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Recession Catches Up With D.C.

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By Patrick Madden

The District is facing a $175 million budget gap, that's according to the latest revenue projections for the city.

For a while, it seemed like D.C. really was “recession proof,” while neighboring states faced huge budget shortfalls and debated drastic measures like furloughs, the District seemed relatively well off.

But Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi says after crunching the numbers for next year’s budget, it’s clear the national recession has finally caught up with the District.

He points to the huge drop in projected sales tax revenue.

“More than half of our sales taxes is tourism generated so the big decline is in sales tax of about $52 million,” says Ghandi.

The stock market is also down, and that’s affected how much the city collects in capital gains taxes.

District leaders will have to figure out how to fill the gap over the next two to the three months, and unlike previous budgets, Gandhi says its unlikely the city will be able to tap it’s rainy day fund to help cover the shortfall.

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