DC Residents had Better see Through the New Vision Zero Bill

by: Brent Smith at the Common Constitutionalist

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The goal of the omnibus Vision Zero bill, from council member Charles Allen of Ward 6, is to decrease the number of traffic accidents with pedestrians and cyclists,” writes the Washington Examiner.

At first blush, it may appear to be a “traffic safety bill,” but reading further, the additional proposals make obvious what this really is. The “Vision Zero bill” is a government command and control / Green New Deal style bill, disguised as a traffic safety bill.

The main takeaway of the bill, that many conservative chronicles gleaned, is that neighbors will be allowed to effectively write their own parking tickets – turning otherwise harmless busy-bodies into traffic cops.

Now, knowing that the police can’t be everywhere, the aforementioned D.C. council member Charles Allen of Ward 6 proposes that, “certain residents,” be given the authority, “to write out parking tickets to their neighbors.” read more

When Liberal Ideology Crashes into Reality

from IBD:

Fight Against $15: Democrats Push To Repeal Minimum Wage Hike In Nation’s Capital

“Fight for $15” is the rallying cry for most Democrats these days. But soon after Washington, D.C., voters approved a hike in tipped wages to $15, Democrats on the city council moved to repeal it. That’s what happens when ideology crashes into reality.

On Tuesday, 7 of the 13 members of Washington’s city council sponsored a bill to jettison the wage hike for tipped workers that 56% of D.C. voters had approved by a ballot initiative less than a month before. read more

It Pays to Stay in School

by:  & the Common Constitutionalist

There’s no reason for kids in Washington, D.C., to cut grass or wash cars this summer. The public school system is paying kids $5.25 an hour to attend summer school. The students being paid are those with poor grades.

Through the “Summer Bridge” program, about 300 students are receiving payment. The program is targeting ninth-graders who are “less likely than their peers to graduate high school within four years,” reported The Washington Examiner.

This isn’t the first time the school system has paid students; but in times past, students with good grades got the money. A Harvard University group paid middle school students between 2008 and 2010 for making good grades. But this time around, students with poor grades are raking in the cash.

“How much will we pay going forward, and who will we pay, and what’s the cutoff to get paid?” asked political consultant Chuck Thies. “It’s critical that we get at-risk students and underperforming students and failing students into the program, but I don’t think incentivizing them with money sends the right message.”

The minimum wage in Washington DC is $8.25. Bets on how long it will take the ACLU to file suit.

A Glimpse into Obamacare

So Obamacare is going to save us money and undoubtably run like a swiss watch. Most government programs do.

Just picture the following on a national scale and be afraid. Be very afraid.

Also, keep in mind that this department was created in 2009, just 3 years ago.

By Snejana Farberov:

In Washington DC, being dead is no reason not to take full advantage of one’s health care benefits.

A new audit by the Office of the Inspector General has revealed that the municipality spent nearly $700,000 on Medicaid coverage for the deceased.

In total, there were 129 cases involving payments for services rendered that were made after a patient had died.

In one case, a payment was made nearly nine years after the patient’s passing.

According to the audit, the city’s Department of Health Care Finance shelled out nearly $4 million in erroneous payments in 2009, most of which went toward claims with an invalid or nonexistent Social Security number.

Officials are also investigating allegations that the department might have overpaid its billings by $22.6 million.

Some of the overpayments have been blamed on changes in insurance rates between the time of billing and the time of payment.

While the department, which was created in 2009, has corrected many of the clerical errors that caused these costly gaffes, the findings of the audit are likely to result in calls for increased scrutiny of its operations at an upcoming oversight hearing.

“We will dig into why this happened, what has been done to correct it, and how to prevent similar overpayments from happening in the future”, said at-large DC Councilman David Catania, who chairs the Council’s Committee on Health.

In response to the audit, a spokesperson for the agency told the Washington Examiner that in December 2010, the department put into place a new system capable of discontinuing payments after a patient’s death. What a great idea!

The department’s troubles do not stop there, however. The audit has found that the agency paid $22.6 million extra on Medicaid claims totaling $124 million. In one case, the department nearly made a payment of $5.6 million for a $100 claim.

According to the spokesperson, it was a case of ‘fat fingers’ that nearly caused the multimillion-dollar error when a clerk held down the ‘5’ key long enough to create a $5.6 million entry.

Officials are now going over all 78,361 claims that might include an error.

In its first year of operation, the Department of Health Care Finance paid about $1 billion.