Great Falls Letter: Cutting Costs Instead of Raising Taxes

Great Falls Letter: Cutting Costs Instead of Raising Taxes

Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

I am writing in response to the MCA’s recent decision to support the Meal’s Tax referendum and similar measures across Fairfax County.

When Fairfax County school officials and the School Board chose not to implement any cost reductions proposed by the public task force convened by Superintendent Garza they failed to meet their fiduciary

responsibility as stewards of public resources. If they can’t find a way to first cut costs and streamline operations before asking for more, then why should taxpayers be forced to do so? Purportedly, the school

system is to receive 70 percent of the meals taxes collected (approx. $70M annually). Recall it was the goal of the task force to reduce expenses by $75M. The task force wasted countless time and effort that could have been better spent elsewhere. We’d be fools to vote for this new tax following such a costly charade.

In the resolution, the MCA asked for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors to find and eliminate inefficiencies instead of raising the real estate tax rate. Are you kidding me (see above)? Should the referendum pass, I do believe that the Board of Supervisors will temporarily hold the line on real estate tax rate increases.

Remarkably, however, we will see assessments go up immediately. Watch closely. It’s simple math and nobody should be fooled by this.

If we citizens keep voting to increase our own taxes, the Board of Supervisors and School Board will have no incentive to actually find ways to more effectively manage expenses. Maybe it’s time for a ballot referendum to stop any tax rate and spending increases until the County gets the message to cut costs.

Ethel Pascal

Great Falls