“The way CDCs played fast and loose with public funds, all under the eyes of the mayor and city lawmakers, is sickening. Albert R. “Butch” Hopkins Jr., chief executive of the Anacostia Economic Development Corp. in Southeast Washington, invested $25,000 from one of his group’s for-profit subsidiaries to buy — take a guess — raw gold in Mali. The gold was later lost in transit. A for-profit subsidiary of the same CDC leased a Mercedes-Benz for Mr. Hopkins — and before that two Jaguars as well. Lease payments for Mr. Hopkins and for two other employees in a recent three-year period: $56,225. The generous Mr. Hopkins also shelled out, through the CDC’s for- profit subsidiaries, political campaign contributions, including donations to Prince George’s County Executive Wayne Curry and the National Republican Senatorial Committee. Over the past decade, the Anacostia Economic Development Corp. has received more than $23 million in public and private funds. Some $4.7 million of government money has been used to manage 14 redevelopment projects, only five of which have succeeded. Five are still incomplete and four have been dropped by the city. This year, Mr. Hopkins’s CDC anticipates a shortfall of $260,000. Why is Mr. Hopkins still on the job?”
“$100 Million Down the Drain” The Washington Post, 28 Feb 2002: A.22.