A House committee has approved a bill by D.C. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton that would reduce the time that a vacancy on City Council can be filled with a special election.
The bill, which also has the support of Mayor Vincent Gray, could save the District time and money. It relates to the vacancy left on the Council last month after Harry Thomas Jr. resigned in the wake of embezzlement and filing false income tax charges.
The measure, which met approval of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, could cut back on expenses for opening poll sites, setting up voting machines and printing ballots for the special election that will occur this spring to replace Thomas. Overall, the new bill could save D.C. taxpayers more than $300,000.
Norton had introduced a similar measure last year that failed passage.
However, her latest effort now widens the window to allow for a special election to take place at least 70 days but not more than 174 days after a Council vacancy becomes available.