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Mayor Muriel Bowser has dumped Vince Gray‘s development projects and his appointees; now she might ditch his stance on the budget autonomy referendum too. According to a new court filing, Bowser is considering changing the mayoral position on whether the referendum has legal force.
The amendment to the Home Rule charter, passed with more than 80 percent of the vote in 2013, means that the District no longer needs congressional approval for its annual budget—-at least in theory. But when budget season came around last year, Gray and Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey DeWitt, convinced that the District can’t just grant itself budget autonomy, insisted on submitting the budget to the city’s federal overlords.
Now on appeal, the D.C. Council’s lawsuit against Gray and DeWitt has had mostly bad luck so far. But now Bowser could be changing the mayoral position. In a motion, embedded below, Bowser asks for a 30-day break to consider her stance on the amendment and possibly “take a position and course of action different from the prior Mayor.”
Not everyone is thinking about changing their minds. DeWitt still thinks enacting the budget without congressional approval would be illegal. So does Attorney General Karl Racine, meaning that, ahead of Bowser’s potential change, the attorney general has stopped representing the mayor in the case.
H/t Zoe Tillman