Management and Budget

Fairfax County, Virginia

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703-324-2391
TTY 711

12000 Government Center Parkway Suite 561
Fairfax, VA 22035-0074

Christina Jackson,
Director

FY 2017 Budget Process Questions and Answers

Package 1 (2/17/2016)

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County-Related Questions

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School-Related Questions

1

*    Please provide additional information on what would it take to have everyone who is non-public safety, non-teacher on the same pay scale.

5

*    FCPS has provided information on the cost impact of the growing number of students receiving free or reduced price meals and/or in need of English-language instruction. We have not, however, seen a full breakdown of costs associated with optional academic enrichment programming for students, such as enrollment in Advanced Academic Centers, pupil placing out of base schools, and foreign language immersion instruction. Please provide a breakdown of costs associated with all optional academic enrichment services – both in school boundaries and out of school boundary based programs.

2

*    Please provide a comparison of FCPS health insurance costs versus County health insurance costs over the last three years, the employer/employee cost sharing percentages, and the projected impact of the Cadillac tax.

6

*    Who is the owner of #IamFCPS?  Also how much has FCPS spent on videos / the PR campaign using #saveFCPS and #IamFCPS?

3

*    Please provide additional information on the status of the Human Trafficking Grant. How will it be funded if grant funding goes away?  Also please provide information on human trafficking-related training provided to police officers beyond those working directly on the program.

7

*    On slide 5 of the Superintendent’s proposed budget presentation, it is cited that “Since FY2008, FCPS has made budget reductions totaling nearly half-a-billion dollars.” What portion of this is real dollar cuts versus cost avoidances? Please also provide a detailed breakdown for each category.

4

*    Please provide a summary of all state positions that the County supplements.  Also provide comparative information for other jurisdictions.

 

 

Package 2

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County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

8

*    Referencing slide 45, please provide details for the $28.9 million included in the FY 2017 Advertised Budget for the Capital Paydown Program.

17

During deliberations on the Infrastructure Financing Committee, it was learned that the “Community Use” charges are set by each school and the funds collected are retained by the school itself, for use in the discretion of the principal. It was noted this situation may be appropriate for review, but took no further action as a committee. Now, however, it would be useful to gather additional information about such funds.

 

Therefore:

 

a.     What are the criteria used by FCPS to set the Community Use fees? If criteria are established on a per school basis, please explain why and how the individual school criteria are set. Please also identify who sets the fees and the criteria.

b.     What are the amounts collected by each school for Community Use fees in each of the last three years?

 

Are the fees collected retained by the individual school? If so, what guidelines govern the spending and who is responsible for making the spending decisions. How are the Community Use funds spent?

9

*    Referencing slide 65, please provide additional information on the decreasing balances available for transportation-related funding at the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC).

18

*    Given the slowdown in enrollment growth, what are the assumptions for FY 2018 and beyond for enrollment growth/demographic changes?

10

*    How many Fairfax County fires were determined to be arson in 2013, 2014, and 2015 (realizing that 2015 investigations may still be underway?)

19

*    Is FCPS projecting fuel savings in FY 2016 and FY 2017 due to the significant decrease in fuel costs? If so, what is the estimated amount and has this been factored into the FY 2017 Proposed Budget?

11

*    Please provide additional detail about the LOSAP program for volunteer firefighters. What are some options to funding a more robust program, especially as grant funds may disappear?

20

*    When will the Compensation Study be completed? Please provide details about the $40 million Teacher Salary Scale Investment plan included in the FY 2017 Proposed budget.  How are recruitment issues, such as the fact that 200 teacher positions were unfilled at the beginning of the school year, addressed in the allocation of the $40 million?  How does this level of vacancies at the beginning of the year compare with prior years?

12

*    Following up question about EMS billing revenue, please provide examples of other departments, if any, that generate revenue, and how that revenue is allocated -- into the General Fund, or direct allocation for use in the department.  Please also provide a brief discussion of the policy issues that may be involved.

21

*    Regarding the $40 million for teachers’ compensation in the Superintendent’s budget request:  What exactly is this meant to accomplish? A study has not yet been completed regarding compensation and benefits. When will that be completed?  The graph provided at our budget workshop shows FCPS are middle of the pack overall, so where do the Schools anticipate they will they end up with this $40 million investment? What is the target and is this a one-time adjustment or will it take more than $40 million to reach their target?

13

*    Is it possible to charge a fee for medevac transport similar to the fee the County charges for EMS ground transport?

22

*    What percentage of Arlington's School budget goes to teachers’ salaries compared to Fairfax County?

14

*    Referencing slide 33 in the County Executive’s budget presentation, please provide additional information on retirement ratios.  Does recent market activity have an impact?

 

 

15

*    Referencing the proposed tax rate impact on the County taxpayers on slide 75, how much has average incomes gone up over the recent past in Fairfax County?

 

 

16

*    Referencing slides 11 and slides 18-22 of the County Executive’s FY 2017 Advertised Budget Presentation, please provide comparable data for Arlington County on employment, residential and nonresidential real estate assessments.

 

 

Package 3

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County-Related Questions

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School-Related Questions

23

*    Please provide additional information on polygraph-related positions. How many, and what types of staff are doing this work? Has it been outsourced in the past?

 

 

24

*    Referencing slide 33, please provide the estimated premium adjustment provided in the annual budget compared to the actual premium adjustments required for the last five fiscal years data is available.

 

 

25

*    Please provide a list of all items funded in the FY 2017 Advertised Budget Plan that are one-time in nature.

 

 

26

*    What is the cost of a 15 percent salary supplement for Fairfax District Court employees?

 

 

27

*    Referencing Slide 27 of the County Executive's presentation of FY 2017 Advertised Budget showing that State funding on an inflation adjusted basis has decreased statewide from $4,275 per pupil in FY 2009 to $3,655 per pupil in FY 2015, what is the County funding per pupil to Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) over the same period?

 

 

28

*    Please provide information on the total number of tax exempt properties, trends over last decade and impact on lost property tax revenues.

 

 

Package 4

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

29

*    Please explain how the Athletic Services fee is addressed in cases of children whose families cannot afford it.  Please include the methods employed by the County’s athletic groups in terms of scholarships etc.

 

 

30

*    Please provide a copy of the Diversion First multi-year funding table.

 

 

31

*    Please provide the county projections (from the approved budgets) and the corresponding year’s actual amounts for sales tax revenue.

 

 

32

*    As a follow-up to the responses on the Capital Paydown Program and one-time funding in FY 2017, please identify the specific FY 2017 capital projects that are non-recurring.

 

 

 

Package 5

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

33

*    Please provide an analysis of the change in medical insurance benefits over the past 5 years.  Please include the employee portion of the premium, county cost, employee deductible and co-pay.  Provide the percentage of employees in each plan and the percentage of employees who opt out of county medical benefits.

 

 

34

*    Please provide a multi-year comparison of the salary increases for County versus FCPS employees.

 

 

35

*    Provide a listing by line item where the County budget increased more than 2 percent.

 

 

36

*    Please provide an overview of the progress made to date with regards to implementing the County’s revised reserve policies.

 

 

 Package 6 (4/11/2016) 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

37

Please provide square foot by employee calculations for each county facility that is primarily office support (Government Center, Herrity, Pennino, and Transportation lease space for example).  Please provide a list of large non-office spaces with the corresponding square footage.  However, typical office conference rooms etc. should be included in the calculations not excluded.  Please provide the numbers including an allocation for large non office spaces (Board Room, Forum for example) and without.

41

Please provide a list of all FCPS extracurricular programs (such as summer learning camps, voluntary enrichment programs, etc.) that charge fees, what the fees are, and a breakout of how much of each program cost the fees cover.

38

Please provide an update on athletic fees compared to other surrounding jurisdictions.

42

Please explain how transportation is provided for students who voluntarily pupil place out of their boundary school for academics, enrichment, language immersion, advanced academics, or other voluntary reasons. Please also provide a chart that shows how many students do this.

39

Please provide a summary reference document with the proposed Capital Improvement Plan numbers that will allow the Board to know specifically what they are voting on.

   

40

Please provide an update on the assessment studies noted in the Infrastructure Financing Committee Report associated with capital improvements.

   

 

Package 7 (4/12/2016) 

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

43

Please assess the status of the County’s response to human trafficking with the current resources and staffing model.

49

The FY 2016 Approved Budget projected an increase of 2,631 students. Based on the FY 2016 Revised Budget projection, student enrollment grew 584, a difference of 2,047 students. What is the estimated savings in expenditures from the lower than projected student enrollment increase for FY 2016?

44

Please provide a summary of the most recent fee for services adjustments for the County.

50

In FY 2016, the cost of enrollment growth/demographic changes of 2,631 students was estimated at $22.1 million.  For FY 2017, the projected decrease of 1,334 students as compared to the FY 2016 Approved Budget results in savings of $2.9 million. Please provide the assumptions included in the FY 2017 Proposed Budget related to demographic changes (ESOL enrollment, Special Education, Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Meals) both compared to the FY 2016 Approved and the FY 2016 Revised Budgets. Why would the per pupil increase be higher than the per pupil decrease?

45

Please expand on Slide 29 of the County Executive’s Budget Presentation to include showing the data in percentage growth terms.

51

According to “FY 2017 Preliminary Forecast Projections Estimates as of April 27, 2015” handout given to the Budget Task Force, FCPS was expecting a $19.5 million reduction in state revenue and a $5.5 million increase in sales tax revenue – for a net loss of $14 million. We now know state funding, combined with sales tax, is a $21 million increase. Do these changes reflect a $35 million positive swing in state funding? If not, please explain.

46

Please provide the detailed amounts added to reserves as part of the advertised FY 2016 Third Quarter Review and the FY 2017 Advertised Budget Plan.

52

According to “FY 2017 Preliminary Forecast Projections Estimates as of April 27, 2015” handout given to the Budget Task Force, FCPS was projecting a $22.1 million increase in funding required for “enrollment and demographic changes.” New projections indicate $2.9 million in savings. Is this a $25 million position swing in funding because of new enrollment/ demographic changes? If not, please explain.

47

Please discuss the rationale for the timing of the current Diversion First staff recommendation for the third and fourth Mobile Crisis Units (MCUs) in the multi-year funding table.  Would accelerating implementation be disruptive to the long-term plan?

53

The School Board voted to use operating fund dollars to pay higher salaries to school cafeteria workers whose salaries are ordinarily paid from the Food & Nutrition Services (FNS) Fund.

Could cafeteria workers’ raises in FY 2017 be paid from the FNS Fund?

What are the actual FY 2015 revenues and expenses, and the FY 2016 Adopted Budget revenues and expenses of the FNS Fund? 

What percentage of FNS fund revenues for FY 2014, FY 2015 and FY 2016 (so far) are derived from the federal government? 

What is the current reserve balance in the FNS fund?

48

Please provide a list of Home Improvement Loan Program loans by year, district, and loan amount.

54

In the School Board Work Session presentation from March 31, 2016, Slide 9 talks about the pay gap from market average and number of employees impacted. Please provide a similar chart broken down by singular percentages with the number of employees in each category. Also, are there any employees making above the market average? If so, please provide a chart broken down by singular percentages for that as well.

55

Provide a listing by line item of where the County budget for operating expenses increased more than 2 percent.

   

 

Package 8 (4/13/2016)

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

56

Please provide information about the cost of establishing the Office of the Independent Police Auditor as recommended by the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission.

   

57

FY 2008 marked the first year of the Neighborhood Enhancement Partnership Program. Throughout Fairfax County, communities came together to improve their community and initiate long-term community enhancement projects.  The last year of funding was FY 2015.  Please provide a list of Neighborhood Enhancement Partnership Program grant projects by year, district, and grant amount used.

   

58

Please provide a detailed breakdown of the fringe benefit cost by employee type similar to the WABE analysis http://www.fcps.edu/fs/budget/wabe/2015.pdf  on page 46.  Include all costs of benefits provided by the County but not the school system.  Also include an estimated cost for the vacation, sick leave, and holiday benefits provided as a part of the compensation package, where applicable.

   

59

Please provide information on what is included in the $107 million for the Park Bond Referendum.  In addition, please discuss the option of increasing this total by another $13 million (to a total of $120 million) for a County museum in Lorton.  Include in the response a discussion of what happened the last time a museum proposal was brought forward as an option with George Mason University.  Also include a discussion of the ongoing costs that a museum would have on the annual budget.

   

60

Please provide a list of travel cost by employee during the last two calendar years (or last fiscal year and fiscal year to date). Please include the employee title, employee department, date of travel, amount of travel, destination of trip, and purpose of trip.

   

 

Package 9 (4/15/2016)

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

61

Please provide additional context and perspective on the response to Budget Question 60 on non-local training and travel data.

   

62

Please provide the number of cell towers/locations (if on buildings) on county land and the revenue the county receives from these leases (excluding schools). How is cell tower-related revenue reflected in the budget?  Also, please specify the revenue which the county receives from the cell leases located on the Massey Building in Fairfax.

   

 

Package 10 (4/26/2016)

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

63

When was the last time the balance at Third Quarter was $0?

65

Please provide the number and percentage of FCPS employees eligible to receive FCPS health benefits in each medical plan, and the number of FCPS employees not participating in any FCPS medical plan in FY 2015 and FY 2016.

64

Please provide additional information on the inventory of County artifacts. Please include specifics on what the artifacts are, where they are currently stored and the condition of the buildings they are stored in. Also, what is their value and what is the criteria for accepting artifacts.  What is the plan for managing this inventory?

66

Please provide sq. ft. by employee calculations for each of FCPS facilities that are primarily office support (Gatehouse and new leased space for example). Please provide a list of large non office spaces with the corresponding sq ft. However, typical office conference rooms and core should be included in the calculations not excluded. Please provide the numbers including an allocation for large non office spaces and without.

 

Package 11 (6/6/2016)

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

70

Please provide a list by employee/agency of former employees who retired from the county and are now working for the county or who worked for the County as employees or consultants for all or part of 2015, including their title, their current salary/compensation, and the number of years they have been back at the county.

67

Please provide a detailed breakdown of the fringe benefit cost by employee type similar to the analysis done by WABE for teachers http://www.fcps.edu/fs/budget/wabe/2015.pdf page 46. Include all cost of benefits provided by the school system. Also include an estimate cost for the vacation, sick leave and holiday benefits provided as a part of compensation package where applicable.

   

68

Please analyze the changes in FCPS medical plan benefits over the past 5 years.  Please include employees portions of the total premium costs, employee deductibles and employee copay.

   

69

Please provide a list of travel costs for all FCPS employees during the last two calendar years (or FY 2015 and FY 2016 to date). Please include the employee title, employee department, date of travel, amount of travel, destination of trip, and purpose of trip.

 

Responses to BOS Questions - FY 2016 Carryover Package (9/19/2016)

 

Number

County-Related Questions

Number

School-Related Questions

C1

Please circulate the current living wage policy approved by the Board in 2007. Please provide information on what it would cost and how many people would be impacted if the living wage was increased to $15.00. Also, include a comparison of Arlington County’s employee benefits to those of Fairfax County.

   
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