- The Washington Times - Friday, June 14, 2019

The Trump administration and Congress have yet to pay the District of Columbia $7 million for President Trump’s 2017 inauguration ceremony, while Mr. Trump plans a Fourth of July speech at the Lincoln Memorial, The Washington Post reported.

Congress originally provided $20 million for the ceremony, but the inauguration ended with a $27.3 million price tag, according to financial records researched by The Post.

The city dipped into an events fund for the inauguration that is used to host other gatherings and counteract violent threats.

With Mr. Trump planning a Fourth of July speech and parade, officials worry that, with money being spent faster than it can be invested, it will leave the account depleted by the end of the year.

Officials already spent $4.4 million of the $14 million budget, which will leave the fund with a deficit by the end of the year.

“The point now is that the account has been drained, and being careful with the money has not been enough to make up for not being reimbursed” for the inauguration, Del. Elizabeth Holmes Norton said.

No estimates have been released about the cost of the upcoming Fourth of July ceremonies, but officials worry that the event, which has typically been unaffiliated with the president, will attract protesters and drive the cost of the event.

“We have and will continue to work closely with our federal partners regardless of administration because ensuring the safety of our residents and visitors is paramount,” John Falcicchio, chief of staff to D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, said. “Our commitment to this function is ironclad, and all that we ask of our federal partners is continued cooperation and the resources to carry out these activities.”

A senior official told The Post that D.C. has not asked for additional reimbursement. Other D.C. officials have dissented from that account, saying they have yet to receive the funds they’ve requested.

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