Mendo Minute

Phil speaking at the employers forum.

Phil speaking at the employers forum.

Up above is a photo of Phil at the “Hiring People with Criminal Records Makes Sense” employers forum at PNC Bank yesterday morning where he spoke about the District’s efforts to create incentives to hiring returning citizens.

Phil at the Mayoral-Council Joint Press Conference.

Phil at the Mayoral-Council joint press conference.

But wait, that’s not all!  That’s right, this is a Two-Times Thursday Edition of the Mendo Minute.  Later in the day, Phil held a joint press conference with the Mayor and Councilmember Wells regarding proposed emergency firearm legislation in the wake of the Palmer court ruling (finding that the District’s complete ban on carrying of handguns in public is unconstitutional).  Also at the press conference was Police Chief Lanier, Attorney General Nathan, and Deputy Mayor for Public Safety and Justice Paul Quander.

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Capitol Phil

Chairman Mendelson testifies before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs hearing on S.132, the New Columbia Admissions Act of 2013.

Chairman Mendelson testifies before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs hearing on S.132, the New Columbia Admissions Act of 2013.  Photo courtesy of Lateef Mangum

Happy Tuesday, Mendelson Post readers!  Monday marked the official end of the Council’s recess and while Council hearings are just now starting up again, Phil, along with Mayor Gray, Congresswoman Norton, and other District residents, took to Capitol Hill yesterday to present the case for DC statehood during a hearing for S.132, the New Columbia Admission Act of 2013.

The bill, introduced by Sen. Carper (D-DE), the Chairman of the Committee, would shrink the federal District of Columbia to an area encompassing the National Mall, federal legislative and executive buildings, the Supreme Court, and military bases, while the rest of the current District would become the 51st state the State of New Columbia.  The hearing by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs was the first hearing on DC statehood in over two decades.

Phil, Mayor Gray, Representative Norton, and statehood supporters pack the Dirksen Senate Office building to testify on behalf of DC Statehood.

Phil, Mayor Gray, Congresswoman Norton, and statehood supporters pack the Dirksen Senate Office building to testify on behalf of DC Statehood.  Photo courtesy of Lateef Mangum.

Phil spoke on behalf of the DC Council on the first panel along with Mayor Gray and Congresswoman Norton.  The three highlighted in their testimony the injustice of disenfranchisement for the nearly 650,000 residents of the District, whom are denied the right of representation in the national legislature, and the freedom from intrusion in their local affairs from legislative review to budget approval.  No other capital in the free world is denied such representation in their national legislature.

Phil, Mayor Gray, Congresswoman Norton, and supporters in the hearing room of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.

Phil, Mayor Gray, Congresswoman Norton, and supporters in the hearing room of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.  Photo courtesy of Lateef Mangum

Phil’s full testimony can be found on the Council  website.

Congresswoman Norton, Mayor Gray, and Phil at the S.132 hearing.

Congresswoman Norton, Mayor Gray, and Phil at the S.132 hearing.  Photo courtesy of Lateef Mangum.

To find out more information on the DC’s push for statehood, please visit the official website of the Council of the District of Columbia or visit DC Vote, the District’s leading advocacy organization working for District voting rights.

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Take Me Out to the Ball Game!

Phil and staff pose with Gregory McCarthy of the Washington Nationals Government Affairs before Tuesday's game.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott for the Washington Nationals Baseball Club)

Phil and staff pose with Gregory McCarthy, Vice President of Community Relations & Government Affairs for the Washington Nationals, before Tuesday’s game. (Photo by Patrick McDermott for the Washington Nationals Baseball Club)

Good afternoon, Mendelson Post readers!  We at the Mendelson Post all hope you are having a wonderful summer so far.  While this summer has been unseasonably cool, the District’s hometown baseball team the Washington Nationals have been red hot!  The Nats were in a pinch Tuesday night so they called up Phil to start at short and bat fourth, where he went 3-for-4 with two doubles and a homer…One can dream, right?

Actually, the Washington Nationals hosted Phil and a number of his constituents at the game Tuesday night against the Arizona Diamondbacks.  Phil was honored in a pregame ceremony where he was presented with the Nationals Spirit Award for his service to the District.

In the end, Phil’s bat wasn’t needed (this time!) as the Nats went on to win 8-1.

Were you at Tuesday’s game?  Grab any photos of the ceremony?  Share them below and they could end up on The Mendelson Post!

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Throwback Tuesday: Awards Galore

Phil poses with Chair Nancy MacWood and Beverley Wheeler as he accepts his Lifetime Achievement Award from The Committee of 100 on the Federal City.

Phil poses with Chair Nancy MacWood and Beverley Wheeler as he accepts his Lifetime Achievement Award from The Committee of 100 on the Federal City.

Happy Recess, Mendelson Post readers!  After a long and arduous first half to the year, the Council goes in to recess for the next two months.  To kick off recess, let’s have a  Tuesday Throwback to…last month!  June saw Phil receiving two awards for his years of public service; one from The Committee of 100 on the Federal City and one from the DC Bar.

Phil speaking at The Committee of 100 on the Federal City's awards ceremony.

Phil speaking at The Committee of 100 on the Federal City’s awards ceremony.

On June 4, Phil was honored to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from The Committee of 100 on the Federal City at the annual Vision Awards ceremony, recognizing his dedicated life as a public servant.  Starting from his days in the McLean Gardens Resident’s Association in 1975 to his near two decades of service as a commissioner of ANC 3C to his election as an at-large Councilmember in 1998 and his position as Chairman today, the Committee of 100 recognized Phil’s devotion to the District and his passion for public service.

Nearly two weeks later, Phil was again honored for his public service, this time by the DC Bar.  At their Awards Dinner & Annual Meeting, Phil, along with Council General Counsel (say that three times fast) V. David Zvenyach were awarded the Exceptional Service Award for their efforts to establish the Council’s Pro Bono Legal Volunteer Program, the first District government pro bono program.

Phil and V. David Zevnyach having their picture taken for the DC Bar, as we profiled back in May.

They’re ready for their closeup!  Phil and V. David Zevnyach having their picture taken for the DC Bar, as we profiled back in May.

The program has been a resounding success, with 17 District government attorneys from the Council and various District government agencies placed in pro bono work, volunteering their time and expertise to enhance access to justice.

In her oral remarks, former Bar President Andrea Ferster further emphasized Phil’s legislative support over the past ten years for DC Access to Justice, which helps low and moderate-income residents access the civil justice system.

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Quarterly ANC Meeting

The 4th of July has come and gone and we at the Mendelson Post hope you and your family had an enjoyable, wonderful, and safe celebration.  For this update, we’re going back in time to last Monday for another annual summer tradition: Phil’s Quarterly ANC Meeting!

MPD Chief Lanier discussing public safety with ANC commissioners.

MPD Chief Lanier discussing public safety with ANC commissioners.

We’ve written about Phil’s meetings before, but just to refresh your memory, these meetings are held every three to four months and are an opportunity for ANC commissioners to meet with their colleagues and ask questions regarding District government.  On Monday night, we were fortunate enough to be joined by both MPD‘s Chief Cathy Lanier and DMV‘s Director Lucinda Babers.

DMV Director Lucinda Babers discusses adjudication issues.

DMV Director Lucinda Babers discusses adjudication issues.

Chief Lanier started the meeting discussing recent crime trends and public safety issues in commissioners’ neighborhoods, along with tips regarding the July 4th holiday.  Director Babers spoke with the commissioners regarding traffic adjudication issues, an ever-popular topic among ANCs and their constituents.

As we close on another Quarterly ANC meeting, we turn our gazes forward to our next gathering of commissioners around Halloween.  Be sure to bring your costumes!

 

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