It took Prince William County Supervisors more than four hours Tuesday to settle on a fiscal 2019 budget that includes a 1 percent increase to the county’s fire levy rate and no change to the real estate tax rate of $1.125 per $100 of assessed value.
The $3.1 billion budget includes approximately $578.8 million to fully fund the county’s public schools, more than $360 million in public-safety needs and funding for an adult detention center.
As property values increase, however, the rates are expected to raise tax bills on average by around $132 next year.
The fire levy was adopted at 0.08, up from 0.0792 per $100 of assessed value. It amounts to an average levy bill increase of 4.1 percent while eliminating five shift supervisors. The board vote was 5-3, with Supervisors Pete Candland, R-Gainesville; Frank Principi, D-Woodbridge; and its Republican Chairman At-Large Corey Stewart casting the dissenting votes.
The vote on the levy followed disagreement over the levy rate and whether or not to wait on career and volunteer fire staff to come to a consensus on recommendations for its staffing plan…
…Also at the meeting, the supervisors:
- learned that the county has been given a AAA bond rating.
- unanimously confirmed its commitment to implement phase two of its public safety retention and recruitment study for career firefighters as part of the Fiscal 2020 budget. The study includes a potential 56-hour work week.
- approved Fiscal 2018 contingency funds for a Neabsco Creek dredging ($750,000) based on it being too shallow and Harbor Drive Park projects ($700,000).