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Proposed Fairfax County Budget: No New Services, Property Tax Rate Remains Steady

Fairfax County Public Schools will received less than requested.

The Fairfax County chief executive Tuesday morning proposed a $6.7 billion budget that provides taxpayers with no new services, gives the schools less than they requested and the property tax — the county's chief source of money — remains unchanged.

However, the average homeowner will pay nearly $34 a year more because the value of homes has increased.

County Executive Anthony H. Griffin's proposed budget kicks off the county's annual budget season. The Board of Supervisors also got first glimpse of the County's proposed 2013 budget when County Executive Anthony Griffin presented it this morning. The supervisors will approve a budget the end of April.

Now citizens get a chance to comment in a series of public meetings scheduled for March and April.

Here are the highlights of the proposed county budget:

Total: The proposed Fairfax County budget totals $6.7 billion. Of that amount, $3.52 billion is the general fund. The remainder are specialized funds not paid for through general tax dollars.

Property tax rate: Remains at $1.07 per $100 of assessed value. But the average homeowner will pay nearly $34 more because last year the mean assessed value of a home was $445,533, and in the coming year it will rise to $448,696. Real estate taxes contribute nearly 61 percent to the county's coffers.

The county executive has proposed advertising a property tax rate of $1.09 per $100 of assessed value to give supervisors wiggle room if they want to increase the proposed budget amounts.

Pay increase for employes: The proposed budget calls for a 2.18 percent cost of living salary increase for county employes which will cost $22.3 millionThe proposed budget also includes nearly $20 million to finance a full-year of the 2 percent cost of living increase that county employes received effective Sept. 24, 2011.

Schools: The recommended transfer to Fairfax County Public Schools  is $1.68 billion, an increase of 4.5 percent over FY 2012.  However, the transfer request approved by the Fairfax County School Board, is $1.75 billion, an increase of $135.8 million, or 8.4 percent over the FY 2012. The county spends more than half of its general fund on the county's neary 181,000 school children.

In summary, Griffin said, “We haven’t been able to restore anything we have cut in the past three years.”

Detailed budget information can be found here. 

Tomorrow call in for taxpayers: Chat online with the county executive about his proposed budget on Wednesday, Feb. 29, at 2 p.m. Submit questions now.

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