- Seattle socialist: Minimum-wage discussion skewed by ‘right-wing’ GAO analysis
- U.N. warns of Muslim ‘cleansing’ in Central African Republic
- Senate blocks change to military sex assault cases
- Drug mix may have cured child born with HIV, doctors say
- De Blasio’s wife irks former mansion chef with ‘servant’ remark
- Russia’s neighbors shiver amid Putin’s Cold War moves in Ukraine
- New SAT: The essay portion is to become optional
- Military group can’t march to honor the fallen at Boston Marathon due to security changes
- Senate passes bills deleting ‘retarded’ from laws
- China announces biggest military hike in 3 years: We are not ‘boy scouts with spears’
Cheh blasts Gray’s veto of D.C. Council bonds-tax compromise
Council member Mary M. Cheh was livid Wednesday about Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s use of a pocket veto to make a tax on out-of-state bonds retroactive, even though the D.C. Council voted to delay implementation of the tax until 2012.
Mr. Gray said his intention was to honor the District’s promises to bond raters on Wall Street by keeping $13.4 million in the city’s fund balance instead of delaying the tax, even though he recognizes the unfairness of a retroactive assessment on D.C. residents who earn interest income on the bonds.
“As soon as we put money in, are we going to take money out?” Mr. Gray said Wednesday. “It’s the underlying principle that’s involved.”
The bonds tax is the first of its kind on D.C. residents, who had enjoyed the exemption even though every other jurisdiction in the United States taxes out-of-state bonds. It was also a point of contention during budget talks earlier this year, specifically around questions of when it should be begin and how the revenue should be used.
For now, it is retroactive to Jan. 1 of this year.
Mrs. Cheh, Ward 3 Democrat, said she had not gotten notice Tuesday night of the mayor’s veto, which rolls back her extensive efforts to delay the tax. Constituents in her relatively affluent ward hold a large percentage of the out-of-state bonds.
“We’re putting money in,” she said. “We’re just not putting as much money in.”
Coincidentally, Mrs. Cheh and Mr. Gray pitched their divergent views at a ribbon-cutting event Wednesday morning at the Guy Mason Recreation Center in Mrs. Cheh’s ward. The pair exchanged private comments even as they attempted to smile for cameras with a large pair of scissors.
Mr. Gray also said he had two lengthy meetings with council Chairman Kwame R. Brown on Tuesday to discuss the pocket veto, specifically a decision not to sign a technical clarification bill tied to the fiscal 2012 budget.
“Needless to say, he’s at a different place than I am,” Mr. Gray said.
To amend the situation or reverse the mayor’s actions, the council will need to introduce emergency legislation and approve it with nine votes from the 13-member body in an impromptu session during recess or when they reconvene in mid-September, according to a Brown spokeswoman.
The situation could set up another tussle over the bonds tax when the council returns from its recess this fall.
Council member Tommy Wells, Ward 6 Democrat, spurred an effort to make the bonds tax permanent instead of “buying it back” through additional revenues. He succeeded in a contentious 7-6 vote.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Tom Howell Jr. covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Tax-prep firms pitch in, cash in on Obamacare
- Obama tries to reassure Hispanics on Obamacare
- Half of uninsured look to Obamacare exchanges for coverage
- Another Obamacare deadline moved: Non-compliant plans get 2-year extension
- House votes to delay Obamacare individual mandate
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By Tammy Bruce
- Aronofsky's 'Noah' banned in Qatar, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates
- AP Exclusive: Man said to create bitcoin denies it
- Back to the Future: HUVr Tech marketing video goes viral with hoverboard release tease
- Russias Putin nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
- Putin has transformed Russian army into a lean, mean fighting machine
- Unemployment insurance vote could happen next week
- First pot business license issued in Washington
- 1M kids stop school lunch due to Michelle Obamas food standards
- Bill Clinton poses for photo with Bunny Ranch prostitutes
- U.S. tasks Navy destroyer to Black Sea amid Ukraine tensions
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again