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Norton: CFO does end-run on home rule

(Published May 6, 2002)

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton is decrying a recent attempt by Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi to sidestep the District’s home rule process by going directly to Congress with a request to change the law.

"Dr. Gandhi has engaged in a stealth campaign to overturn a decision of the Superior Court, undermine District law, violate basic principles of home rule, and contravene the stated policy of his office to follow the will of elected policy leaders," Norton wrote on May 1 in a letter to Mayor Anthony A. Williams and D.C. City Council Chairman Linda Cropp. Norton sent copies of the letter to Gandhi, members of the city council and local news media.

The dispute apparently stems from members of the CFO’s staff recently visiting the Senate and House Appropriations Commit-tees’ staffs to request that Congress override — among other things — recent legislation that limits the CFO’s authority over D.C. government personnel. Norton’s letter said she will "fight any attempt by any member of Congress to enact" Gandhi’s requests without approval of D.C. elected officials.

Copyright 2002, The Common Denominator