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County Manager Proposes $11.1 Million in Possible Cuts

The online ARLnow.com local news site reported yesterday that "Arlington County Manager Mark Schwartz has proposed a series of budget cuts to halve his proposed two cent tax increase to one cent."

ARLnow.com went on to explain:

"The cuts to Schwartz’s proposed budget total $11.1 million and include everything from a multi-million dollar reduction in school funding to a reduction of hours at the Glencarlyn library and the elimination of a management intern position in the parks department.

"The Arlington County Board advertised Schwartz’s recommended two cent tax rate increase but also asked him to recommend some budget cuts, as an option to consider.

“Putting together budget reduction options is always difficult, particularly given the growing demands and potential impacts on our community,” Schwartz said in a statement. “The package makes no change to the additional resources committed to Metro. Since we presented our Proposed Budget on Feb. 25, jurisdictions are facing a Metro funding deficit that may grow even larger.”

"Under the advertisement, the Board cannot raise the property tax rate more than two cents for every $100 in assessed value this year. (At last month’s meeting, Board members Libby Garvey and Christian Dorsey proposed, unsuccessfully, setting the advertised rate three cents higher than the current $0.991 for every $100.)"

The story quoted from this Arlington County press release, which included the following six bullet points:

  • Board asked for reduction options equal to one penny on the tax rate
  • Cuts would be shared by APS
  • Options to be considered during March budget work sessions
  • Board has advertised tax rate increase up to two cents over CY 2016 rate
  • Public can weigh-in at two March public hearings; online feedback form
  • Board to adopt final FY 2018 Budget, tax rates and fees April 22, 2017

The press release included two additonal important points. First, they pointed out the upcoming budget and tax hearings on Tuesday, March 28 and Thursday, March 30. For more information, visit the "Speaking at Budget and Tax Rate Public Hearings" webpage. Second, the press release reminds taxpayers that County Board work sessions with the County Manager are broadcast live on ATV, the County’s cable channel, (Comcast 25 & 74 and Verizon FiOS 39 & 40), and live-streamed on the County website." Meetings are open to the public, but the Board doesn't take testimony.

Growls readers are encouraged to voice their concerns about the Manager's proposed FY 2018 budget to members of the Arlington County Board. Just click-on the following link to send the Board a message:

  • Call the County Board office at (703) 228-3130.

And tell them ACTA sent you.

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