BUDGET & TAXES
2011 CIP for schools [pdf]
2013-03 The City Manager proposed a tax increase—real estate 4% and personal property 5%—at a time when federal salaries are frozen. The salaries of City staff would also be frozen and they are being asked to pay a deductible for medical plans—$400 for individual and $800 for families—as well as increased contributions to the retirement plan.
2012-01-10 Sewer rates expected to rise 100 percent between 2015 and 2021. A new billing system now separates the cost of sewers from that of water. The funds are needed to repair and/or replace the City’s old storm-water pipes that were built for a suburban community and cannot service the development in the past decade.
2012-05-07 City Council adopted a budget for the fiscal year 2013 that is 3.7 % bigger than last year’s budget. The average homeowner’s tax bill is expected to increase by $52 or 1.2%.
2012-04 The new City Manager Rashad Young gave a budget presentation to City Council that included a Ten-Year Capital Improvement Program (CIP) presentation and funding tables. Some citizens doubt the growth expected by this budget will happen and therefore projects to solve existing infrastructure problems will never get funded.
2012-03-13 City Council authorized the advertisement of an increase in residential and commercial property tax rates for the 2012 calendar year. The base tax rate may be raised up to one cent per year—about a 2.2 percent increase—when Council adopts the budget on May 7. More information is available on the City’s website http://alexandriava.gov/Budget.
2011-10-24 Eileen Bradley, the Interim President of the Burke Branch Friends, is asking citizens to communicate their concerns and support for a fair and decent budget for the library to the Mayor and City Council. While the City had a $9.8 M surplus this year, it may be facing a $14 M deficit next year. Elected officials need to hear from the voters as they move forward in the budget process. Friends of the Libraries would like to continue to recover from the budget hits taken in 2009 and would like the new budget to be better than the current one.
2011-10-24 (continued) The needs of the Alexandria libraries are critical; for example, to preserve services—such as staying open one additional night (started in July 2011)—to increase acquisition of eBooks, and to conduct a needs assessment (the last one was done 16 years ago). In the past the libraries took a hit for the team with major budget cuts that impacted personnel and maintenance. Additional cuts now to their budget will degrade services to the community.
2011-05-02 City Council adopted FY 2012 Budget: property tax rate increased 2 cents to 99.8 per $100 of assessed value for transportation, school capital needs, employee compensations. Average homeowner’s tax bill increase 2.5 % or $107. General fund operating budget increased 6.6 % but only 1/3 was for transportation improvements. Schools got a 4.1 % increase over previous year. City employees’ pension contribution remained same. Commercial Add-on Tax defeated.
2010-12-06 The City is proposing a new commercial tax to raise funds to solve infrastructure problems called the Transportation Add-On Tax. It can be up to 12.5 %. More information is available at http://alexandriava.gov/TransportationAddOnTax.
2010-10-14 The City Manager has announced the proposed budget for 2011. The Public Schools rebuffed City staff input into their budget. Traditionally SHA Board Members do not take a position on budget items since each resident has personal preferences how to spend tax dollars. Citizens are encouraged to write directly to the City with their opinions. See the City website http://alexandriava.gov/budget/info/default.aspx?id=27144.
2010-05-03 The City Council adopted the budget for 2011 that included increased property taxes to support increases in funding for public schools, WMATA, the operating budget, and salaries of City employees. The Council did not establish a new stormwater utility—opposed by SHA as too much bureaucracy—and instead dedicated $0.05 of the property tax increase to stormwater management. In addition parking rates, trash fees, and recycling costs to residents will increase.
2010-05-03 City Council will adopt Alexandria’s next budget. Jim Hartmann, the City Manager, proposes closing the budget gap with an increase in real estate taxes. SHA’s Board of Directors took no position on the budget except to oppose the Storm Water Utility and to urge citizens to write to the Mayor and Council Members in support of programs desired or ones that could be cut.
2010-04-08 The SHA Board of Directors unanimously passed a resolution urging City Council to reject a proposal to establish a Storm Water Utility.
2010-02-22 Citizens from SHA and Brookville-Seminary Valley attended a briefing about the City’s proposal to institute a new fee to finance storm water management. City staff presented lots of good information related to flooding problems and storm sewers. City Council had directed staff to study the option for getting additional funding in addition to the current budget from real estate taxes. The amount of the fee as proposed would increase funding by less than $3 million. Unlike real estate taxes, this fee would not be deductible. City staff would require at least one additional person to run this program and they would set the fee rate and decide appeals.
2010-02-??: A joint meeting on new proposed storm water fee (tax) is planned with Brookville-Seminary Valley civic association. Stay tuned.
Submit comments on the FY 2011 Budget
The City of Alexandria expects Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 to be another challenging year based on early economic forecasts. As the City begins the budget process, we would like your input regarding the FY 2011 Operating Budget and Capitol Improvement Program. Residents are encouraged to submit their comments online at alexandriava.gov/Budget.