Frederick Douglass (file photo)

The most recent bill approved by the Senate panel this week would allow Washington D.C. to build a statue of Frederick Douglass in the halls of the Capitol. The building of the statue of Douglass would be a big move for the city. Under the bill the statue would be placed in Statuary Hall. The Washington Post has the story:

The D.C. spending bill approved by a Senate panel this week would help the District government stay open in the event of a federal shutdown and would allow the city to place a statue of abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass in the halls of the Capitol, advancing a pair of key priorities for local leaders.

The Senate Appropriations Committee voted Thursday to approve the annual measure, which would give the District $676 million in federal payments for fiscal 2013 to cover the costs of the D.C. court system, a private school voucher program, security for special events and handful of other items. Unlike the Republican-authored House version of the bill, the measure in the Democratic-controlled Senate would not prohibit the city from using its own funds to pay for abortions for low-income women.

Under the bill, if there is no federal appropriations measure in force approving the District budget — as would be the case during a federal government shutdown — then the city would be permitted to spend its local funds. That would be a welcome change for city leaders, who watched worriedly as the government nearly shut down last year.

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