Board of Supervisors Budget Questions & 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.

View each question and its answer in the table, or view all of the Board questions and responses (PDF).

Question Number

Board Questions
Response Document
1Provide a list of all budget requests that are not included in the Recommended BudgetResponse
2For each of the past five years, what has been the original gap in the Schools’ budget, the amount the Recommended Budget has resolved, the amount resolved by the County’s adopted transfer, and the gap subsequently remaining.Response
3What are the details of the basis for the estimated increase for student enrollment? Specifically, what is the basis for the statement on page 4 of the Schools’ CIP: “Despite the fact that there were actually 140 fewer students enrolled in the school division on October 1, 2018 than the preceding school year at that time, we are anticipating serving an additional 1,066+ students in the next three years.” Does the estimate factor in the decrease in the birth rate between 2013 and 2018?Response
4What paths are available to students at the Tech Center to make them job-ready upon graduation?Response
5What are the retention rates for school staff by type (teacher, administration, bus driver, nurse, etc.)? Provide information as to which employees (position titles) are leaving and their reasons for leaving.Response

Provide salary and total compensation comparisons for bachelors and advanced degrees/certifications for Spotsylvania area and competing localities. How does the average teacher salary in Spotsylvania compare to those of surrounding jurisdictions and other competing jurisdictions? Please also include the following for each comparator locality provided in the salary comparisons:

  • School population
  • Total operational budget - equivalent of our total School Operating Fund - without debt service
  • Total debt service budget
Funding received from local, State, and Federal for purposes of funding the operational budget to include debt service
7If instead of the 149 proposed new positions the School Board were adding 30 FTEs consistent with last year’s plan and were including the 5% pay raise as currently proposed, what would the School Board’s budget look like? By how much would the gap close?Response
8Can we change how we handle CIP/debt service budgeting for the Schools to make it clearer each year how much is operating and how much is CIP/debt service?Response
9In regard to budget items requested but not included in the Recommended Budget, please help us understand why the public safety overtime and Utilities chemical treatment was not funded as requested. What is the consequence of not funding these?Response
10What are the specifics of the YMCA land deal with the County?Response
11Please provide information as to which General Fund revenues are matched to new initiatives and/or one-time expenditures in the Recommended Budget.Response
12How do Spotsylvania’s SOL scores rank statewide? How do they compare with the scores of surrounding jurisdictions?Response
13The Schools’ FY 2018 carryover was $3.9 million which was noted as being primarily due to lapse funding from turnover of staff.  How has normal lapse and turnover been factored into the School Board’s FY 2020 Budget?  Specifically, has the projected staffing cost been appropriately reduced to realistically anticipate savings due to turnover?
14Does the Schools’ FY 2020 Budget fund the 149 added positions for the full year?Response
15If the Schools added the 149 new positions proposed, when would each of those positions be hired and for what portion of FY 2020 would each of those positions be paid?Response
16Please provide a listing of the localities that Spotsylvania competes with for school staffing. For each competitor, please provide a) what compensation changes they are proposing in FY 2020 and b) what compensation changes they adopted in FY 2019. Please show the deltas between the comparators and Spotsylvania’s adopted 4% adjustment in FY 2019 and between the comparators and Spotsylvania’s proposed 5% adjustment for FY 2020.Response
17The Schools indicated last year that implementation of the Evergreen recommendations was too expensive. Evergreen’s most expensive option was $7.1 million without benefits. If we assume an average 30% benefit rate, the cost is $9.1 million. In lieu of going forward with the Evergreen option, the Schools gave 4% across the board (except administrators) in FY 2019 at a cost of $6.9 million, and are proposing a 5% increase plus year 2 in FY 2020 at a cost of $9.6 million. So, what was done in FY 2019 plus what is proposed for FY 2020 would total $16.5 million. But, as noted, the Evergreen recommendations were considered too expensive at $9.1 million? Please explain.Response
18Slide 6 of the County Administrator’s Recommended Budget presentation show full year costs for FF/Medics, DSS, and SROs. Are the amounts shown the total FY 2020 costs or are they the increased costs over the part-year expenses from FY 2019? Slide 7 shows full-year funding for ½ year FY 2019 positions. Is there overlap here or are these different positions from those on slide 6?Response
19Actual enrollment has been essentially flat or even declining. The number of special needs students, ESL students, and economically disadvantaged students is growing. Where then are the students going who don’t require special services, are English-speaking, and are financially stable?Response
20Why is Spotsylvania County being asked to provide capital funding to Germanna for the new Allied Health Campus to be constructed in Orange County?Response
21Verify the YMCA $200K capital request is for one year only. How many total memberships do they have? How many discounted and/or free memberships have they provided? What are the requirements for getting discounted and/or free memberships? What other funding sources are being used for the construction project? What special programs are offered at the Spotsylvania location, and what is the participation in each?Response
22In follow-up to the response received to Question 18, regarding the positions not included in the FY 2019 Budget, what portion of the annual costs was needed in FY 2019? How much did those departments absorb in their FY 2019 budgets? In a budget which is not supposed to have new initiatives, why can’t those departments absorb the same share of the costs they did in FY 2019?Response
23Provide more details on the State’s proposed 5% salary increase including the local match requirement.Response
24Provide the costs including transportation costs of the Future Teachers Academy program. Clarify if the School Board is required to approve the curriculum per policy.Response
25Please answer Ms. Shelley’s question in reference to the difference between the projection of the FY 2020 local transfer to Schools included in the five-year forecast that was printed in the FY 2016 Budget and the local transfer included in the County Administrator’s FY 2020 Recommended Budget. What is the value of the forecast?


26Compare the County’s change in FTEs since FY 2009 to the County’s change in population since FY 2009. Please explain the increases in FTEs.Response
27What has been the Schools’ change in enrollment and FTEs since FY 2009? If possible, please provide by area of need.Response
28Please provide the end of year actual reserves since FY 2009Response
29Please provide a list of all vacant positions and how long they have been vacant.Response
30Please provide a list showing agency requests and recommended funding for regional agencies.Response
31Please provide a breakdown by category of the expenditure changes made to the FY 2019 Adopted Budget to arrive at the FY 2020 Recommended Budget.Response