Natwar Gandhi, the District of Columbia's chief financial officer, is stepping down. Gandhi intends to retire effective June 1, he informed Mayor Vincent Gray in a letter Friday.
The letter does give a reason for Gandhi's resignation. He has served in the position for 15 years and was appointed to a new, five-year term last year. Gandhi's spokesman says the retirement is "for purely personal reasons."
Gandhi said in the letter it was not an easy decision, but he feels "comfortable" retiring at this time because the city is, in his words, "excellent financial condition."
D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson heralded Gandhi's tenure in a statement issued after the CFO's resignation.
"Stewardship of the District’s finances is the primary reason we have gone from junk bond status to double-A ratings on Wall Street," Mendelson said.
But there were also several scandals during his tenure, particularly in the Office of Tax and Revenue, which is under the control of the CFO. In 2007, OTR employee Harriet Walters was caught stealing more than $50 million. More recently, the tax office has been criticized for a lack of oversight and and there is an ongoing investigation into how city officials handled a lucrative lottery contract, which is the subject of a federal investigation.
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