The Washington Post reports, although our real estate taxes will decrease, this is not necessarily good news. Our home values have dropped an average of 30% and apparently we should not expect a recovery to begin until 2013. What I am wondering is where are all these savings that Chairman Stewart promised us? He has put our county through hell and what does he have to show for it? Where
‘s the beef? Not just, gee, Greg tells me his neighborhood looks less Latino, but real concrete factual budgetary numbers! If he uses the drop in ESOL as his basis, well, then, I want him to explain where these families lived? Is the exodus of ESOL contributing to our astronomical foreclosure rates? The 11 million we wasted on the anti illegal immigration resolution should would have come in handy right about now, especially considering, it accounts for almost HALF of our budget shortfall. But hey, who cares about people having to pay for their own ambulance ride or county employees being laid off.

Prince William County residents will probably see a decrease in their property tax bills next year.
The Board of County Supervisors agreed at its budget retreat last week that it wanted county staff members to prepare a budget with a tax rate of $1.13 per $100 of assessed value. That would be an increase from the current 97-cent rate, but because home values have decreased so sharply, the average homeowner’s bill would still fall 18 percent.

The rate may go lower but cannot go higher if the board agrees to the budget proposal, as expected, at its next meeting Nov. 18.

“It’s not terribly realistic to expect homeowners to pay more in their tax bill with the degree of economic uncertainty we are facing,” County Executive Craig S. Gerhart said.

Even at the $1.13 tax rate, the county would have to cut $26 million from school and county spending to close an anticipated $190 million gap in the coming budget year.

Although home sales have surged in Prince William, it faces hard economic times because home values have decreased 30 percent in the past year. The county projects that the housing market won’t recover until 2013.

“Prince William County has lost more value at a faster pace than the rest of Northern Virginia,” said Christopher E. Martino, the county’s finance director. “We are going to overcorrect before we come back up and stabilize.”

32 Thoughts to “Real Estate Tax to decrease for PWC, but 26 million must be cut from Budget”

  1. ISO Decency

    Why don’t the BOCS just set the tax rate @$1.50 and fall back.

    Local property taxes are deductible on the federal form. I would rather have services in my county.

    I believe the housing market will correct before 2013.

  2. pwc insider

    Corey’s begging that they don’t touch the 287g and the criminal alien unit. Get off your knees, man.

    Well, maybe Wally wants him to stay there but that’s between the two of them.

  3. freedom

    …and it won’t be difficult to find $26M in wasteful spending within PWC…at least, if Craig Gerhart will get each of the agencies to actually define their spending habits instead of closeting the high salaries and unnecessary social services for the non-contributors.

  4. pip squeak

    Curious here. What social services is the county paying for that are being used by the non-contributors.

    1. Who are the non-contributors?
    2. Why would someone contributing be in need of social services?
    3. Didnt Mr. Gerhart ask the agencies to shave their budgets by 30%, 20% and 10% for initial inspection?
    4. Some spending might have to be cut that isnt considered wasteful. Does freedom accept that what might be wasteful to me, might not be wasteful to him?

  5. Do y’all remember this guy?

    He warned that something like this would happen, although not in such specific terms as a foreclosure disaster.

    Because the crisis is tied to homes, we can exactly measure the impact it has had on the county. We can trace the damage from the house value, that effect everyone, to the taxes being collected.

    The foreclosure crisis provides us with excellent metrics to illuminate the very real financial cost of bigotry.

    I hope George Mason or some other organization continue to take the initiative to fully explore and map out these metrics through a financial study. There is valuable data to mine here for years, perhaps decades, to come. Americans are very money conscious. When they see the numbers in black and white, they tend to become more amenable to quality-of-life solutions like what Sharon Pandak was proposing. Relying on people’s good will sometimes simply isn’t enough in an election season.

  6. Moon-howler

    Mackie, Who is that guy? Does he have a name and do we know who he is?

  7. NotGregLetiecq

    There were many people saying the same thing at the time, Mackie and Moon-Howler. But at the time the economy was not issue number one. “Immigration” was issue number one. People like Mr. Duecaster, Mr. Letiecq, Mr. Stewart, and Lou Dobbs were convincing Americans not just in PWC that the number one priority should be to “stop the invasion.”

    If the economy had been issue number one in 2007, I have a feeling this would not have happened to us. We had the misfortune of having an election in 2007, and thus being the guinea pig. But then again, the rest of Virginia also had an election. Why were we the ones to implement FAIR’s resolution?

  8. Alanna

    Why were we the ones? I suspect it was because Letiecq & Duecaster reached out to Federation for American Immigration Reform and enlisted the help of Immigration Reform Law Institute. It seems like it was the ‘perfect storm’, the timing with the elections, the fevered pitch of the hateful rhetoric was just reaching its crescendo, peoples home prices were just beginning to fall and a scapegoat was needed, and then the usefulness of the labor too was coming to an end.

  9. Wendy

    Simply by looking at the annual fiscal plan it is clear to see that agencies expenditures are people not items. Sure have everyone cancel their conferences, the total county wide is probably under $1million of $469million. Now what?

    I thought Mr. Stewart was not going to ‘raise taxes to address this issue’? Is he finally figuring out the difference between the bill and the tax rate? Sure was painful to watch him learn at our expense.

    NGL – nowhere did I see illegal immigration as a higher priority than Economy, Environment, Health Insurance and or Education.

  10. Wendy

    FAIR was probably only too happy to find someone with a direct feed to locally elected officials. How often does that happen do you think? The dynamic duo’s anger and racism eagerly accepted by elected officials limited them to a single agenda which precludes watching the horizon for other ‘storms’.

    Our elected leaders saw an easy way to have votes delivered to them without doing much. Look how long it took Stirrup to realize that people in Sudley/Westgate with property issues were really his consituants. Did he think they were ALL illegal??? Did he care until it became widely known that his constituants were calling John Jenkins for help?

    It’s about time we in PWC rolled up our sleeves, looked around locally and attempt to address a MULTITUDE of issues here in our community.

    Although, I can’t resist adding that since S&S have told anyone with a mike that will listen to them what it costs PWC it sure would be nice of them to now pony up that savings. Looks like we could use it to keep the 287(g) in place. Hey, how about a fee supported program???!!! We use the savings generated by THE RULE OF LAW to pay for the RULE OF LAW.

  11. Yes, it was bad timing for us but now we have the hard financial numbers to annihilate FAIR’s arguments. We’ve been given a gold mine here. It’s too late for our county but not for the rest of the country. Perhaps we were chosen for a reason.

  12. M-H,

    I wish I knew that guy’s name. It would be great to hear him discuss at length the parallels between the racial strife of the 50s and that of today.

  13. There is an awesome documentary on the natural geographic channel called ‘Inside Al Queda’ that is on right now.

  14. Alanna

    Thanks Mackie. And thanks for posting that link to the youtube video.

  15. Moon-howler

    Some of our supervisors were at the Homestead this past weekend–Annual Virginia Association of Counties Conference. Perhaps ours will pick up some creative ideas from other people in a similar boat.

  16. FormerCoMEmployee

    IMHO to compare the differences of opinion concerning ILLEGAL immigration today, and I add the word illegal in front of immigration for a reason, to what happened to the black race in the 50’s, 60’s and into the 70’s is a shame. The two are not compareable and for someone to get up in front of the BOCS and compare the two makes a mockery of one of the saddest times in this country’s history. While I do not agree with Greg’s words and how he goes about trying to meet his objectives, I do believe in the idea. This country needs to wake up and seal the border and send every illegal home until they immigrate the right way. There is only so much food, water, space and other natural resources and we need to be smart concerning immigration. It is a shame so many people on here seem to accept this man’s words as such a great speech in front of the BOCS when in fact he made an a$$ of himself, of course IMHO

  17. Moon-howler


    Why do you feel he made an ass of himself?

    How do you propose to get every ‘illegal’ to go home?

    How do we seal such a large border?

    I don’t disagree that we need to preserve our country’s resources.

    Have you read the post articles about how immigration was being handled? No wonder things are such a mess.


  18. SecondAlamo

    Hey, if we had concentrated on the economy instead of illegal immigration we would have solved two problems at once. First we would have stopped the practice of allowing undocumented people to obtain mortgages. After all, they could just walk away and leave the bank with the loan, no recourse. Wait, that’s what happened, didn’t it. Most people I’ve talked to have said that the homes they know of foreclosing in their neighborhood had people of foreign birth or multiple families living in them. Ring a bell?

  19. Juturna

    SA I think many people said the same thing. Use the laws we have – you don’t have to target an entire ethnic group. Further, resolving the systemic problem of illegal immigration should not be funded with local dollars.

  20. Elena

    Yes, our housing crisis is the all the fault of illegals and people who clearly must not be “american”. THAT is ridiculous SA. It must make life easy for you to not have to just scapegoat people as opposed to look at the broader problems that require complicated solutions. I typed out an example yesterday of a regular old “american” family who’s 800,000 dollar house went into forclosure. My friend who is a real estate agent was trying to convince homeowners to rent to this family. In the meantime, the wife is charging up the credit cards knowing they are going to file bankruptcy. Hmmm, does this example throw a wrench into your hypothesis.

  21. Chris

    I see many foreclosures in PWC the course of a work day. I can tell you ALL sorts of last names are getting foreclosed on. Not all foreclosures are due to ARM’s either, I might add. People of all walks of life(and various countries of origin) can run into problems. People get ill, or a family member may become ill, loss of a spouse, loss of job, reduction of hours, custody battles, and divorce; all of things can effect your pocket book and possibly put you in a foreclosure situation. I could show examples of foreclosures with all types of last names and in all types of neighborhoods(even the gated communities have some foreclosure properties too).

  22. Moon-howler

    SA, I would have been backing you up if you hadn’t been so all inclusive. I do think that the immigrant community and minorities were taken advantage of and were sold homes they simply didn’t have the income to support.

    Let’s face it, buying a house is a huge proposition and even the most educated of us might not understand all the fine print. Many folks got flummoxed.

    Additionally, as Chris has said, there are many faces to foreclosure and many a reason behind each face.

  23. ShellyB

    The man was only commenting on the hare filled environment we had during that time. With one single race being the focus of all the rhetoric, it is not surprising that we reminded him of the 50’s, when similar demographic changes led to similar sentiments.

  24. Leila

    Credit should be given where credit is due, and so I have something nice to say about Corey Stewart. No really.

    Reading the Washington Post this morning I was surprised to see him out front on what I think is the progressive practice of the “slug lines.” Since I live in Arlington and have a short commute, I’ve never been a slug (sluggish yes, but that’s another matter). However, I have seen these lines from the vantage point of a Metro bus and fully support this informal practice that helps both traffic congestion and the environment. I also like the fact that the solution comes from below.

    I wonder why Mr. Stewart cannot be equally sensible about other issues.

  25. Cat Scratch Fever

    Leila said..”I wonder why Mr. Stewart cannot be equally sensible about other issues.”

    Mr. Stewart benefits directly/personally by the “slug lines”, and therefore he’s sensible on the issue. I guess his sensibility is based on how he benefits, and not all of the residents he’s supposed to represent.

  26. Picayune

    Opportunism knocks again. When it knocks, Corey opens the door.

  27. Leila

    Ok. My apologies. That was really embarrassing. Thank you for the clarification Cat Scratch and I guess you are right Picayune. I must have read right over the Stewart is a frequent slugger line. Serves me right for trying to skim the story while crushed on the rush hour bus this morning. I should have reread before posting 🙁

    But I guess I am curious whether people disagree that the practice of the slug lines is beneficial apart from Stewart’s self-interest. They seem so, but then I only take public transport (and pay for it).

    I wonder if CS offers the rides or takes them. Do you suppose he bitches about Anti with his regulars?

    So does this mean that the only way to get Stewart to do the right thing is to have it benefit him personally?

  28. Cat Scratch Fever

    No need for apology. I like to find some good in all, and perhaps you were doing just that.

    My comments on his benefits were a big GUESS. I was being “catty” naturally.
    I think he does the right thing from time to time. Of course he’s in the “driver’s seat”. I read this in article sometime last year in the WaPo maybe.

    Do you suppose he bitches about Anti with his regulars?
    Too funny!

  29. FormerCoMEmployee

    Moon-howler, I didn’t make any suggestions because that wasn’t the point of my post. Maybe if you take the time to read before you start typing you might understand. I have no problem with anybody’s opinion. Remeber the old saying “Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one”,. My point was to compare what is happening in todays world with the immigration debate to what happened in the 50’s is just plain stupid. I do not see any hispanics being hung from trees and being burned out of their homes. And don’t you dare compare the loss of their homes because they took out loans for more than they could handle to what happened to blacks. That is my opinion and the man should be set straight instead of being cast as a hero for his idiotic speech. But that is the problem with people on both sides of this issue, you are short sighted and can only see your side as being right. I believe there is a middle ground somewhere that can be worked out between people who can sit down across from each other and discuss them with each other.

  30. Lucky Duck

    Slugging seems to be very effective and I can’t see any harm in the practice. The participants have their own code, they police themselves and they take vehicls off the road. Government should encourage them and stay out of their way.

  31. ShellyB

    In case anyone was wondering I meant “hate” filled environment, not “hare” filled. E-gads!

  32. Moon-howler

    FormerCoMEmployee, what on earth set you off? I asked you a couple of questions based on your comments.

    Show me one place where I criticized you or took issue with your comments. You can’t because it didn’t happen. I wanted you to expand on your comments. Now I don’t care because you have crossed over the rudeness line.

    I am afraid you are listening to gossip rather than reading carefully. Too bad. I have heard some nice things about you. I must have been lied to. You owe me an apology.

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