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Mayer Brown has been recognized for its work helping the DC Appleseed organization “bring more democracy to the District [of Columbia]” and advance local self-government in the US Capital area. At DC Appleseed's annual awards reception on September 16, the non-partisan non-profit organization recognized Mayer Brown for its pro bono work to secure budget autonomy for the District.

In 2014, after the DC Council had enacted and voters had ratified a budget autonomy referendum that permitted the District to spend its own revenues, Washington's mayor refused to enforce the amendment. A federal district court then invalidated the Budget Autonomy Act and enjoined the Council from enacting the budget. In 2015, with the support of a new mayor, a Mayer Brown team led by Washington DC-based Litigation & Dispute Resolution partner Brian Netter successfully represented the DC Council in having the injunction vacated by the court of appeals.

DC Appleseed’s mission is to solve problems affecting the daily lives of people who live and work in the US Capital area. The organization works with volunteer attorneys, business leaders and community experts to identify pressing challenges, conduct research and analysis, make specific recommendations for reform and implement solutions.