Water Board Raises Questions

Play associated audio

The nomination of a top lobbyist to the city's water and sewer authority board of directors has been put on hold after questions were raised about possible conflicts of interest. 

Any way you measure it — the number of clients, the compensation, or the sheer council influence — few Wilson Building lobbyists rival Rod Woodson of the law firm Holland and Knight. But Woodson's prolific lobbying record appears to be hindering, at least temporarily, his appointment to the board of directors of DC Water.

The holdup seems based on Woodson's work with two clients. One of them is Skanska, a Swedish construction company that was awarded an $83 million contract to build a tunnel for the DC Water and Sewer Authority. Woodson says he lobbied for the company for just one day and it is not a regular client.

The second item in question is Woodson's lobbying for a group that represents area builders and contractors. In particular, labor unions say they're concerned about Woodson's work opposing the city's First Source law, which mandates companies with city contracts hire a certain number of district residents. 

Woodson argues the disagreement over First Source shouldn't derail his nomination.

"We have a policy difference with regard to First Source, but that does not mean I have been opposed to the objectives of workforce development and bringing District residents into the workforce," Woodson says. 

Woodson's nomination will face a vote by the D.C. Council next month.

NPR

Former Basketball Player Scores As A Filmmaker

While Deon Taylor was playing professional basketball in Germany, he had an epiphany: he wanted to make movies. The self-taught director's latest film, Supremacy, was released this Friday.
NPR

Surströmming Revisited: Eating Sweden's Famously Stinky Fish

Sweden has the distinction of producing surströmming, one of the foulest-smelling foods in the world. More than a decade ago, NPR's Ari Shapiro tried eating it and failed. It's time for a rematch.
NPR

What Romney's Retreat Means For GOP Hopefuls

NPR's Scott Simon speaks with senior Washington editor Ron Elving about the narrowing Republican presidential field for 2016 and what we've seen so far in the first month of the new Congress.
NPR

The Infinite Whiteness Of Public Radio Voices

The hashtag #publicradiovoices, about the "whiteness" of public radio, trended on Twitter this week. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Gene Demby of NPR's Code Switch team about the conversation.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.