Advertized tax rate set at $1.195, increase of 3.5%
After taking several votes that ended up in a 4-4 tie, the Board of County Supervisors finally settled on an advertised tax rate of $1.195 which will amount to an average increase of 3.5%. This rate might go lower, it just cannot go any higher. The supervisors who supported the higher tax rate that passed were Caddigan, Nohe, Principi, May, and Jenkins. Stewart, Covington, and Candland voted against this rate.
Good for Caddigan, Nohe, Principi, May, and Jenkins to give us enough wiggle room to look at all scenarios. Teachers need a raise, a step increase and smaller class sizes. More school resource officers are needed. We need more police officers. Basically, if you talk to county employees, you will hear that they often do the work of 2 people. There doesn’t seem to be enough money to update IT products that would make the job of running a county easier.
Pete Candland gave an interesting presentation that called for increased money for teachers, more police officers and an investment in parks. What he didn’t explain to my satisfaction was where the money was coming from. He vaguely referenced FTE and carry over funds but I am not sure how that would work. It sounds like the county needs to fill those empty positions. Additionally, the increased money for teachers was not an across the board raise or step increase. Instead it was merit pay.
Merit pay is the boogeyman for educators. How do we determine who the best teachers are? Let the principal decide? Go by test scores? I guess the teacher who take on the most challenging students can not count on that money. It sounds like a whole lot of room for brown-nosing. Teachers continually reject merit pay because it only serves a few. There is just no way to evaluate most teachers fairly.
Smaller class sizes can be formed only one way, hiring or assigning more teachers to individual schools. That takes money. The average teacher salary is $60,000.
Are people in Prince William County really suffering under the weight of a bad economy? The unemployment rate in the region, including PWC, is much lower than the national average. Why is there this need to find a lower tax rate? For ideology sake? How did the department’s in need of additional employees respond to the cutting of those FTE’s? How did they respond to a budget cut? What would be sacrificed for a flat tax rate?
Unfortunately, local bloggers have decided to blast Caddigan, Nohe, Principi, May, and Jenkins as tax and spend liberals. PUH-LEEZ. I am so tired of sound bites. They most certainly are not tax and spend liberals, whatever that is. They were elected to run the county based on what the people want and need. Obviously people want their children to go to decent schools and they want reliable public safety. That is hardly being a [best girlie voice] A LIBERAL. Most of us want decent services and don’t want to live on the cheap.
The Sheriff continues to put Candland on a pedestal where he can do not wrong. It’s a shame to turn a nice guy into a hated figure by turning him into “Peter Perfect” while at the same time maligning those who disagree with his policy proposals. Let’s listen to Candland’s opinions and evaluate them as to how they will fly in PWC. Seems fair to me. We don’t need to lift him up by denigrating all the other supervisors. Pete is perfectly capable of selling his own ideas without the choir coming along and trying to bully the rest of us into going along with what appears to be a love-fest for Pete.
The blatant adoration actually demeans what Pete is trying to say and do.