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Mayor Gray Outlines Plans For D.C.'s $417M Budget Surplus

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A number of factors contributed to higher-than-expected tax revenues in the District.
Joshua Bousel: http://www.flickr.com/photos/joshbousel/197722630/
A number of factors contributed to higher-than-expected tax revenues in the District.

The District is reporting a $417 million budget surplus, but don't expect city lawmakers to go on a spending spree.

The huge surplus, an 11 percent increase in revenue from the year before, was caused by a number of factors, according to city officials:

  • The District is attracting younger, richer residents, who in turn are spending more in the city.
  • Speed cameras have been catching a lot more cars than city officials estimated.
  • D.C. was also boosted by election year spending — all those TV ads and consultant fees ended up helping D.C.'s bottom line.
  • There was a huge jump in estate tax revenue, which was caused by the death of one extremely wealthy invidual, who ended up leaving the city more than $50 million.

While council members may be clamoring to spend the budget surplus, Mayor Vincent Gray says the money will go into the savings account. He says this will help D.C. reach its goal of having two months of cash on-hand.

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