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FINANCIAL AND OTHER -- 1999

JANUARY, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
107ViseControl Bd to Admit DC Elected Leaders Williams and Council Chair Cropp to Weekly Meetings
110MeltonIn States of Surplus, Lawmakers Have Plans to Spare--VA, $900M: MD, $250M: tax cuts? schools? etc.
114ViseDC's '98 Budget Surplus Grows by $100M to $400M--may eliminate all $332 debt--better economy, tourism
116EditorBig Surplus for Big Problems--City and Control Bd miffed by Brimmer expose'--but $ won't fix problems
117DearbornDC and the Feds--Favors Tax Rev Comm recomdtn for $408M Fed 'payment in lieu of (property) taxes'
129LiptonDC Tax Office Is Losing Big to Cheaters--at least $100M/yr lost due to weak processing system, fraud
130ViseVendors Try to Pry Millions Owed from DC--payment backlog blamed on computers--and operators
FEBRUARY, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
202Hsu/ViseRegion's Share of FY00 Budget Includes Millions in New Projects--DC for students, 1st homebuyers, etc.
203Vise$450M FY98 DC Surplus Exceeds Forecasts--$332M deficit wiped out, Congress may reward mayor
209ViseRecord $445M DC Surplus Called Proof of Recovery: 15K new taxpayers 'had not bothered to file' in past!
209Vise (cont)DC Budget surplus contains +$275M in income tax rev; -$175M underspent; +/- adjustments net -$5M
218ShearFairfax County's $1.95B '00 budget, includes 3.6% raise for 10,800 workers (pop'n over 950,000)
220EditorTax Those Packs in Maryland--time for lawmakers to keep promise to raise cigarette tax--up to $1.50
MARCH, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
304WilliamsSchwartz Proposes $87M in Income, Sales, and BusinessTax Cuts--4 other councilmembers sign on
308PyattMore from the Hotelier without a Moving Argument--Marriott won't consider DC site--VA arguments thin
308Behr/EvansA Suite Deal at Steep Cost--MD offers generous incentives for Marriott (and others), but is it selling its soul?
309Pae/ShieldsRising Home Values Mirror Demand for Close-in Addresses--DC sales +33%, value +3% in DC, Arlington
312EvansMarriott Workers Relieved They'll Being Staying in MD--didn't want to uproot lives in Montgomery Cnty
312BehrMD's 'Must' (Marriott) Deal Comes with Risks--other major employers to want incentives too
312WilsonMarriott Takes Deal to Stay in MD--total 20-year 'incentive' (bribe?) worth $49M to $74M
316WilsonMontgomery's Duncan Offers $35M Prop/Phone Tax-cut Plan--$2.6B budget w/schools:$1.1B; police $118M
317ViseDC Lost $22.3M in '98 Fed Grants--$17.1M spent outside grant limits, 'only' $5.2M unspent--improvement!
318WilliamsFor Williams, a Friendly Reception--Council vows to look at budget proposal w/open mind--except UDC
318EditorThe Grants That Got Away--DC gotta master elemental functions of getting, tracking, and spending grants
320EditorSharing Montgomery's Wealth--economic boom assures good outcomes--tax revenues up 45% since '92
322LiptonMore DC Appraisal Problems--assessment errors delay 3000 notices in Georgetown, elsewhere
325WilliamsWilliams' Debt Plan Challenged by Schwartz, Ambrose--restructuring to fund small-business tax cut
331SpinnerCurry Budget Boosts Pr. George's Public Safety Funds 11%--educators disappointed by 3.7% increase
APRIL, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
317Dennis(Gaz)Montgomery's Duncan ups budget $161M to $2.42B--education 50.6%, safety 10.2%, debt service 6.5%
414ViseWall Street Analysts Smile on DC--reaction to Briefing by DC officials may bode well for bond ratings
415EditorDC Tax Cutting--strong support for Schwartz, Evans/Catania bills--should DC spend hard-won surpluses?
415SpinnerMontgomery Cnty Emerges Big ($107M) Winner in new Md budget--PG's Curry displeased w/only $51M
415ViseCouncil Majority Backs DC Tax Cuts--3-yr, $419M cuts move towards regional comparability,Hill supports
415Vise(cont)Evans/Catania Bill backed by 7 others--max bus & pers income tax to 6.5% frm9.5%; sales 5%v5.75%;
415BehrPulling Even in Refund Race--DC now on par w/Md, Va: checks out within 2 wks--139K returns (40%tot)
419PyattDC Considers Tax-Cut Proposals (income, sales, licenses) , But Revenues Needed (only up 3.6%)
423ViseWall Street Rewards DC with Better than Junk Bond Rating--Std and Poor "BBB" is investment grade
425EditorFrom Junk to Investment Grade (bonds)--worth celebrating, Cntl Bd, Jarvis, and CFO can take credit
426ViseCouncil's DC Tax Cut Plan Called Too Risky --deputy CFO Gandhi finds Council estimates way off
427WilliamsCouncil Members Dispute DC Official's Critique of Tax-Cut Plan, claim doomsaying politically motivated
427EditorWise Counsel on DC Tax Cuts: Evan/Catania should should consider risks of too-soon deep tax cut
428Vise/WilliamsMayor-Council Budget Rift Widens--disputes on tax cuts, initiatives threaten home rule--Cntl Bd to mediate
429CottmanWilliams Softens Edge on Fiscal Message--shifts focus of budget effort to compassion for DC kids
430ViseIRS Limits Home Credit in DC--Norton, Williams object to Alt Min Tax limit on deduction--IRS will resolve
430ViseWilliams Leaning Toward 31% Tax Cut--revised DC plan eases budget risk w/Council,CntlBd, Congress
MAY, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
501ViseDC Council Panel Approves Tax Cut Plan--Council, mayor still negotiating: $431M cut seems too big
501Vise(Cont)Tax cut to be paid for by holding all spending at current levels, refinancing debt, cutting into 'rainy day fund'
501StaffControl Board Official Named--Francis Smith, Control Bd attorney, named to replace John Hill
501EditorDancing Around DC Law--DC Alcoholic Beverage Control Board unresponsive to community interests
501KingTax Cuts to Fill Deep Pockets--Council tax-cutters disregrading tax revision committee--wouldn't enjoy cut
502StaffMayor, Council Make Headway on Possible Tax Cuts--income tax rate to fall frm 9.5% to 6.5% in 3 years%
502MendelsonCouncilman says $431M Tax Cut a Mistake--ignores most tax comm. proposals, needed reforms
503ViseTax Cut Criticized As Aid for DC's Rich--study concludes 65% of cuts would go to richest 20% of households
504EditorA Tax Plan that Needs Work--Evans/Catania plan looks like too much too soon: gotta fix tax system
504ViseDC Likely to Scale Back Tax Cut, Negotiators Say--little support for big cuts that favor rich...
505WilliamsDC Council Approves Massive Tax Cuts--10/ 2 vote adds provision to stop if revenues fall below +$250M
506WilliamsDC Residents Ponder Pros, Cons of Tax Cut--most seem to doubt wisdom of present version
506CottmanMayor Denounces DC Tax-Cut Plan--Williams says city can't afford 'failed, grotesque' proposal
508WilliamsMayor Rejects New Tax Plan--talks continue with DC Council cut $441M to $316M over 5, not 3, years
510EditorSaved by Control Board--$431M tax-slash averted--gloating Council forced to accept more prudent cuts
516CrenshawWhat DC Tax Cut Won't Do--cuts not big, but may help rebuild middle class, housing mkt up, all good news
517EditorDC's Consensus Budget--resident/business taxpayers real winners--no threat to future, but needed CntlBd
518Staff(Rich) Taxpayers Owed Home-buyer Credit get IRS Ltrs--800 above alternate minimum tax threshhold
526SpinnerPr.George's Passes $1.7 B budget--up 6%, $876M for education, $367M capital: $2.40/100 tax rate same
JUNE, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
605EditorMrs. Rivlin Quits the Day Job at Fed Reserve--will stay on Control Bd and return to Brookings to write
610ViseDC Tax-Cut Plan Assailed on Hill--Sen Durbin dislike tax cuts; Sen Hutchison goes after Council pay raises
612KingThe Republicrats' Tax Cut--Reps won because Dems more anxious to look good atmayor's expense
613EditorBoss K Bailey Hutchison--acts like worst of subcommittee predecessors--re payraises, debt deferral
615Staff2nd Firm (Moody's) Raises City's Credit Rating--from Ba1 (speculative elements) To Baa3 (adequate)
618StaffAnother Firm (Fitch IBCA) Boosts City's Credit Rating to BBB--(MediumQuality/Adequate=Moody's)
619KingBeware Congressional Scorpion--Hutchison et al interfere in DC's business: salaries, debt restrux, etc.
623StaffMontgomery County introduces Living Wage Bill--County contractors would pay $10.44/hr minimum
623StaffDC Council Amends Tax-Cut Package--halve cuts if GDP growth below 1.7%--may not cut max rate to 8%
624ViseHouse Panel Chairman Istook Wants to Protect DC Tax Cuts--questions Rivlin's 'circuit breaker' hedges
625ViseSenate Panel Slashes Raises for DC Council--Hutchison says $92.5K 'excessive' for parttime work
625Vise(cont)Huchison also gets city $5.8M from feds for drug tests; cuts rainy day fund to 4% year-end fund balance
626EditorMr. Istook's Take on the Budget--hopes latest subcommittee chairman will warm to trigger mechanisms
630EditorDC's Senate 'Friends'--3 democrats threaten DC budget with amendments: Hutchison, Durbin, Dorgen
JULY, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
703EditorSenatorial Courtesy for DC--budget sails thru w/ help from Hutchison, White House, Democrats, Council
705BehrTax Cuts: Seeds of a Dilemma--if local economy slows, DC could face difficult choices, says GWRC
706Evans OpEdCouncilman says Tax Cut Part of Formula for Thriving City--w/Tax Comm, Mayor and Council suggestions
708EditorSense of Council--Senate adopted unneeded sense-of-senate resolution to measure Council performance
709LiptonBack Taxes Put 7730 Properties on DC Auction Block--city got $21M over past 2 years, 220 owe over $10K
714WilsonMontgomery Cnty Exec Duncan Considers $11M State-like Tax Credit for Poor vice 'living wage" law
714EditorFalling for a 'Living Wage' Bill--serious flaws in proposal eliminated by Duncan's tax credit approach
715LiptonHouse Appn Subcom Adds $95M to DC Budget--severance pay, o/s tuitions. foster care, Anacostia River
720EditorRidding DC's Budget of Riders--House Appns Comm should remove riders added by DC Subcommittee
720StaffRep Istook Seeks Curbs on Office Rentals by DC--in view of recent exposure of empty rented bldgs
721LiptonDC Home Rule Wins as House Appns Comm drops 2 riders re needle exchange, referendum counting
727WoodleeCity Acts to Spend More of its $'s at Home--Williams signs bill to boost contracts to small DC businesses
728staffHouse OKs Debate on DC Riders: needles; medical marijuana; unmarrieds adoptions; fines for cigarettes
728LyDC Officials Try to Ease Y2K Worries--say City will cope with possible service emergencies
729LiptonDC to Sell $900M in (investment grade) Bonds--to restructure old debt, increase capital investments
729EditorRiding DC's Budget--House decision to debate riders isn't fair, isn't right--riders are anethma to DC
730LiptonHouse OKs $4.7B DC budget-- rejects medical marijuana, needles, abortions, but stops other riders
731EditorBody Blows to Home Rule--Conferees should work to remove intrusive riders, unwarranted restrictions
AUGUST, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
801LiptonDC Warms to House Chairman--Istook steers DC budget less to the right than some leaders feared
805LiptonDC Loses Ground on Riders--House-Senate Panel backs no needle exchange, no med marijuana
805LiptonAll--Too-Familiar Debate--All-Too-Familiar Conclusion--riders creep back in--despite Davis, Obey, et. al.
806DewarSen Voinovich Stays True to Form--Ohioan refuses to use hypothetical surplus to cut US taxes
806StaffCity Sells $927M in Bonds--$241M new, $686M refinanced to save $5.2M interest over bond life
807EditorDC Budget About Face--basic budget unchanged, some funds added--but at expense of unwanted riders
807StaffFinal Vote on $4.7B DC Budget put off (at Norton urging) til after Congress's recess--many riders back in
811StockwellDC Sues Credit Assistance Firm--for failure to keep promises to consumers to consolidate their debts
818Norton,EHTying Up Our City by the Purse Strings--details 'lose-lose' situation of Congressional riders--gotta resist
819LiptonGAO Assails Contracts by DC Contrl Bd--study says panel broke its own rules in consulting contracts
SEPTEMBER, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
904King OpEdLet's Sic Congress on Kansas--wouldn't allow teaching 'Ebonics", but OKs creationist science? double std
910FehrHouse Puts Strings on DC Budget--riders include no marijuana, needles, abortions, benefits for unmarried, etc.
910Fehr(Cont)House Action pits Chrmn Istook v. Moran who says same riders would not be pressed on own districts
911EditorAn Overburdened DC Budget--presidential veto warranted if Senate also passes conference rpt
915StaffMD Rep Connie Morella Decides Against Senate Bid--likely to remain on House DC subcommittee
917FehrSenate OKs DC Budget 52/39, Hutchison claims 'right to set standards', OMB to urge veto re home rule
918EditorThe DC Budget High-Wire Act--national leaders should give DC bill its wants, then leave city alone
929FehrPresident Vetoes DC Budget Bill--accuses Republicans of violating home rule to pursue social agenda
929EditorA Veto to Defend Home Rule--Congress should cut out the riders--not cut funding out of vindictiveness
930WilliamsTax Break for Retirees--wants income and pensions exemptions raised to match VA,MD for over 62/65
930FehrDC Budget Caught in Hill Standoff re drug riders: Istook says let Pres and Dems 'sit in mess they created'
OCTOBER, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
1002EditorDon't Cut Out CFO--Council legislation should not take CFO out of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) loop
1009FehrGOP Offers Changes in DC Budget--keeping restrictions on needles, marijuana--Norton says premature
1016King OpEdRep Istook's DC Pals--why did most city officials attend fund raiser for 'kinder, gentler, home rule assassin'?
1016EditorGet Serious re DC Budget--3rd House version still unacceptable, Senate a bit better--time to get serious
1016FehrRaise Lowered for DC Council--Senate reduces raise to 5% ($84K); keeps cell phone towers in DC bill
1024GrunwaldIn Legislative Tide, State Power Ebbs--Sen Voinovich unsuccessful champion of restoring state powers
1026FehrGOP's 1.4% Cut Could Cost DC $6M--from $429M fed payment, mostly corrections 176M, courts-related $228M
1026EilperinDC Funding Bill May Include Superfund Fight--Lott wants special non-DC gimick in, Hastert wants it out
1027EditorA Win in Montgomery Cnty--local earned-income tax credit for working poor--better than wage supplements
1028StaffNeedle Exchange Compromise Reached--House/Senate OK private distributor (but no med marijuana)
1029FehrVeto Looms for House-Passed DC Budget--House Republicans grafted national spending bill to it
NOVEMBER, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
1101EditorTreating DC as Pawn--DC bill to be vetoed 4th time--Congress,Pres should drop DC from their game
1102FehrClinton Seeks to End Impasse on DC Budget--newest version OK--if stripped of huge US spending bill
1103StaffSenate Approves DC budget 49 to 48 with huge unrelated federal spending bills attached--veto promised
1105StaffNeedle Exchange Issue Holds Up DC Budget--House still bans distribution by private clinics
1107FehrDC Control Bd Revising Its Purpose--wants legacy to be sustained financial fix thru ec development
1111StaffNegotiators Reach Deal on DC Budget acceptable to Clinton--but could be merged with other bills
1117PlaninWhite House, Hill Near Final Deal on Spending--GOP presses demand for across-the-board cut
1119StaffDC Budget Clears House, Stalls in Senate--part of $390B spending bill, incl. tax cut, riverfront fix-up etc.
1119EditorHill Brought Forth a Mouse--last 5 of 13 appns bills: shabby, showy end to nasty, duplicitous session
1120FehrSenate Sends DC Budget to President--many riders: marijuama, needles, lawyer fees, cell towers, etc.
1120PianinSpending Vote Ends Hill's Year--8-bill, $385B pkg includes DC, UN bills, no Medicare cut, etc.
1124FehrKey Congressman Calls Plan to Fund DC Bonuses Illegal--Istook says mayor can't use severance pay item
DECEMBER, 1999FINANCIAL/OTHER
1210WoodleeDC Recovers Less than Half Owed in US interest--sloppy record-keeping, not following guidelines
1219EditorIn Times of Plenty--no indication of budget increases for poor, near-poor despite MD, VA surpluses
1220BehrSources of Tax Revenues: sales, use taxes 23% of DC's $2.2B; 27% of MD's $6.2B; 22% of VA's $7.8B
1226SpinnerNeglect Hobbles Pr. George's Audit Office--new auditor finds serious staff, equipment problems
1231HamiltonDC PubServComm OKs Right to Shop for Electricity--like MD,VA--Pepco to auction MD plants, keep DC's

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