ABC7 WEATHER: Sunny with highs near 70. http://wj.la/72e8x6
NEWSTALK: Among today’s guests (10 a.m., NewsChannel 8) is Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), who will be asked about the sequester, Syria, immigration and more.
‘GOOD MORNING WASHINGTON’: Among the stories -- The latest on a plan to end FAA furloughs; Boston bombings fallout; much more, beginning at 4:30 a.m.
TOUGH TALK: And for now, that’s all it is, per the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Democrat Terry McAuliffe said Thursday that if he is elected governor, he will sign an executive order imposing a ban on gifts worth more than $100 to Virginia’s governor and first family. Also Thursday, Gov. Bob McDonnell, on a trade trip in Japan, said there’s a lot he’d like to say about developments in the legal case involving his former chef, but he referred questions to prosecutors.
“McAuliffe’s call comes as Democrats continue to press the issue of conflicts surrounding McDonnell and Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli’s relationship with Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams.” http://bit.ly/15UGr0C
LONELY TRANSIT CENTER: The problems continue, per the Washington Post, “Metro has told Montgomery County it will not operate the Silver Spring Transit Center as planned because construction and design flaws plaguing the $120 million facility have made it too expensive to maintain. Under the terms of a 2008 agreement, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority is supposed to take control of the three-level bus-and-train hub from the county after completion. Metro would operate the center, which is adjacent to its Silver Spring station, as a part of its regional system.
“The opening of the center is more than two years behind schedule because of concerns about the strength of the concrete and the adequacy of steel supports in some areas. WMATA has said several times that it would not accept the facility unless it was satisfied with the repairs, which are expected to get underway this summer.” http://wapo.st/10EQTZt
BOSTON MARATHON BOMBINGS: Of a kidnapping, per the Boston Globe, “In an exclusive interview with the Globe on Thursday, Danny -- the victim of the Tsarnaev brothers’ much-discussed but previously little-understood carjacking -- filled in some of the last missing pieces in the timeline between the murder of MIT police officer Sean Collier, just before 10:30 p.m. on April 18, and the Watertown shootout that ended just before 1 a.m. Danny asked that he be identified only by his American nickname.
“The story of that night unfolds like a Tarantino movie, bursts of harrowing action laced with dark humor and dialogue absurd for its ordinariness, reminders of just how young the men in the car were. Girls, credit limits for students, the marvels of the Mercedes ML 350 and the iPhone 5, whether anyone still listens to CDs -- all were discussed by the two 26-year-olds and the 19-year-old driving around on a Thursday night.” http://bo.st/13ywqCm
MEANWHILE: Mum’s the word, per the Los Angeles Times, “Federal agents had to end what they termed "an urgent public safety interview" with Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev when a judge came to his hospital room, officials said Thursday, a disclosure that has renewed the debate over how the government should handle terrorism suspects. Tsarnaev has not answered any questions since he was given a lawyer and told he has the right to remain silent by Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler on Monday, officials said.” http://lat.ms/15L3kUi
RAIN TAX: On second thought, per the Baltimore Sun, “Anne Arundel County Executive Laura A. Neuman on Thursday vetoed that county’s version of the so-called rain tax — making it the first jurisdiction to take action against the controversial state-mandated stormwater management fee. Under legislation approved last year, Anne Arundel, eight other counties and Baltimore City have until July 1 to approve a fee on property owners to pay for stormwater projects aimed at curbing pollution in the Chesapeake Bay.” http://bsun.md/11nRgT6
SITUATION SYRIA: A line may have been crossed, per the New York Times, “The White House said Thursday that it believes the Syrian government has used chemical weapons in its civil war, an assessment that could test President Obama’s repeated warnings that such an attack could precipitate American intervention in Syria. The White House, in a letter to Congressional leaders, said the nation’s intelligence agencies assessed “with varying degrees of confidence” that the government of President Bashar al-Assad had used the chemical agent sarin on a small scale.” http://nyti.ms/10CRxqh
FOR SALE: And. . .sold, per the Gazette.Net, “The hot housing market in Montgomery and Frederick counties continued in March, with Montgomery posting a year-over-year jump in existing home sales for the eleventh month in the past year. Frederick has seen increases in eight of the past 12 months, according to figures from the Maryland Association of Realtors. The median sales price reached $242,500 last month, a 7 percent increase from a year ago.” http://bit.ly/15UMBh6
POLITICO PLAY: "Sen. Rand Paul spent 13 hours on the Senate floor staking out a very public position as the most anti-drone member of Congress. But a month later, a backlash from fans and critics alike is brewing over comments he made on Fox Business News that seemed to fly in the face of the very cause he was championing." http://politi.co/15UWD1L
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LIVING BUILDING: Sounds spooky, per ABC7 – WJLA, “Prince George's County is taking "going green" to the extreme. County leaders broke ground Thursday on one of the world's only "living buildings" - the most energy efficient possible. Those behind it say $15 million is a small price to pay for improving our environment and helping the next generation do the same.” http://wj.la/YXwxUH
AIRPORT HEADACHES: But pain relief is on the way, per the Washington Examiner, “The Senate late Thursday approved legislation that would ease the thousands of airport delays and cancellations inflicted by the so-called sequestration. The bill, approved by unanimous consent, gives Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood "flexibility to transfer certain funds to prevent reduced operations and staffing of the Federal Aviation Administration." http://bit.ly/12MjrOq
D.C. GRAFFITI: Tag this, per the Washington Times, “Everybody knows springtime in the District means blossoms and baseball. But it also means an increasingly busy schedule for the city’s graffiti-removal crews, which have seen a quadrupling of cleanup orders since 2010. While most residents are hunkering down in their homes during the cold winter months, an invisible legion — respected by some as artists and decried by others as vandals — takes to back alleys, rooftops and bridges armed with spray-paint cans, leaving a trail of signatures, symbols and scribbles across the city to be scrubbed when warm weather arrives.” http://bit.ly/YYaFIF
DOOBIE BROTHERS: Well, kind of, per DCist, “District residents who suffer from cancer, glaucoma, or AIDS are now mere weeks away from being able to relieve their pain with medical marijuana. Capital City Care, one of the three clinics set to open across D.C., was formally licensed to distribute medical pot this week and doctors can soon start recommending their patients to receive treatment.” http://bit.ly/15RBPs8
SPORTS, BRIEFLY: Nationals beat Cincinnati 8-1; Caps lose 2-1 against Ottawa.
JUST THE FACTS: per ARLnow, “Between 2008 and 2012, the number of autistic children enrolled in Arlington Public Schools’ special education program increased by more than 50 percent — a trend that matches a national increase in autism diagnoses. There were 276 autistic special education students in 2008. By 2012, enrollment had increased to 421, a 52.5 percent jump.” http://bit.ly/14T7s5j