Funding Position Statements - 2010 Legislative Program
Fairfax County is being significantly impacted by the 2005 recommendations of the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC) with over 19,000 personnel from numerous Department of Defense (DOD) agencies and commands being moved into Fort Belvoir and the Engineer Proving Ground (EPG) in the County. As a result, Fairfax County is facing significant shortfalls in the capacity of current transportation and school infrastructure to support the additional military and civilian jobs.
While federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding is making possible the long-anticipated completion of the Fairfax County Parkway, overall federal assistance has been insufficient to ensure the appropriate increase in transportation capacity needed for such a large influx of personnel into an already congested area. The lack of federal assistance is compounded by cuts in state funding to the County’s secondary road program, adversely affecting projects that could improve the BRAC transportation impacts at Fort Belvoir and the Engineer Proving Grounds. The 2010 General Assembly is requested to provide state assistance to mitigate these significant effects.
(Reaffirms and revises previous position.)
Support funding initiatives that will advance research, surveillance, reporting, and diagnostics for Lyme disease. Cases of Lyme disease have been on the rise in Virginia, with over 800 cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2008.
Public Safety/Courts Funding
Public safety is a core service for the Commonwealth, as it is for localities. Protecting the Commonwealth’s residents and ensuring the successful operation of the justice system requires appropriate state funding for the state-local partnership, including sufficient state support for all stages—law enforcement, courts, and jails/corrections. To that end, Fairfax County supports adequate funding for the following:
Excess Court Fees – The 2010 GA should reverse the diversion of local
funding to the Commonwealth. During the 2009 General Assembly,
the 2008-2010 biennium budget was amended to change the state share of
excess court fees (paid to local courts for administrative expenses
associated with home sales, home refinancings, wills, and other
matters) from one-third to two-thirds – a funding loss that
disproportionately affected higher cost Northern Virginia
HB 599 – This critical funding, provided to localities with police
departments, must be maintained. Approximately 65 percent of all
Virginians currently depend on local police departments for public
safety services. This program strives to equalize state funding
between counties in which the sheriff provides law enforcement and
those cities, counties and towns with police departments.
(Reaffirms longstanding Board position.)
Jails – The Commonwealth should adequately compensate localities at a
level which is commensurate with the State’s responsibility for local
jail operations. A 2005 report by the Compensation Board stated
that only 20 percent of Fairfax County’s jail operations funding comes
from the state. Local governments in Virginia have historically
borne a disproportionate burden of supporting jail confinement costs,
as a result of significant underfunding by the Commonwealth.
State actions to address current state budget concerns should not
result in the transfer of state prisoners to local jails, which would
exacerbate the funding imbalance.
(Updates and reaffirms previous position.)
Courts – The Commonwealth should adequately fund Virginia’s courts, to
ensure a well-functioning judicial branch. The underfunding of
Virginia’s court system places additional burdens on localities.
In the case of magistrates, for example, low pay remains a serious
statewide problem, leading to a high turnover rate and the pressure for
local supplements to keep the system operational.
(Reaffirms previous position.)
Support sufficient State General Funds for the Virginia State Police’s Sex Offender Investigative Unit (SOIU) to carry out its mission of thoroughly monitoring the Sex Offender Registry (SOR), including an equitable distribution of SOIU officers for Fairfax County.
(Reaffirms previous position.)