WASHINGTON, DC - The Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority today held a hearing on Mayor Anthony A. William's nomination of Dr. Natwar M. Gandhi to be Chief Financial Officer for the District of Columbia. The Authority's action, following the DC Council's seven-day review period, confirms Gandhi as the District's third CFO since the independent office was created in 1995.
Gandhi, who since February 1997 has served as Deputy Chief Financial Officer for Tax and Revenue, is widely credited for revitalizing the District's tax agency. During his tenure, the Office of Tax and Revenue improved its customer service efforts and made tax collection more efficient, allowing the District to turn projected deficits into surpluses for the last three years. These surpluses have placed the District one year away from the return of home rule.
As CFO, Gandhi leads the office responsible for the District's finances, and he has established three top priorities: receiving a clean opinion, on schedule, from the District's independent auditor for FY 2000 and all subsequent years; obtaining a balanced budget for FY 2000 and beyond; and, providing effective, efficient financial systems to support the decision processes of District policymakers.
"As a first generation immigrant, I am grateful and proud of this opportunity, and I look forward to being an instrumental part of bringing home rule back to our nation's capital," said Gandhi. "My team and I relish the challenge of improving the District's financial processes. Instead of operating in a crisis mode, we will become a role model to other jurisdictions nationwide."
The Chief Financial Officer, although appointed by the Mayor, must be confirmed by the DC Financial Authority. The Authority, also known as the Control Board, was created by Congressional mandate in 1995 to assist the District government in its financial restructuring efforts.