The Fairfax County proposed FY2017 budget has a 5.5% real estate tax hike for the typical Fairfax County homeowner. Since FY2000, the typical homeowner's real estate taxes will have increased 154%, from $2400 to $6100, more than three times faster than household income.
Real estate tax hikes since FY2000 give the county an extra $1.5 billion. Over the same period, the cost of benefits and raises for county and school employees was greater than $1.6 billion. This is why, despite large tax increases, staffing for and libraries and parks has been cut and class size has been increased. Eighty percent of the Fairfax County Public Schools' FY2017 $121M budget increase is for benefits and 3.5% raises.
County and school employees have Cadillac health plans, which will be fined under Obamacare, pensions with retirement at age 55 with up to 75% of salary; and have had, for the past 16 years, average annual raises of nearly 4%. County and school employees have had salary increases in 14 of the past 17 years. While there are reports of teachers leaving to go to neighboring school districts for better pay, there have been no reports of them going to the private sector, which no longer provides pensions, low-deductible health plans, and 3.5% raises. Raises of 3.5% or higher should go to the best employees. It is too expensive to pay all employees the premium salaries needed to attract and retain the best employees.
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www.fcta.org -- 2/20/2016