Budget Questions and Responses

During the budget development process, staff takes note of the questions asked by Board members and provides written responses to questions for which responses were not readily available at the time the questions were asked.

Below is the list of the questions received to date.  Please click here for the complete file (file size: 154KB) containing the Board questions and responses.

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BOARD QUESTIONS

 

1

What is the estimate of the revenue that would be lost if the County were to exempt the first $999,999 in gross receipts from taxation for those businesses meeting the $1 million threshold?
Response

2

Why is the professional category for Business License taxed at a higher rate than other categories?  How much revenue is generated from the professional category?

Response

3

The Superintendent’s budget proposal includes implementation of the Classification Date Parity for non-teachers and implementation of the Range Date Parity for teachers.  The cost of this implementation is $6.8 million.  For purposes of comparison to the County’s implementation, please provide the cost estimate if the implementation were to match the County’s implementation.  Further, please confirm that the cost of the 60 new positions recommended is $3.6 million.

Response

4  In follow-up to the response to Question 2:  How much revenue is generated from each category of Business License?  What does each penny on each category of Business License generate?    
5 Is it possible to eliminate any category of Business License tax while not eliminating any/all others?   
6 What would it cost to include the dollar bill graphic with tax bills?  
 7 What is driving the increase in the jail use?  Does the increase necessarily mean an increase in the crime rate?  What are the crimes?  How can we reduce this number?  
 8 Explain why the right turn lane from Lansdowne onto Rt. 2 is in the CIP.  Isn’t this intersection in the city?  Can FAMPO fund this project with regional funds?   
 9 What is the change in on-going funding to the Schools from FY 2017 to FY 2018 and from FY 2018 to FY 2019?  How does that compare to enrollment changes during those years?  Response 
 10 Clarify what the funding gap is for the Schools.   
 11 Of the 60 new positions included in the School Board’s proposed budget, please identify those that are mandated and those that are required to meet requirements/standards.  Are any of the 60 not associated with mandates or meeting requirements/standards?   
12  Please provide the notes from the School Board’s PowerPoint presentation to the Board.   
13  Regarding slide 40 of the School Board’s presentation, please identify what the other 14 positions are.   
14  Given the number of students in other programs during the day, is Massaponax High School over capacity or not?   
15  Given the expansion at Courtland and the potential upcoming discussions of revisions to attendance boundaries, when is Schools’ staff thinking a new high school is likely to be needed?  Other schools?   
16  Provide a cost comparison of County and Schools health insurance benefits.  What is the difference in health insurance plans and costs?  Is either entity covering retirees that can be covered through Medicare?   
17  Provide a list of all requests from County departments that were not included in the Recommended Budget.  Response 
18  Regarding slide 24 of the School Board’s presentation, is it representative of the most currently available data?   
19  What is the cost to provide the line of duty tax relief for public safety employees?   
20  Fire/Rescue has asked for 6 additional positions to provide ALS staffing at Company 1.  With the staffing plan now revised to include ALS to begin at Co. 1, 4 and 8 in March, how many positions are still needed?   
21  What is included in the equipment for $67,455 on page 12 of the summarized version of the budget document for the Sheriff’s Office, Fire & Rescue, and Parks & Recreation?   
22  Is there an option to get funding from the State for the Social Services building?   
23  What is the additional scope of work on the animal shelter at a $1 million dollar cost?  Also why is there a $2 million dollar cost increase in the project?   
24  To where are the Marshall Center training room and network being relocated?  Please explain the related cost.   
25  Page 24 of the summarized version of the budget document shows an increase on a janitorial service contract of $117,000 and that it will be partially offset by a reduction in part time funding. Does this mean we are eliminating a part time position?   
26  Page 53 of the summarized version of the budget document mentions mussel farming.  Please provide details of this operation.   
27  On page 61 of the summarized version of the budget document, the interest on investments for FY 2017 was $97,006, FY 2018 Amended was $70,000, and FY 2019 Recommended is $75,000. Why the decrease?   
28 On page 85 of the summarized version of the budget document, $4,000 is in the budget for the Fredericksburg SPCA.  We have a Spotsylvania SPCA. Why are we giving money to another SPCA?   
29  Page 89 of the summarized version of the budget document has a commercial/residential plans reviewer for public safety position.  What is the justification for this position?  Doesn’t the Fire Marshal handle public safety plan review?   
30  Could we fully fund the Social Service building with surplus funds from last year’s budget?   
31 What improvements are happening this budget cycle as far as the upstairs bathrooms at the Marshall Center?    
32 Page 113 of the summarized version of the budget document lists a $50,000 allotment for paving convenience sites.  Is there a convenience site that needs immediate paving?    
33  Page 114 of the summarized version of the budget document lists $52,987 in the FY 2018 budget for Belmont Passive Park.  Was this money spent? If so, what was it spent on?    
34  Page 114 of the summarized version of the budget document lists $567,248 to upgrade the Marshall Center auditorium.  Is this going to be done? When?   
35 What heavy equipment are we replacing as indicated on page 119 of the summarized version of the budget document?  Is it an immediate need?   
36  Please explain what the Other Bonds (lease revenue) in FY 2021 for $3.6 million is on page 120 of the summarized version of the budget document.   
37  How much revenue is gained by rounding up the equalization real estate tax rate to 82 cents?   
38  The 2/13/18 PowerPoint listed $8 million from the available fund balance for a Social Services building but the budget itself calls for $1.2 million to be spent in FY 2019.  Does the remainder stay in fund balance during FY 2019? What happens with the rest of the excess fund balance in the County Administrator's budget?   
39  Do we have authority under the bond referendum to borrow in FY 2020 and beyond for more space for Social Services?