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Reiterating what his deputies said two days earlier, Mayor Vince Gray told a gathering of D.C. Week techies last night that the D.C. Council killed a controversial tech incentive measure out of a lack of understanding.

The proposal would have cut capital gains taxes by two-thirds for D.C. angel investors who back local startups. It was dropped by the Council from a broader tech incentives bill Gray signed last week.

“Let me be candid,” Gray said last night at the Warner Theatre, in a haze of blue-tinted rock-star fog. “The bill could’ve done even more.”

He emphasized the role the measure could’ve played in getting more tech firms off the ground. “The D.C. Council removed that part of the bill largely because its catalytic impact was not fully understood,” he said, echoing comments by the head of the business development team in the office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development on Monday.

Gray urged the audience members—-largely entrepreneurs themselves—-to lobby their councilmembers to get the provision passed.

Photo by Aaron Wiener