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2020-10-14 17:08 -- From: Vienna 22181 -- Subject: Information for voting on questions
I sent this to the League of Women's' Voters (https://www.lwv-fairfax.org/): I suggested adding to your "What's on the ballot" analysis an estimated impact on citizen and business taxes and the percent of population affected by the Ballot Questions. Perhaps nonpartisan groups like FCTA (http://www.adilindo.com/) could help. Right now there is insufficient information about the questions.

Response: In the September 2020 page of FCTA's Monthly Message, we recommended voting NO on all four County bond issues and gave reasons. FCTA has since created a sample ballot, but as a 'nonpartisan' group, FCTA cannot endorse any candidate. (We recommend going here for all the gory details.)
2020-08-04 16:57 -- From: Deb Maddrell, Clarks Crossing -- Subject: Deductible for FCPS medical insurance
The graphic on the front page of the site says taxes pay for zero-deductible insurance for FCPS employees. That doesn't seem to be the case per the current handbook. The handbook doesn't say what the deductibles are, though. Could you check on this and update? Thanks!

Response: FCPS offers 3 medical plans: Kaiser Permanente, Aetna Innovation Health, and CareFirst Blue Choice Advantage (all with deductible summaries on page 1). The Kaiser plan is a zero-deductible plan, while the other two have deductibles of $250 per individual and $500 per family. -- Arthur Purves, FCTA president on 8/5/2020
2020-03-29 23:50 -- From: Herndon -- Subject: FCPS giveaways of laptops and wireless routers
Why are FCPS Schools distributing laptops to MIddle School and Elementary school kids along with wireless routers that connect to internet and telling schools not to collect them or money for them if the students are on Free and reduced lunch. Middle schools distributed laptops last Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday and some Middle Schools did not comply with fairfax county health codes and possibly spread Corona virus. The FCPS school board and Superintendent is responsible and should be fired for it. This is unnecessary as all students receive a No Mark grade for the 4th quarter. It has also been told that Free and reduced lunch students will not be charged or fined for library books. The taxpayer is on the hook. Contact your school board member https://www.fcps.edu/school-board
2019-12-06 16:18 -- From: FCTA Webmaster -- Subject: Second Amendment sanctuaries
WT Editorial: Some on the left are angry, if not apoplectic, that conservatives are turning the tables on them and co-opting one of their own tactics. If liberal "sanctuary" cities, counties and even states defiantly refuse to cooperate fully with federal immigration laws, then their objections should fall on deaf ears when other towns, cities and counties won't go along when liberal governors and Democrat-controlled legislatures enact strict gun-control measures.
2019-11-07 18:51 -- From: Fred in Herndon -- Subject: Gun laws
In a study that I did for Democrat Delegate Ken Plum, I found that gun murders are near an all-time low. In addition, states with a high Brady Index (i.e., with high gun restrictions) have more gun murders on average that states with a low Brady Index. Just because you feel that strict gun laws would reduce gun murders does not make it so. Look at the data.(Ken Plum subsequently has introduced HR 2, to ban private gun transfers.)
2019-07-20 10:08 -- From: David in Vienna -- Subject: 15 Reasons You Should Own A Gun
"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty teeth and keystone under independence..." -- George Washington
2019-01-26 18:41 -- From: robert in vienna -- Subject: gun safety laws
how many more massacres are going to happen before we adopt adequate gun laws in this country? I'm not against reasonable gun ownership, but it is not yet adequately restricted to assure public safety.
2019-01-26 18:37 -- From: robert in vienna -- Subject: climate change
climate change is a fact and the sooner we get off fossil fuels and adopt low carbon energy the better---our kids future depends on it.
2018-12-16 19:02 -- From: Frank in Lorton -- Subject: Dec 16th, 2018 Entry
I would like to thank the FCTA for all of their efforts. Your making a difference!
2017-10-28 08:48 -- From: Arthur in Mt Vernon -- Subject: Suggestions for name to write in: 44th District
Having noted that there is NO Republican candidate on the ballot for State Delegate in the 44th District (Fort Hunt and Mt Vernon), does anyone have any suggestions for a name to write in? {Serious question; not looking for joke answers) In the age of the Internet, especially in an off year, I wonder if a lot of people could get behind a particular write-in candidate, and perhaps make an impact. It's pretty sad that the Fairfax County Republican Committee seems to have written off this area.
2017-10-23 13:57 -- From: Andrew in Washington -- Subject: Horrible web design.
Please fix the web design by at least using updated web standards. We are in 2017 not 1990...

Webmaster's reply: Please be specific. Good web practice is to design compatible with both older and newer browsers. This means ignoring tableless design concepts. As long as your newest browser renders the page as intended, I've done my job. Otherwise, please send me an email and I'll investigate the problem.
2017-09-26 11:47 -- From: FCTA Webmaster -- Subject: Ditty for today
Hands up don't shoot / Knee down at games / The grownups are gone / And snowflakes reign!
2017-03-09 14:19 -- From: Bob in Fairfax -- Subject: Paving roads that aren't used
Today, Mar 9, 2017, Fairfax Co. is completely repaving a short road that is never used
and has never been used in years. If the county is starved for funds, why are they
spending our money on this? The road is a service road off of Chichester.
2016-01-06 12:19 -- From: Bill 22151 -- Subject: RE taxes up and prices down
equals maximum hate
2015-11-10 14:16 -- From: McLean, VA -- Subject: Real Estate Tax Relief
Real Estate Taxes

Regarding the rising taxes and fees in Fairfax County, it is impossible to understand why the Real Estate Tax relief has not changed along with the increase in taxes. Fairfax County has a tax relief program for those who are age 65 and older. The parameters have not changed, all while the taxes are always shooting up higher and higher.

The current tax relief parameters are as follows for those who reach age 65:

A gross Income of $52,000 or less results in 100% real estate tax relief. For gross incomes of $52,001-$62000, the relief is 50%. For $62,001 to $72,000 the relief is 25%. We have seen exorbitant tax increases all while new housing has been robust, and tear downs and rebuilds are all over the county, bringing in substantial additional tax revenue.

Why then, does not the tax relief parameters change along with the rise in taxes? The amount of Gross Income levels should be adjusted in some way to be tied to the amount of taxes that have already increased, and continue to increase. Those of us who have paid taxes here in Fairfax County for so many years are not being treated fairly with the tax relief parameters remaining constant for so many years.
2015-10-16 04:44 -- From: 0PnO2cc3bhT (Asia-Pacific) -- Subject: Zw0j9kvXy
This is an arltcie that makes you think "never thought of that!"
2015-10-09 12:04 -- From: Steve In Falls Church -- Subject: $5.5 Million In Tax Dollars to be spend on development
The Board of Supervisors is voting on Oct 20th on RZ 2014-MA-011/SE 2014-MA-013 which is a development in Bailey's Crossroads. The development will be putting the tax payers on the hook for $5.5 million according to an internal memo (below). Write the clerktothebos@fairfaxcounty.gov to express outrage and ask for a denial.

The applicant's proposal forces an impact to an off-site property in order to correct the angle.This will require the County to acquire a portion of a shopping center across Leesburg Pike from the applicant's property to achieve a better angled intersection. The applicant's proposal disregards the Comprehensive Plan's clear guidance that the improvement is to align Charles Street with Glen Forest Drive. Staff estimates that it will cost approximately $5.5 million in public funds to acquire the off-site land to realign Charles Street with Glen Forest Drive. The applicant has not offered to provide funding toward the construction of this improvement even as they have shifted the impact to an off-site property owner and the County.
2015-10-05 21:07 -- From: FCTA Webmaster -- Subject: Reply to 'Disgusted' RE Tax Waste
Sounds like you need to advise the Taxpayer Alliance on how best (in your opinion) we could help our readers understand specific waste issues you have witnessed. Your (perhaps anonymous) advice would be greatly appreciated. Feel free to come to our monthly meetings (usually first Tuesday) -- see 'About/Meetings' for time and location -- or contact me, FCTA's webmaster and a board member (email link at the bottom of our Home page).
2015-10-03 10:21 -- From: Disgusted in Fairfax -- Subject: Tax Waste
For years I have been employed by the county. I have seen tax payers money wasted by not utilizing the best talent or abusing circumstances to pad a departments budget. At this time I don't know the best route to fight the issues. I'm reaching out for advice to at least minimize the issue at hand. Be it legal or an internal fight does not matter.
2015-09-30 13:25 -- From: Don in FC -- Subject: Fairfax County is paying SEIU, AFSCME and other union to lobby the board
揑 believe this merits further investigation,?Herrity added. 揗y big concern is what are the controls and tracking procedures and what is considered appreciate activities.?br />
Additionally each of the 10 unions are allowed [be paid by the County to}lobby and other political activities. The county documents were first obtained by the Center on National Labor Policy through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2015/09/29/taxpayer-funded-union-work-appears-in-the-least-likely-place/
2015-03-23 19:15 -- From: Ricky in Centreville -- Subject: $$$$$$$$$$$$ wastefull spending by county general register agency must stop!!!!
I went to NCAA basketball party over weekend and someone at party who works in county said their department is working for general registers office (office does voting stuff) and they said the head of registers office is spending over $50,000 just too remmodel registers office and build walls and windows to make new offices. What is wrong with current office not good enough for register? Spend your own money to remoddel and you will not spend a dime if not taxpayers money!

People at party said general register was not very smart and that is wasting tens of thousands of tax dollars to learn how to be a manager and she makes $150000 and is not smart? What idiot hired the general register? Fire them now! General registers getting help to learn their job was in Washington Post but I missed it. And now register is wasting even more of our money for her ego! Why don't county leaders stop this waste of spending when it does nothing to help voters at all, and county made some other agency give up its cheap fax machine to save a few dollars? Save $50,000 Today! The county worker said people working at agency were not happy looking at waste of money so it is agency leader who is still not smart wastes our taxes on building new offices. Why? Why do county supervisors let register spend our money to make new offices and put in new windows to see out? The county worker said the general registers office is kind of a state agency but county pays for all people and costs of agency. Why?

Everyone must vote out supervisors in November if they let such waste of money happen and we taxpayers have to pay! Fire general register too! Today! Does FCTA know about this waste of tax money? Where is citizen outrage with mine? I work hard to support my family and no college or even a good job like general register. But I know register is wasting my hard earned dollars and I am mad!
2015-03-17 14:23 -- From: Alvin in Fairfax -- Subject: School calendar and budget impacts
In school year 2014/15, FCPS implemented a new school calendar with 180 school days or 990 instructional hours. This was in conjunction with eliminating half day Mondays for elementary schools and avoiding excessive snow make-up days. For many years, FCPS had a 183 day school calendar with 11 teacher workdays for a 194 day standard teacher contract. Since FCPS has adopted a 180 day calendar, why have 3 teacher workdays been added keeping the teacher contract at 194 days? What are the budget implications of keeping longer contracts for a shorter school year?
2015-02-21 11:32 -- From: FCTA Webmaster -- Subject: The Home Page
Tom, thanks for visiting the Fairfax County Taxpayers Alliance site.

I've been meaning to reshuffle our home page frames, as the annual Fx Co Spring real estate tax increases are now front and center. The frames are now adjusted accordingly.

When I set up our new site over a year ago, I realized that just dealing with Fx Co issues made the site pretty boring -- not just for our readers, but for me as webmaster. So I developed a drop-down menu that, while prioritizing Fx Co issues, also addressed areas outside of Fx Co (Virginia, National, World) but also issues I consider important to our readers that the MSM won't properly cover. I cover these in our Miscellaneous section (Health, Environment/Energy, Potpourri). As a result -- after Fx Co and Virginia issues -- FCTA's home page now features links to thoughtful "keepers" (For Reference) as well as "everything else" (General Interest) at the bottom of the page. (And our "Posts by Date" button allows readers to view all of our posted content in reverse chronological order.)

As for manmade Global Warming... I'm a scientist, and have been following this political issue since before Al Gore invented the internet. There's no more Global Warming today than there was Global Cooling in the 1970s. It's a political issue dreamed up by post-Soviet Lefties (the British call them "watermelons" -- green on the outside and red on the inside) to stifle energy production, free enterprise, and therefore human progress -- it's about gov't control! (Btw, that 97% "consensus" - 75 out of 77 scientists at some left-wing event many years ago. But as we know, real science is not based on consensus, but on facts.)

As for fiscal relevance, the current war on fossil fuels is not only misguided, but incredibly expensive to you the energy user, as well as destructive to the southwest Virginia coal industry. Watch as your rates go up in the next few years as we continue to needlessly penalize our energy producers.

The footer on our home page proclaims: "www.adilindo.com: Your alternative to Low-Information Media". We hope you will continue to visit our site and read some of the articles you now think you disagree with. And we do appreciate your feedback.
2015-02-20 09:56 -- From: Tom in Fairfax County -- Subject: The Home Page
I'm all for the Fairfax County Taxpayers Alliance.

But, you *need* to get the climate denier stuff off the website. This isn't a climate science denier web site, this is a site dedicated to Fairfax County fiscal responsibility. And, don't tell me the climate stuff has anything to do with being fiscally irresponsible.

Nearly every legitimate scientist agrees that the is climate change. Don't dumb down this site nor make it irrelevant by way of letting people dismiss is out of hand with the climate science denier propaganda.
2014-10-05 16:10 -- From: FCTA Webmaster -- Subject: Annual Luncheon timing
FCTA usually holds its luncheon on the first Saturday of October. Vienna and the Fairfax Co Gov't Center are also holding their 'Fall Festivals' at this time. Sorry if it offends.
2014-09-29 22:03 -- From: Mike in Springfield -- Subject: Annual Luncheon on Yom Kippur
I don't understand how your organization can schedule what is apparently a major event this coming Saturday, which is Yom Kippur.
2014-09-01 21:34 -- From: David in Vienna -- Subject: Runoff requirement in VA general elections?
In the current Virginia election for US Senator, once again Robert Sarvis (L) is joining Ed Gillespie (R) and Mark Warner (D) in a 3-way race. The Virginia governor's race was likely given to McAuliffe rather than Cuccinelli because Sarvis served as a "spoiler". (And the US Senate race in North Carolina seems similarly fated.)

Does anyone think that Virginia should require a runoff in such elections for major Virginia and US congressional elections, requiring either an outright majority on the first round or a 2-way runoff in a second round?
2014-03-19 20:43 -- From: BillTheThrill- 22151 -- Subject: households per parasite- good point
100k x school marm
2014-03-18 15:30 -- From: MaryAnn in Herndon -- Subject: County retirements
Two principals retired at $100,000 a year (common) requires 40, repeat 40 households to sustain (200,000 expense divided by $5000 real estate tax per house. And that is before one dollar is put in the classroom.
How long can that go on?
2014-03-14 11:31 -- From: BillTheThrill- 22151 -- Subject: town hall sentiment
Harrity meeting was easily 70/30 anti tax
COOK ! was about 60/40

tide turning on spenders
2014-03-08 13:26 -- From: Fred Costello, Herndon -- Subject: Tax rate
That tax rate includes storm water, which is being proposed at 0.0225 per $100, so, to keep the taxpayer burden constant, the quoted real-estate rate should be 1.037 per $100. The county seems to want 1.085 (not included storm water). That would be a 6.5% increase in real-estate taxes, as compared to a 2.1% increase in income. Why should the county get a bigger increase than the taxpayer.
2014-03-07 14:19 -- From: Fred in Herndon -- Subject: County budget
For the residential real-estate tax to increase no more than the 2.1% increase in household income, the tax rate must be $1.059 per $100 of assessed value.
2014-03-07 07:31 -- From: BillTheThrill- 22151 -- Subject: dulles rail- refi
so it's no longer an issue since the tolls will be financed w a loan?
2014-03-05 10:28 -- From: John in Burke -- Subject: Strategic Reform of the FY2015 Fairfax County Budget
Our (Fairfax County) recurring, and chronic budget formulation, development, and execution policies esp. wrt the County's School Board are indicative of predictable strategic, structural, and chronic misalignment problems caused by significantly differing expectations, and lack of joint budget integration team work in all component phases (e.g., budget pricing guidance; cost growth including pay raises, retirement contributions, and salaries; investment; program performance improvement; audit and efficiency savings applied; etc.)

Respective County and School Board annual budgets do not exhibit using coherent, consistent, and well-disciplined budget formulation guidance using strategic budget guidance, metrics, and analytics assessed continuously during budget formulation, development, and execution. No independent audit, internal review, and/or periodic strategic performance reviews are conducted jointly during budget formulation, development, execution. Unfortunately, these particular and wholly avoidable characteristics are symptomatic of confusion, strategic misalignment, creating needless 'churn' and chaos esp. during 'public' discussions and final annual budget development vetting. The County Executive and the Comptroller, overseen by the Board of Supervisors, should be the 'single' leadership authority responsible for all County budget phases and the subordinate School Board is responsible for budget representation, development, defense, and adherence to 'central' budget formulation guidance similar to all other County program managers.

Specifically, the current proposed County budget, makes it appear and implies, at least by one District Supervisor, that a 'downturn' in the commercial real estate market is significantly decreasing County tax revenues which Residential Homeowners must now also subsidize with their increased tax payments based on increased residential RE assessments and possibly additional RE tax rate 'handicaps' being considered. This particular issue requires timely explanation, clarification, and disclosure. Further, additional 'Other' residential real taxes such as Pest Investment, and Storm Water mitigation tax assessments are not widely discussed, publicized, or vetted in 憄ublic?budget discussions but constitute additional tax burdens on homeowners.

Adherence to a "cautious and deliberative approach" to budgeting, indeed goes well beyond forecasts for federal spending, the 'mired' national GDP explicitly reflected in business taxes, and other federal and state revenue sources, etc.

Budget Reform Imperatives:
-Fix misalignment through strategic planning, policy, and structural budget reforms to create a seamless 'end to end' integrated County annual budget process team directly superintended by the Chair of Board of Supervisors.;
-Public and School Board advocacy without antagonism and creation of unnecessary adverse relations between the County and School Board which only creates confusion, chaos, and dysfunction;
-Centralized 'top down' County budget accountability and leadership;
- Continuous, full, and complete transparency of County led budget process with Taxpayers.

The taxpayers, 'writ large', will ultimately expect all elected County Supervisors and School Board members, rather than appointed officials regardless of position held, to be held fully 'accountable and lead' in making these very difficult and constrained public budget decisions for the 'greatest good' as they determine it.
2014-03-05 00:17 -- From: Webmaster -- Subject: New FCTA blog available for general use
The site now allows a reader to submit a text comment, which will be reformatted as an HTML table row and placed at the top of the single global FCTA web log.

No knowledge of html formatting is required -- your monospaced plain-text will appear as it looks in this text box. You may use html for bolding, italics, or underscoring if you so desire.

There is no need to be politically correct, but please be courteous. I reserve the right to purge offensive comments from the log, and to disallow repeat offenders from logging their comments.