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(WTOP)   DC's mayor wants you to know that, sure, he's given his son and daughter thousands of dollars worth of Verizon Center Sky Suite tickets to see acts like Jay-Z, Kanye West, and Britney Spears, but that was all totally to help the city   (wtop.com) divider line 50
    More: Unlikely, Verizon Center, Britney Spears, Kanye West, Jay Z, Metropolitan Police Department, Cirque du Soleil, Prince George's, Nationals Park  
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3308 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 May 2012 at 1:02 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-05-11 09:39:01 AM
Most corrupt DC mayor since.....well the last one probably. They've all been pretty corrupt. None can ever live up to Mayor for Life Marion Barry though.... who is still on the city council.
 
2012-05-11 09:43:56 AM
But he didn't funnel federal funds into his personal charity foundation to buy a 60K SUV. Now, the money orders...
 
2012-05-11 09:54:08 AM
I see no problem with this. If they were entertaining influential people kids I would call it a good use.
 
2012-05-11 09:54:53 AM
At least Marion had the decency to pay his own way. With coke money. But hey, any port in a storm, right?
 
2012-05-11 11:18:27 AM
I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.
 
2012-05-11 11:45:14 AM

Walker: Most corrupt DC mayor since.....well the last one probably. They've all been pretty corrupt. None can ever live up to Mayor for Life Marion Barry though.... who is still on the city council.


Really? You want to compare Fenty and Williams to Clown shoes?
 
2012-05-11 01:07:29 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?
 
2012-05-11 01:08:17 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


Really. Show me one Mayor of a city with a major arena that doesn't have this type of set up.
 
2012-05-11 01:09:25 PM

2wolves: Walker: Most corrupt DC mayor since.....well the last one probably. They've all been pretty corrupt. None can ever live up to Mayor for Life Marion Barry though.... who is still on the city council.

Really? You want to compare Fenty and Williams to Clown shoes?


Yeah I never had a problem with Fenty. But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason. Everytime I saw him he seemed to be in a neighborhood telling people to clean up after themselves so there wouldnt be as big of a rodent problem.
 
2012-05-11 01:09:26 PM
It's pretty great that in this economy there is still enough extra revenue taken in by the DC government that they can afford a skybox. It puts money back into the economy, and that's what keeps people employed in the long run.

Yes, even letting his kids use it isn't the worst thing in the world. Those kids are going to be buying drinks and food, and someone's got to be hired to clean up the skybox afterwards. When so many Americans are struggling, this kind of benevolent governance is exactly the kind of thing we need.
 
2012-05-11 01:09:27 PM
I actually see no problem with ANY of this. Stadiums have this type of deal in a lot of cities. Secondly, if you are mayor, I don't see a problem with using a perk or two for the kids and grandkids.
What I took from this is that skybox wouldn't have been used in any official capacity so he let his kids use them. Big farking deal.
 
2012-05-11 01:10:52 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


Does the city buy tickets to the skybox, or does it get it for free because of some agreement with the landlord? If it's the former, I think the real controversy is why the city is paying for it in the first place. If the latter, I don't see how it's hurting taxpayers.
 
2012-05-11 01:10:58 PM
biatch set me up...
 
2012-05-11 01:12:02 PM

Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?


They are useful for hosting dignitaries, but let's be serious. Dignitaries aren't going to be very interested in going to a Jay-Z concert (except for Obama, perhaps). The kids use the box when they otherwise aren't in use, putting to work half a dozen people whose job it is to keep the place stocked and cleaned.
 
2012-05-11 01:12:14 PM

groppet: 2wolves: Walker: Most corrupt DC mayor since.....well the last one probably. They've all been pretty corrupt. None can ever live up to Mayor for Life Marion Barry though.... who is still on the city council.

Really? You want to compare Fenty and Williams to Clown shoes?

Yeah I never had a problem with Fenty. But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason. Everytime I saw him he seemed to be in a neighborhood telling people to clean up after themselves so there wouldnt be as big of a rodent problem.


Fenty was pretty much done in by the Nats tickets "scandal". He ticked a lot of people off when he refused to talk about it to local media.

Doesn't take much to kill a political career these days...
 
2012-05-11 01:12:49 PM

Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?


Then the problem would be the tickets were given away tor friends/employees on occasions when they could have been used to benefit the district. My company has permanent club seats at Philips Arena and Turner Field. When we don't have any customers in town to entertain (benefit the company), the tickets are given away to managers or sometimes employees in raffles who frequently give them to friends. Meh.
 
2012-05-11 01:13:19 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


That the city should own the skybox is absurd, but the reason for owning the skybox is that it's supposed to help "city business" (whatever the fark that means).

Hard to explain how hoarding city owned tickets for your own family "helps city business."

Bu hey, it's DC. Only slightly less corrupt than Detroit!
 
2012-05-11 01:16:10 PM
Did he give his kids tickets to see any decent acts?
 
2012-05-11 01:18:05 PM
Why the fark are the constituents paying for the elected officials to have their own skybox in the first place? I'd be more outraged about that.
 
2012-05-11 01:23:33 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


I don't get it either, its like people suddenly woke up and are pissed because elected officials are getting perks.
 
2012-05-11 01:24:27 PM
His kids sure do have shiat taste is what I take away from this. You'd have to pay me attend any of those events.
 
2012-05-11 01:24:28 PM

Lsherm:

Hard to explain how hoarding city owned tickets for your own family "helps city business."


It's not really if you're in business. It's salesmanship. If you want a company to open an office in your city then you have to wine and dine them. I regularly blow $50 on lunch for each indivudual of a customer (that's each guy so if there's 4 of them I pay $250 including me). Sometimes I end up taking 10 guys. Last Xmas we took about 40 people from our second largest customer to Morton's. It greases the wheels.

Regardless, he's not "hoarding them for his own family":
According to records maintained by the Executive Office of the Mayor the vast majority of the tickets controlled by the mayor go to constituents.

And lulz: Gray's former Chief of Staff received all 24 sky suite tickets for the Lady Gaga show to entertain the mayor's staff. NTTAWWT.

Is there an election coming up? This controversy sounds ridiculously manufactured. Keep in mind, I never heard of DC's mayor until today so I have no dog in this fight.
 
2012-05-11 01:27:29 PM
I wonder what Marvel's Mayor has to say about this ...
 
2012-05-11 01:32:05 PM
I don't have a problem with the city having a skybox, in theory anyway. Plenty of companies have them; it's a good and perfectly legitimate tool for entertaining business leaders and government officials with whom you are trying to do business. Cities are no different from for-profit companies in this regard. That being said, I'm also not opposed to a periodic IG audit of the skybox's usage to see if it is actually being used for its stated purpose at a level more-or-less comparable to that of a typical company's skybox. I don't know whether the city actually paid money for the skybox directly, or if it was a condition of the construction permits, but either way is not inherently corrupt, despite providing an additional potential avenue for corruption.

If it was already paid for and would just be going to waste, then I'm not too shook about its use by the mayor's kids. I should think that a lottery or raffle deal among city workers might be a better use of it, as an essentially free perk that the city can use to boost employee morale, but that's a management issue, not a ethical or political issue, and thus really not my concern. Now, on the other hand, were the kids using food service that the city was paying for and which would have otherwise not been charged? Then, yes, I have a problem with that. As DC's problems go, though, even that is pretty damn small potatoes.
 
2012-05-11 01:32:28 PM

ongbok: Rapmaster2000:
Really. Show me one Mayor of a city with a major arena that doesn't have this type of set up.


Apples and oranges.

But, the mayor of Salt Lake City is, surprisingly, a very liberal Democrat. (Latino immigrants & College Ghetto inhabitants voted him in.)

The arena that the Utah Jazz play in is owned by the family of a very Republican car dealer who died a couple of years ago. The family isn't as obviously Republican.

But they probably aren't handing out free tickets to the mayor.

The land that the arena is on was a "brownfield" and was subsidized. But the Republican owner paid for the arena himself.
 
2012-05-11 01:37:20 PM

Arkanaut: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Does the city buy tickets to the skybox, or does it get it for free because of some agreement with the landlord? If it's the former, I think the real controversy is why the city is paying for it in the first place. If the latter, I don't see how it's hurting taxpayers.


Generally you rent a skybox per season, you then get 20 or so tickets (how ever many seats are in the skybox) for every single event or game included with that. So the city spends the same amount if 20 people show up or zero.
 
2012-05-11 01:37:39 PM

groppet: But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason.


Because he:

a.) Actually improved the city
b.) Didn't cater to NE/SE enough
c.) Wasn't black enough.

I was stunned and saddened when they voted him out for a crook like Gray
 
2012-05-11 01:39:22 PM

MindStalker: Generally you rent a skybox per season, you then get 20 or so tickets (how ever many seats are in the skybox) for every single event or game included with that. So the city spends the same amount if 20 people show up or zero.


Note, there are skyboxes rentable by the game, but I'm pretty sure the city one a long term contract or possibly free as it is the hosting city.
 
2012-05-11 01:40:08 PM
But does he smoke crack?
 
2012-05-11 01:40:36 PM
Awesome. Nothing holds a candle to the Stephen's family and the nepotism in the unfriendly Chicago suburb of Rosemont.
 
2012-05-11 01:47:02 PM
D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray's adult children have been given thousands of dollars' worth of highly sought after sky suite tickets to numerous sold out concerts and events at Verizon Center since Gray took office last year.


Yo, they are reparations fo' mah peeps suffering; And remember Trayvon!
 
2012-05-11 01:47:48 PM

HopScotchNSoda: ... As DC's problems go, though, even that is pretty damn small potatoes.


Newsletter?
 
2012-05-11 01:51:47 PM

Rapmaster2000: Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?

Then the problem would be the tickets were given away tor friends/employees on occasions when they could have been used to benefit the district. My company has permanent club seats at Philips Arena and Turner Field. When we don't have any customers in town to entertain (benefit the company), the tickets are given away to managers or sometimes employees in raffles who frequently give them to friends. Meh.


I'm assuming your company is a private and the principals have decided that the suite should be used as you describe. I don't gather that this newspaper article is stating that Gray should be cited or arrested for giving these tickets to his children, rather they are not being used for their intended purpose, which, in turn, calls into question why DC has a suite in the first place.
 
2012-05-11 01:55:55 PM

Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.


I work for a venue management company and like most venues ours are owned by the city and a subcontractor manages them. Part of the stipulation in these types of contracts is the city usually gets their own box/suite/etc for use by the councilmen and women and whomever they want to give the tickets to. Our mayor gets 2 tickets to the arena and 4 tickets to the stadium, and two tickets two the theatre, along with any other council person. I think he would rather let his kids use those tickets rather than just let them go to waste.

As for his excuse, that they are ambassadors to the city, it's kind of a flimsy reason to give. Just tell it like it is, mayor. You are by no means the first mayor to pass on his tickets to someone else.
 
2012-05-11 01:56:34 PM

2wolves: Walker: Most corrupt DC mayor since.....well the last one probably. They've all been pretty corrupt. None can ever live up to Mayor for Life Marion Barry though.... who is still on the city council.

Really? You want to compare Fenty and Williams to Clown shoes?


Yeah, Fenty and Williams seemed fine. I am surprise at how quickly the corruption started oozing out of every pore after Grey was sworn in.

I believe that the city has one box at Nationals Park and the Mayor and the District Council were fighting over who gets them. They asked the Nats to decided and the team said "Screw that! We'll leave them at Will Call. You two decide who gets them."
 
2012-05-11 01:57:02 PM

Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?

Then the problem would be the tickets were given away tor friends/employees on occasions when they could have been used to benefit the district. My company has permanent club seats at Philips Arena and Turner Field. When we don't have any customers in town to entertain (benefit the company), the tickets are given away to managers or sometimes employees in raffles who frequently give them to friends. Meh.

I'm assuming your company is a private and the principals have decided that the suite should be used as you describe. I don't gather that this newspaper article is stating that Gray should be cited or arrested for giving these tickets to his children, rather they are not being used for their intended purpose, which, in turn, calls into question why DC has a suite in the first place.



Becasue the city helped foot the bill for the construction.
 
2012-05-11 01:58:10 PM

Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: Moopy Mac: Rapmaster2000: I don't get it. The city owns tickets to one skybox. The mayor chooses who to give those tickets to. Can someone show me the problem? If it's with the idea that the city has a skybox, that's one thing, but to say he's bad for using a resource allocated to him by the city doesn't work for me.

Note: "in this economy" and "when so many Americans are struggling" are not acceptable answers.

Ostensibly, because the SkyBox isn't meant to be a personal perk for the mayor, rather a tool to benefit the District?

Then the problem would be the tickets were given away tor friends/employees on occasions when they could have been used to benefit the district. My company has permanent club seats at Philips Arena and Turner Field. When we don't have any customers in town to entertain (benefit the company), the tickets are given away to managers or sometimes employees in raffles who frequently give them to friends. Meh.

I'm assuming your company is a private and the principals have decided that the suite should be used as you describe. I don't gather that this newspaper article is stating that Gray should be cited or arrested for giving these tickets to his children, rather they are not being used for their intended purpose, which, in turn, calls into question why DC has a suite in the first place.


This is a false dichotomy. The tickets are being used for their intended purpose, just not every time they are used. It's not an all or nothing proposition.

Your question would be "were the tickets used for an unintended purpose when they could have been used for their intended purpose?" If you can prove that this is true, then you win and I concede that there is a problem.
 
2012-05-11 01:59:22 PM

LandOfChocolate: groppet: But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason.

Because he:

a.) Actually improved the city
b.) Didn't cater to NE/SE enough
c.) Wasn't black enough.

I was stunned and saddened when they voted him out for a crook like Gray


Sometimes it seems like people in DC want it to go back to the New Jack City murder capital days
 
2012-05-11 01:59:56 PM
And let me reiterate because I noticed a lot of comments that asked about the city buying sky boxes. The city OWNS the building and looks over/amends the contracts. They get these as free use, but often times have to pay for any extras (food, drinks, etc). 95% of the time they will pay for these extra perks out of pocket. The other 5% of the time is when dignitaries or business people are being hosted by the city officials and it can be construed as work related expenses. (however, this is rare because there are oversight committees who poor over every last expense report).
 
2012-05-11 02:03:03 PM

Rapmaster2000: Is there an election coming up? This controversy sounds ridiculously manufactured. Keep in mind, I never heard of DC's mayor until today so I have no dog in this fight.


No, Gray has been corrupt since he took office. People are focusing on the rest of the DC government because one of the council members just got sentenced to a few years in jail because he didn't think anyone would notice if he stole $350,000 from the city. What's funny is that no one in the city government noticed, a Republican rival had to out him during a campaign.

Vincent Gray, controller of the questionable skybox tickets, is also under federal investigation and it's resulting in all of his friends having their offices raided by the FBI.

He should have been raffling the tickets off to either city employees or, even better, maybe a citizen or two. Since he says he was "giving" them to his family, I have no doubt that means his daughter auctioned them off on eBay to total strangers and they used the money for cocaine. That's how the Gray family operates.
 
2012-05-11 02:04:37 PM

Lsherm: Since he says he was "giving" them to his family, I have no doubt that means his daughter auctioned them off on eBay to total strangers and they used the money for cocaine. That's how the Gray family operates.


This Gray family sounds pretty cool.
 
2012-05-11 02:04:53 PM

groppet: LandOfChocolate: groppet: But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason.

Because he:

a.) Actually improved the city
b.) Didn't cater to NE/SE enough
c.) Wasn't black enough.

I was stunned and saddened when they voted him out for a crook like Gray

Sometimes it seems like people in DC want it to go back to the New Jack City murder capital days


There are two big blocs of votes in DC, one wants to turn the city in to urbantopia, the other wants city government to provide gravy jobs. They can't both win, and each have about half the vote. Barry and Gray represent the latter bloc, Williams and Fenty represent the former.
 
2012-05-11 02:08:00 PM

nelsonal: groppet: LandOfChocolate: groppet: But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason.

Because he:

a.) Actually improved the city
b.) Didn't cater to NE/SE enough
c.) Wasn't black enough.

I was stunned and saddened when they voted him out for a crook like Gray

Sometimes it seems like people in DC want it to go back to the New Jack City murder capital days

There are two big blocs of votes in DC, one wants to turn the city in to urbantopia, the other wants city government to provide gravy jobs. They can't both win, and each have about half the vote. Barry and Gray represent the latter bloc, Williams and Fenty represent the former.


www.diamonddusted.com
What Sharon Pratt Kelly wanted
 
2012-05-11 02:19:48 PM

groppet: Yeah I never had a problem with Fenty. But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason. Everytime I saw him he seemed to be in a neighborhood telling people to clean up after themselves so there wouldnt be as big of a rodent problem.


Fenty was the first honest mayor DC's had since I can remember, he at least tried to fix the shiatholes that are DC's public schools, and make sure that city services actually worked. Proof that no good deed in politics goes unpunished.

/I live in Arlington for a reason...
 
2012-05-11 03:20:31 PM

DssDevl: I actually see no problem with ANY of this. Stadiums have this type of deal in a lot of cities. Secondly, if you are mayor, I don't see a problem with using a perk or two for the kids and grandkids.
What I took from this is that skybox wouldn't have been used in any official capacity so he let his kids use them. Big farking deal.


Fenty lost beacuse the folks in Ward 3 and war 6 were tired of having a condescending white-boy yuppie telling them how to live and act all the time.

/Yes I AM aware of that

//Nonetheless that is a true statement
 
2012-05-11 03:59:43 PM
I don't know, maybe because he a Democrat and feels entitled.
 
2012-05-11 04:22:42 PM

MasterThief: groppet: Yeah I never had a problem with Fenty. But everyone in DC seemed to hate him for some reason. Everytime I saw him he seemed to be in a neighborhood telling people to clean up after themselves so there wouldnt be as big of a rodent problem.

Fenty was the first honest mayor DC's had since I can remember, he at least tried to fix the shiatholes that are DC's public schools, and make sure that city services actually worked. Proof that no good deed in politics goes unpunished.

/I live in Arlington for a reason...


Yeah its why I lived in Silver Spring and Germantown close enough to have fun there far enough to avoid the problems
 
2012-05-11 07:19:50 PM

PeterPipersPickledPecker: What Sharon Pratt Kelly wanted


There was a world class whackjob.
 
2012-05-12 02:02:21 PM
Is Gray white or black?
 
2012-05-12 04:22:58 PM

furiousidiot: Is Gray white or black?


He's Gray.
 
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