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FY 2023 Fairfax County and School Budgets

On 24 February the Federation heard presentations on the School and County FY2023 budgets

Presenters:

  • Alice Wigington, Budget Director, FCPS
  • Phil Hagen, Deputy Director, Fairfax County Office of Budget
After the presentation, Budget co-chair David Edelman sent Phil Hagen several questions based his presentation. His reponses are italicized below:
  • Page 3 – It references an increase of 109 positions. Is there a breakdown of these new positions in one place?
  • A table is included in the Advertised Budget Summary, beginning on page 37, that provides a breakdown of the new positions as well as each funding adjustment with an impact to the General Fund.
  • Page 9 – Residential equalization is 9.57% and Page 3 an increase in average tax bill of $666. How much would the mill rate have to be decreased to reduce the increase to zero? [To be clear I am not proposing this; but I imagine it is a question that will be raised by some of our membership and others in the community.] Do I have the number right that a decrease in 1-cent equals an average decrease on a homeowner's tax bill of $53 dollars?
  • The mean assessed value of residential property has increased from $610,545 in FY 2022 to $668,974 in FY 2023. At the current tax rate of $1.14, the average tax bill will increase $666 to $7,626. Each 1-cent decrease in the tax rate would result in a decrease of $66.90 on the average tax bill, and a decrease of approximately 10 cents would be required to hold the average tax bill flat.
  • Page 13 – Personal Property Tax has increased with increasing car/vehicle levy. Where is the assessed value of each vehicle calculated from?
  • Vehicle assessments are based on the January edition of the J.D. Power Associates Valuation Services Used Car Guide. More information can be found at https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/taxes/vehicles/vehicle-values
  • Page 24 – Metro Subsidy Requirement – Does the $9.10 million dollars represent the full ask of WMATA? I believe that with their own budget problems they have asked Fairfax County to increase our contribution?
  • That increase fully funds the ask in the General Manager's proposed budget.
  • Page 29 – There are 7 proposed new positions for the "PLUS System". I am not familiar with the PLUS system. Could you point me to a place that explains its purpose?
  • PLUS is the Planning Land Use System, which is being developed to replace and integrate several legacy systems used in the land development process. The proposed positions will provide maintenance and customer support for the system. There was a NewsCenter article posted recently regarding updates that expanded the functionality of the system. That article includes a high-level overview of the system and a link to the system, so it might be a good place to start: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/news/plus-customer-service-platform-expands-land-use-offerings
  • Page 32 – We are creating a new Special Revenue Fund for Land Development Services. Can you provide more information on the rationale for this new fund and what it is supposed to accomplish? [Personally, this is the first I am hearing about it.]
  • This change is intended to provide more transparency in how land development fees are used. The goal would be for Land Development Services to be self-sustaining – its fees generating sufficient revenues to support the services it provides. If excess revenues are generated due to increased development activity, they will be available in the fund to allow the agency to respond to the increased demand for its permitting, plan review and inspection services.

Federation Committees evaluation of the FY 2023 Fairfax County and School Budgets

During February and March each Federation committee evaluated their portion of the FY2023 budgets. Some committees had no inputs to the proposed resolution, but after several revisions, the Federation approved the committee's proposed resolution (Version 8) and presents a revised version (9) for the membership's consideration our March meeting.

At its March Federation membership meeting it approved the board-approved resolution on the FY 2023 Fairfax County and School Budgets

The approved resolution was forwarded to Members of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, County Executive Brian Hill, Distinguished Members of the Fairfax County School Board and School Superintendent Scott Brabrand via a letter dated 10 April 2022.

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