Riding the surging local and national economies, several Washington area representatives moved up the income ladder with asset portfolios that grew 50 percent or more last year, financial disclosure statements filed yesterday show.
Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.), for example, reported assets of $875,000 to $2 million, up from a minimum of $561,000 a year ago. Davis, who represents most of Fairfax County and eastern Prince William County and was named part of the House GOP leadership last winter, drew half his wealth from stock and retirement plans from his former employer, Litton PRC Inc., a McLean computer systems firm.
Rep. Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) saw his balance sheet shoot up to between $267,000 and $581,000, from a minimum of $103,000 last year, thanks largely to booming stock market holdings.
And the assets of Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), a law professor, rose from at least $291,000 in 1997 to between $478,000 and $1.2 million in 1998, with her holdings split among 24 accounts dominated by annuities and growth and technology venture funds.
Members also reported income beyond the $136,700 annual House salary.
Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett (R-Md.), who listed $2.5 million to $11 million in assets, reported $37,000 to $120,000 in rent and other income, much of it from two parcels of land in Frederick County worth $1 million to $5 million each.
Some members reported unusual items. Rep. Herbert H. Bateman (R-Va.), who represents Stafford County, listed a parking space valued at $1,001 to $15,000 as part of his overall holdings of $731,000 to $1.7 million.
He also donated $21,000 worth of shares in Smithfield Foods Inc., a meatpacker that has been involved in environmental disputes with Virginia and federal agencies, to a foundation named for him.
Not all the lawmakers did quite as well. Rep. Albert R. Wynn (D-Md.), who represents Prince George's County and part of Montgomery County, reported about as much in debt as in assets, both in the range of $250,000 to $600,000. His holdings were mostly in real estate in the District and Prince George's County, with mortgages on those properties accounting for his debt.
Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest (R-Md.), a former high school history teacher from the Eastern Shore, reported assets, including joint ownership of inherited securities, of $29,000 to $260,000. And Rep. James P. Moran Jr. (D-Va.) filed a brief report that listed no assets and revolving charge account liability of $20,000 to $30,000.
That's not to say that lawmakers did not enjoy some travel and speech-making benefits, the latter of which by law must be donated to charity. Moran, for instance, gave $4,230 to charity for speeches to trade and industry groups and an appearance for the K-Mart Family Foundation/Kids Race Against Drugs.
Gilchrest, meanwhile, went on a U.S. Coast Guard investigatory trip to Antarctica and joined a U.S. delegation to an International Maritime Organization meeting in London.
Rep. Constance A. Morella (R-Md.) reported seven paid trips. These included two with the Aspen Institute, to South Carolina and Hawaii, and other appearances for interest groups in Israel; Chicago; Rochester, N.Y.; San Francisco; and New York City, the last of which was to accept a Glamour magazine Women of the Year award. Morella reported assets of $1.1 million to $2.8 million with her husband, compared with a minimum of $800,000 in 1997.
Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.) reported assets of $216,000 to $515,000, compared with at least $167,000 in 1997, and had his expenses paid by the International Foundation for Election Systems for an eight-day humanitarian mission to Bosnia and Croatia.
Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.) disclosed the $61,632 Baltimore County school salary of his wife, assets of $304,000 to $665,000, and liabilities of $80,000 to $200,000, including full payment of $15,000 to $50,000 in outstanding business taxes to the IRS.