The D.C. Council yesterday fulfilled a promise not to increase income taxes, approving a midyear budget bill that would cut $8.9 million from Mayor Marion Barry's 1987 supplemental budget proposal -- $750,000 of it from his planned increase for public schools.

The resulting $2.5 billion budget will still include a $2.2 million midyear increase in the schools' $388 million budget. But the council's action to reduce Barry's proposal was the focus of heated debate during yesterday's voting session.

In a 10-to-3 vote, the council rejected a move by council member Carol Schwartz (R-At Large) to restore the full Barry request. Schwartz's proposal instead would have removed an additional $750,000 from the Tenant Assistance Program, whose $15 million appropriation is cut by $4 million under the approved budget bill.

Council members Nadine P. Winter (D-Ward 6) and Harry L. Thomas (D-Ward 5) joined Schwartz in her request, but other council members angrily shot down the effort, charging Schwartz with indulging in political gamesmanship.

"It is time for this council to stop being a student council," said John A. Wilson (D-Ward 2), who this month worked out the budget compromise with Council Chairman David A. Clarke and Barry that led to Barry's withdrawal of a planned $17.9 million income tax increase.

"It is grossly unfair to the people who make the hard decisions for people to come in and politically cheap-shot them without even talking about how they feel about the issue," Wilson said to Schwartz. "Who wants to vote to cut the school system? I don't."

Also, several council members went to the defense of the troubled Tenant Assistance Program, which has faltered because landlords have been reluctant to participate. The program "must work with the support of the council," said council member Charlene Drew Jarvis (D-Ward 4). "It cannot be seen as the goody bag."

The council's budget action came one day after a parents group said there is a "legitimate crisis" in the schools stemming from underfunding.

A report released Monday by Parents United for the D.C. Public Schools stated that District school buildings are plagued with safety problems that include faulty windows, collapsing ceilings and leaky roofs that pose dangers to students and teachers.

The group said that budget cuts such as those approved by the council exacerbate the problem.

"It is a very sad day when the schools are not able to have the money," Rod Boggs, legal counsel for Parents United, said yesterday after the council vote. "It is regrettable in the face of the needs that are so evident in the physical condition of the schools."

But council members said they felt no guilt in trimming a budget that they say has been consistently underspent.

"We owe more to the children of our schools than to simply provide great amounts of money," said Clarke. "Parents United defines full funding {as being} what the school board asks."