A stand-pat District of Columbia operating budget of $1.4 billion for the 1980 fiscal year was proposed to the City Council yesterday by Mayor Walter E. Washington.
The budget, $115.3 million higher than the 1979 outlay recently enacted by Congress, does not call for new taxes or increases in tax rates, nor does it provide for major new programs.
The budget anticipates increases in revenues from income taxes and sales taxes, reflecting higher personal and corporate earnings and rising retail activity.
Although real estate assessment levels may continue to increase, collections of property taxes are expected to decline slightly as the result of a recently enacted tax-relief program.
In addition to the $1.4 billion in operating funds - the cost of actually runnin city departments and programs - the mayor proposed $158 million earmarked to start construction programs to be financed by borrowing.
The biggest program is the $45 million earmarked to start construction of the proposed downtown civic center. The revised plan and its financing program were endorsed yesterday by the council.
The construction programs push the total spending package above $1.5 billion for the 1980 fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1, 1979.
Although Mayor Washington probably will be replaced in office by Marion Barry before the budget is sent to Congress for final enactment early next year, chances are it will be little changed by council deliberations in the meantime.
Barry, the apparent but not yet official winner of the Democratic mayoral primary, is now chairman of the council's finance and revenue committee.
He said yesterday he expects to take office Jan. 2 and study the budget situation in detail before seeking changes that would put his imprint on city spending policies. He said he would do that by proposing amendments to the budget next spring.
As proposed yesterday, the budget is technically balanced, but its anticipated spending is $17 million greater than the funds available to the city under existing law.
The proposed budget asks President Carter to make up the gap by supporting an increase in the federal payment to $317 million.
Carter requested $317 million for the 1979 budget, but Congress slashed the figure to $235 million. The annual federal payment compensates the city for costs related to the government's presence in the city, including exemptions from local taxes.
The biggest chunk of new spending in the budget, which is $115.3 million more than that approved by Congress for 1978, is $28.1 million for health, welfare and recreation programs, including several mandated by federal court orders.
Other large increases include $15 million each for rising Metro transit subsidies and pension costs for retired police and firefighters. Part of the latter is to make up for a $7.9 million cut in pension funds in the 1978 budget.
Among the proposed new funding is $89,000 to hire four people to administer the Commission on Licensure to Practice the Healing Art. Over the weekend, the commission's chairman complained that the current lack of staff is making it impossible to discipline imcompetent and corrupt doctors.
The budget omits funds for at least three programs approved by the council - rent subsidies for low-income families that face higher rents under the recently extended rent control law, aid for families needing funds to make down payments for home purchases and the removal of lead-based paint from old dwellings.
Budget Director Comer S. Coppie said the council would have to produce more revenue if these programs are to be carried out.
Mayor Washington appeared in good humor at a briefing for reporters on the budget, his 12th and probably last of his 11-year team as first the appointed mayor-commissioner and later as the city's popularly elected mayor.
He pledged "to work as hard in the process of transition as I can."
The mayor described the new spending program as "another in a series of inflation-induced austerity budgets" and added that "I can report that it maintains the city's broad base of services. . .
"I can also report to you that the fiscal condition of our city is sound. This is so because we began taking aggressive action three years ago that would ward off a Proposition 13-type challenge in the city."
He cited the real estate tax relief program and a three-year moratorium on increases in other forms of taxes.
The mayor said the city would continue to push for the right, now denied by Congress, to tax the incomes of suburbanites who work in the city, and would seek a fixed formula for setting the federal payment. President Carter endorsed a formula approach yesterday in signing the city's 1979 budget into law, United Press International reported.
Without such added sources of revenue, the mayor said, the 1981 budget would fall at least $61 million short of expected revenues.
The proposed operating budget for 1980 is 8.9 percent above what Congress approved for 1979, the mayor said. However, some of the added money will be needed for various programs before the end of fiscal 1979. If that is taken into account, the increase in the 1980 budget would be only $82.3 million - or 6 percent - above the 1979 figure.
That barely keeps pace with inflation, the mayor said.
The budget proposes an increase of 572 new jobs, giving the city a fulltime payroll of 34,321.
The increases are scattered through various city agencies, with about half to be assigned to the sprawling Department of Human Resources. Of those, at least 195 would be hired in response to federal court orders requiring improved conditions at city institutions.
"Approximately 15 to 20 percent of the District budget is allocated to programs the federal government has (mandated for) the District during the last decade," the budget statement said, including "the cost of complying with court orders."
D.C. General Hospital, now independent of DHR, would get 239 new jobs at a cost of $10.5 million, mainly to handle administrative and maintenance work formerly done by DHR. However, the DHR budget or manpower would not be reduced to reflect any reduced workload.
One likely area of controversy in the budget is financing for public schools. The mayor proposed $258 million, an increase of $3.8 million over 1979. The Board of Education is expected to approve its proposed budget tomorrow that would be $22 million greater, and then to appeal to the council for its higher figure.
The proposed construction program includes 45 projects of which 25 are new.
In addition to a start on the civic center, the program seeks $23 million to build a washwater and sludge disposal plant as Blue Plains to eliminate pollutants in the Potomac River.
Three school renovation projects totaling $19 million are proposed at Coolidge High School, Burdick Career Center and Chamberlain Career Center.
Recreation improvements totaling $2 million are proposed for the Shapiro tract in Adams-Morgan and at Ridge, Edgewood and Watts Branch recreational centers and at National Children's Island in the Anacostia River.
Improvements costing $4 million are Proposed at the Richardson Dwellings and Lincoln Heights public housing projects. Renovations totaling $20 million are proposed at Glenn Dale Hospital, at Cedar Knoll children's detention facility and at D. C. General Hospital.
The facilities of Fire Engine Company 20 at 4300 Wisconsin ave. NW would be replaced at a cost of $2.6 million.