Councilmember Vincent Orange is proposing to exempt DCPS teachers from paying the city's income tax.
D.C. Councilmember Vincent Orange is proposing to exempt the city's public school teachers from paying the D.C. income tax, and that exemption would likely include Orange's wife, who is employed by D.C. public schools.
When Orange introduced the measure at last week's legislative session, the councilmember left out the fact his wife is a DCPS teacher.
He says it's important to support local educators who choose to live in D.C. As for concerns about introducing legislation that would benefit a family member, he says, "If it comes up, I will get a ruling from the general counsel as to whether I can vote on that bill."
Orange says the process is routine, and the third time he's introduced this bill. When asked if he sees any conflict of interest in the matter, he says no.
"Absolutely not," Orange says. "Under the rules, there is no conflict of interest. It's a mere introduction. I am not in the role or in the process of it coming into fruition; that's up to Jack Evans."
Councilmember Evans chairs the Finance and Revenue Committee. Orange is not a member of the committee and will have no say on whether the bill makes it out of committee and goes before the full council for a vote.
Orange also says his wife is a special education teacher and a visiting instructor, not a regular classroom teacher. He says there's a chance she may not qualify for the exemption, though that distinction between special education teachers and classroom teachers is not in Orange's proposal.
Under the proposal, Charter school teachers would not qualify the same exemption.