District Digest: Booze, poverty, and Real Housewives
This week’s Digest includes a potential increase in D.C. alcohol taxes, the new poverty rate, and a missing starlet.
Tough times call for tough measures; politicians in the District have been looking everywhere to cut corners and increase taxes. Under the 2012 D.C. Budget, Mayor Vincent Gray has proposed an increase in the tax on the sale of alcohol for off-premises consumption. The newly-imposed tax would increase the current 9% rate to 10%, and is estimated to bring in an additional $2.9 million for the District. Also, it is speculated that another $2.4 million will come in if liquor stores are allowed to sell until midnight and open at 8 a.m. on Sundays. Maryland’s increased tax on alcohol brought in an extra $6 million in July alone, and is expected to make $72 million in annual revenue.
Low times for the District
On Tuesday, the poverty rate of the U.S. reached its highest level in more than 20 years. At 15.1%, 46 million people in the U.S. are now classified as living at or below the poverty line. To make matters worse, the poverty rate in the District, at 19.9%, ranks third in the U.S., behind only Mississippi and Louisiana. The study also shows that the number of D.C. residents without healthcare coverage rose dramatically over the past year.
On Wednesday, September 14, celebrity gossip website TMZ spoke with Tareq Salahi about the possible kidnapping of his wife, Real Housewife of D.C. and former White House crasher Michaele Salahi. The last time he had seen her was around 11 a.m. on Tuesday in their home. Michaele told Tareq she was going to have her hair done, but never attended her appointment. It wasn’t until later that night that he received a phone call from an unfamiliar Oregon cell phone number—it was Michaele, who said she was visiting her mother’s house. Tareq grew suspicious and called her mother, who stated she had not been aware of Michaele’s plans, which prompted Tareq to contact the authorities. The Warren County Sheriff’s Department stated that Michaele had already contacted them saying she was having “family issues.” However, Michaele was found yesterday in the arms of the Neal Schon, the lead guitarist for the band Journey. No fear! Michaele is back safe and sound.
A Chipotle-owned restaurant, ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen, will be opening in Dupont within a matter of days. According to the company, the menu will include flavors from Vietnam, Malaysia, and Thailand. In lieu of a potential terrorist attack, the Metropolitan Police Department was well on their guard this past Saturday as they arrested 522 people for crimes of poverty.
Photo from Wikimedia Commons.