WASHINGTON Jan 29 Washington D.C. ended its
fiscal year in October with a $417 million surplus, which pushed
the city's "rainy day fund" to $1.5 billion, its highest level
in seven years.
Mayor Vincent Gray said in a statement the extra dollars
will help "make important and significant new investments in
social programs that we have long wanted to make, but for which
we did not previously have the funds."
But he added that the district should also save some of the
According to the mayor's office, the surplus came partly
from $277 million in increased revenue, $50 million in
underspending and a $90 million from other areas. Total tax
revenue for the fiscal year had been estimated at $5.6 billion.
While the nation's capital fared better than many other
cities during the 2007-09 recession, it remains particularly
vulnerable to federal budget decisions. A city without a state,
it relies more on the federal government for direct funding and
many of its residents work for U.S. agencies.
Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi has pressed for the
city to keep a large reserve during the "fiscal cliff" emergency
in December and in preparation for the automatic federal
spending cuts set to begin on March 1.
"Our Fund Balance is in excellent shape, we are experiencing
growth in both jobs and population and we are getting the best
possible interest rates on our bonds," he said in a statement in
advance of the annual financial report's release on Tuesday.