Public Papers

Message to the Congress Transmitting the District of Columbia Budget and Supplemental Appropriations Request


To the Congress of the United States:

In accordance with the District of Columbia Self-Government and Governmental Reorganization Act, I am transmitting the District of Columbia Government's 1991 Budget request and 1990 Budget supplemental request.

The District's general fund 1991 operating budget request is ,241 million. Total 1991 Federal payments anticipated in the District's budget are 0 million. The District's 1990 general fund budget supplemental request contains 1 million in cost increases and 1 million in budget authority rescissions, for a net decrease of million. This transmittal does not affect the Federal budget.

There are three District budget issues to which I would direct your attention. First, I encourage you to continue the abortion funding policy that the Congress established in the District's 1989 and 1990 appropriations laws, which prohibit the use of both Federal and local funds for abortions.

Second, the 1991 Budget proposes to modify and make permanent the 1990 pilot project that requires the District of Columbia to charge Federal establishments directly for water and sewer services. Inappropriate charges and excessive usage have been eliminated through this pilot project. As a result, Federal appropriations under the pilot program for water and sewer services for 1990 will be roughly million (or about 12 percent) lower than under the old, lump-sum payment system.

Third, I ask that the Congress reinstate the President's apportionment authority over the Federal payment to the District of Columbia. Directing immediate disbursement of the Federal payment at the start of the fiscal year increases Treasury's cost of borrowing. Further, the Congress very clearly did not intend to exempt this payment from sequestration in the original Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act as current law permits.

George Bush

The White House,

May 1, 1990.