Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
October 10, 2015

Posts in "AOC"

September 4, 2015

GAO Questions Capitol Power Plant Transition

The Capitol Power Plant heats and cools the Capitol complex. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A Government Accountability Office report released Thursday calls into question the ongoing project to transition the Capitol power plant from relying partially on coal to completely on natural gas.

The watchdog agency suggested the Architect of the Capitol did not follow leading capital-planning practices in the project, which result in an inefficient use of taxpayer dollars. AOC Stephen T. Ayers disagreed with the report’s claims, arguing that transitioning the power plant is the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly option. Full story

August 10, 2015

Material in House Chamber Tests Negative for Asbestos

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The material found in the House chamber that prompted its closing Monday has tested negative for asbestos.

“The [Architect of the Capitol] has completed the investigation of the material found behind the existing wall fabric in the House Chamber. All tests were negative,” House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul D. Irving said in notice sent late Monday afternoon. Full story

House Chamber Closed as AOC Investigates Unknown Material (Updated)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Testing material found in the chamber could take up to eight hours. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 12:35 p.m. | The House chamber was closed Monday morning after Architect of the Capitol workers discovered a potentially hazardous substance during ongoing restoration work.

Behind wall fabric, workers found an unknown material that is being tested for asbestos. The chamber was closed “in an abundance of caution,” House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul D. Irving said in a brief memo. Full story

July 30, 2015

Congressional Couches Test Positive for Toxic Retardant

Pallone said he was not surprised some couches tested positive. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Pallone said he was not surprised some congressional couches tested positive for toxic flame-retardant chemicals. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As Congress considers an overhaul of toxic chemical regulations, a new analysis has brought the issue close to home — perhaps a little too close for comfort.

The Environmental Defense Fund recently analyzed six couches from each of the congressional office buildings and found three contained a toxic flame-retardant chemical known as TDCPP. The chemical can be found on the California Environmental Protection Agency’s list of carcinogens. Full story

July 22, 2015

Capitol Food Workers Bring Income Inequality to Congress’ Front Step

A protester at Wednesday's rally. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Workers called for higher wages and a union. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

For the third time in the past eight months, food-service workers at the Capitol have gone on strike to push for higher wages and union representation, a rare example of a national issue — income inequality — hitting close to home for Congress.

Forty Capitol workers, the highest number so far, joined roughly 650 federal contract workers from across the District of Columbia Wednesday who went on strike and rallied in Upper Senate Park. Full story

June 22, 2015

AOC Details July 4th Concert Security Protocols

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As lawmakers rush to check items off their legislative to-do list before the Independence Day recess, Capitol administrators are busy preparing for the annual July 4th Concert on the West Lawn.

“A Capitol Fourth,” the live concert broadcast on PBS, is set for Saturday, July 4, at 8 p.m., and the Architect of the Capitol announced Monday that the concert will result in a familiar series of street closures. Full story

May 11, 2015

McCain Takes Swipe at Cannon Refurbishment

Architect of the Capitol Stephen T. Ayers discusses the Cannon House Office Building renewal project. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ayers discusses the Cannon project. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

As crews refurbish the Cannon House Office Building, Sen. John McCain says the project is wasting taxpayer money.

As part of his “America’s Most Wasted” series, the Arizona Republican listed the Cannon Renewal Project as one of 10 examples of unnecessary spending. The $752.7 million, 10-year project will revitalize the oldest congressional office building, but McCain said the price is concerning. Full story

May 6, 2015

Capitol Dome Workers Pause for ‘Safety Stand-Down’

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Construction workers who scale the Capitol Dome each day gathered Wednesday morning to learn about safety procedures and fall prevention.

Dozens of workers in their neon vests and hard hats listened to a number of technical experts and government officials as part of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s second annual National Safety Stand-Down, encouraging construction companies across the country to take a break from work and discuss fall prevention strategies. Full story

By Bridget Bowman Posted at 3:58 p.m.
AOC, Campus

March 25, 2015

Rotunda to Close for Six Weeks This Summer

Floor and art protection will once again be installed in July. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Floor and art protection will once again be installed in July. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Capitol Rotunda will close for six weeks this summer for scaffolding installation as part of the $60 million Dome restoration project.

According to a recent update on the Architect of the Capitol’s website, the Rotunda will be closed from July 25 through Labor Day on Sept. 7 so workers can install scaffolding to repair the Rotunda’s interior. Damage to the Dome has caused water to leak through the more than 1,000 cracks onto the Rotunda, damaging the interior. Full story

By Bridget Bowman Posted at 10:40 a.m.
AOC, Campus

March 20, 2015

What Will Happen to Schock’s ‘Downton Abbey’ Office?

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

What’s next for the Schock office? (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

When Rep. Aaron Schock leaves Congress on March 31, his “Downton Abbey” office will remain, though the days of the pheasant feathers and paintings could also be numbered.

Whoever wins the special election for Schock’s seat in Illinois’ 18th District will inherit the Republican’s Rayburn office, but the Architect of the Capitol could repaint the bright red walls depending on the new member’s request.

Full story

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