County Board Advertises 2024 Tax Rate Increase to Address Challenges

Published on February 27, 2024

Today, the Arlington County Board voted to advertise a real estate tax rate of $1.038 per $100 of assessed value, a 2.5-cent increase from calendar year 2023.

"Throughout the pandemic, the County Board held the tax rate flat to minimize impacts on taxpayers,” Arlington County Board Chair Libby Garvey said. Determining that more flexibility is needed to address County and School budget pressures and challenges, the Board advertised an additional 1 cent above the Manager’s 1.5 cent increase recommendation for a total increase of 2.5 cents to the real estate tax from last year’s rate of $1.013 per $100 of assessed value.

“There’s a lot of uncertainty this year when it comes to budgeting,” said Chair Garvey, “I’m very concerned about our schools and whether the state will do the right thing and provide the level of expected funding—or if the State will leave APS short millions on top of the cuts already made. Hopefully, the state will come through, and this extra penny will not be needed.”

If adopted in April, this advertised tax rate would result in an average real estate tax increase of $472 based on the average home value of $824,700. By law, the Board can adopt a tax rate no higher than the advertised rate, although it may adopt a lower rate.

The Board voted 5-0 to approve advertising a 2.5-cent real estate tax rate increase. To view the staff presentation on the proposed FY 2025 budget and reports on the requests to advertise tax and fee rates, visit this meeting’s webpage and scroll to item No. 35 A – P.

FY 2025 Proposed Budget
At the February 24 Regular County Board meeting, the County Manager proposed a $1.62 billion budget, a 4.7 percent increase over FY 2024. The budget recommended nearly $10.1 million in budget reductions and a 1.5 cent tax increase per $100 in assessed value, offset by the 1.7 cent reduction in the tax rate by moving to a stormwater utility fee.

Read the Manager's Proposed FY 2025 Budget

Arlington Public Schools (APS) is projected to face a budget shortfall. The APS Superintendent will propose his budget to the School Board on February 29.

Additional Flexibility to the Manager’s Proposed Budget
If adopted, this additional 1 cent above what the Manager recommended would generate an estimated $9.1 million in additional ongoing revenue. Should the Board adopt a 2.5 cent tax rate increase and the other proposed fee increases at its April meeting, the average Arlington homeowner would see their total fees and taxes increase by $582 from what they paid in FY 2024.

Aside from the real estate tax rate and a number of fee increases, the Board approved advertising all other taxes at their current rates.

Next steps
The Board will review the Manager's proposed budget through a series of work sessions with the Manager, County departments, and County advisory commissions in the coming weeks. The work sessions will be held in the County Board Room on the third floor of the Ellen M. Bozman Government Center, 2100 Clarendon Blvd. All work sessions are open to the public and will be live-streamed on the County website and broadcast on the County's cable channel.

The Board will hold a public hearing on the budget at 7 p.m. on April 2. You can sign up online to speak at this hearing beginning at 8 a.m., five days in advance.

The Board will hold a public hearing on the proposed tax rate at 7 p.m. on April 4. You can sign up online to speak at this hearing beginning at 8 a.m., five days in advance.

Both hearings will be held in the Board Room and will be live-streamed on the County website. The Board will adopt the FY 2025 Budget at its April Regular Board meeting. The FY 2025 fiscal year begins July 1, 2024. To view the Manager’s complete FY 2025 Budget proposal, visit the County website.

To submit a comment on the proposed budget, email the Board at countyboard@arlingtonva.us.

 

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