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D.C. Council Members Gear Up For Final 2012 Budget Battle

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To hear Council member Jack Evans tell it, Mayor Gray's budget doesn't go far enough in cutting spending, and he fears its proposed taxes will break the backs of small business owners.

"Its no wonder that we are ranked 50 or 51st in every study that has ever been done in being able to attract or maintain small businesses," says Evans.

Minutes later, Council Member Jim Graham takes the same budget and highlights the deep cuts to homeless services and welfare benefits.

"So thank you very much from those most vulnerable, we are going to ask you to contribute $32 million to closing the budget gap," says Graham. "This is inhuman."

Gray's proposal also includes an income tax increase for households with income above $200,000 -- a measure that has had a lukewarm reception from council members, including council chair Kwame Brown.

Of course, budget deficits often require both drastic cuts and tax hikes. And as the final spending plan takes shape, it's the job of council members to lobby their points of view -- or in this case -- tell the other side what they're missing.

DC Mayor's FY2012 Budget Overview
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