district-of-columbia

Photos of the Week: Tax Bill and Sexual Harassment Allegations Dominate on the Hill
The week of Nov. 27 as captured by Roll Call's photographers

The Capitol dome is seen in a reflection on a television news camera outside the Capitol on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Word on the Hill: What’s Buzzing Around the Capitol
Franken gets skewered, Swalwell takes offense, and thanks but no thanks

David Barrows, dressed as a billionaire, protests in front of the Capitol as the Senate moved closer to a vote on its tax reform plan on Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

We’re all over Capitol Hill and its surrounding haunts looking for good stories. And some of the best ones are those that we come across while reporting the big ones.

There is life beyond legislating, and this is the place for those stories. We look for them, but we don’t find them all. We want to know what you see, too.

By the Numbers: Harassment Claims on Capitol Hill Peaked in 2011
2016 saw the lowest number of claims over the last 10 years

The U.S. Capitol as seen from the East Plaza. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

With two Democrats, Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota and Rep. John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, facing allegations of sexual misconduct in and outside the workplace, Hill watchers may be wondering just how many sexual harassment complaints get filed each year in the Capitol. 

The answer is less than clear because Congress’ Office of Compliance releases only topline numbers on the complaints filed with the agency each year. In the OOC annual report on the state of the congressional workplace, harassment is one line item, which could include sexual and other types of hostile workplace harassment. 

Proposal Restricting National Mall Access a ‘Game Changer’ for Hill Athletes
Senate and House softball league commissioners say they’re already squeezed for space

Congressional staffers practice their softball game on the National Mall in April 2009. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The National Park Service has pitched a curveball to congressional aides who use the National Mall for recreational sports.

The park service held meetings last week with leagues from across the city — including the House softball league — informing them that it planned to permanently close access on the Mall, from Third Street to 17th Street, to “organized sports.”

Congress’ Compliance Watchdog: Settlement Payouts Highest in 10 Years
OOC handles harassment, discrimination and other workplace complaints

.

BY ANDREW MENEZES AND SEAN MCMINN

U.S. taxpayers paid out more than $900,000 in the most recent fiscal year to settle claims on Capitol Hill, the highest amount in 10 years. 

Photos of the Week: Senate Grills Sessions and Adopts Budget
The week of Oct. 16 as captured by Roll Call's photographers

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., takes a selfie on Tuesday outside of Dirksen Building along Constitution Avenue NE. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Senate was the only congressional chamber in session this week as the House recessed for members to spend time in their districts. On the list of what the Senate tackled this week — a hearing with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the adoption of a budget resolution that's another step in the path toward a tax overhaul.

How Congress Deals With Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
The Office of Compliance has different rules from other federal agencies

Complaining about sexual harassment is less straightforward on Capitol Hill than in other federal offices. (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

In February, Roll Call reported that Congress had done very little to tighten its controls over workplace sexual harassment. In light of the allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, and a social media campaign by actress Alyssa Milano called #metoo to raise awareness of sexual harassment and sexual assault, here’s a look at the process for filing complaints if you work at a federal office or on Capitol Hill. 

Johnson to Press OPM on Congressional Health Care Benefits
Homeland Security chairman wants documents on how Obama-era ruling came to be

Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson is chairman of the committee that oversees the federal workforce. (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

Lawmakers and congressional staff might want to pay attention Wednesday morning when President Donald Trump’s nominees for the top two spots at the government’s personnel office face a Senate committee.

Most of the day’s attention will be on the Senate Judiciary hearing featuring Attorney General Jeff Sessions. But Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Chairman Ron Johnson is focused on the Office of Personnel Management, and the agency’s treatment of health insurance benefits for lawmakers and congressional aides.

Photos of the Week: House in While Senate's Out, Congressional Football and a Wharf
The week of Oct. 10 as captured by Roll Call's photographers

Rep. John Shimkus, R-Ill., holds up bunny ear fingers behind a a technician testing the microphones before the start of the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Thursday. (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

The House was the only chamber in session this week in Washington. The lawmakers headed out of town Thursday for their own recess. The Senate returns next week. 

The congressional football team played a game against Capitol police officers this week while D.C. leaders christened a new wharf in town. 

The Congressional Football Game, In Photos
Members of Congress and former NFL players played Capitol Police officers

Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, R-Tenn., and NFL star Herschel Walker watch along the sidelines during the Congressional Football Game at Gallaudet University in Washington on Wednesday. (Bill Clark/Roll Call)

The Capitol Police team, known as the Guards, bested the Mean Machine, a team of members of Congress and former NFL players in a Wednesday evening matchup in Northeast Washington. This is the fourth win in a row for the officers’ team in a game that occurs every other year on non-election years.

Here’s the night in photos: