(Wall Street Journal) — Taxpayers in the District of Columbia, which faces a budget shortfall of $400 million, have paid to lease two deluxe Lincoln Navigators for the head of the City Council at a cost of about $3800 a month. After getting elected chairman of the D.C. City Council in November, Kwame Brown asked for a black Lincoln Navigator L, with a DVD player for the back seat, a power moonroof, polished aluminum wheels and an all-black interior.
When the Public Works Department delivered a black Navigator with a gray interior, Mr. Brown’s office told the city to send it back. “He was just very clear he wanted black on black,” said Brown spokeswoman Traci Hughes. “It doesn’t show as much dirt and wear and tear.” Public Works’ employees found a second Navigator in Coldwater, Mich. But Mr. Brown was disappointed to learn on delivery that the SUV had a tan-and-black interior. He decided to keep the car anyway and return the first one to the city.