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Supervisors OK Meals Tax Primer for Upcoming Referendum

by Karen Goff August 2, 2016 at 11:30 am 17 Comments

Not Your Average Joe's RestonComing soon to a mailbox near you: The Fairfax County official information sheet on the upcoming meals tax referendum.

In June, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved the referendum for the Nov. 8 election, saying then they were prepared for a battle on the issue.

Ultimately, it will be up to Fairfax County voters to decide whether the county will get a 4-percent meals tax, similar to what is already in place in the towns of Herndon and Vienna; Fairfax City; and Arlington and Alexandria.

The addition of a meals tax has been discussed for years, but was last put to referendum in 1992, where it failed.

But with the county and its school system continually in a budget crunch, Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins motioned last spring to revisit the issue.

The tax would raise about $100 million annually, 70 percent of which would go to Fairfax County Public Schools. About $3 million would go back to the restaurants themselves to offset the cost of the tax to the businesses.

Meanwhile, take a look at the details from the county in the document below.

2016 Meals Tax Referendum Pamphlet by Karen Goldberg Goff on Scribd

Photo: Not Your Average Joe’s Reston/file photo

  • susie

    If Fairfax County would stop giving sanctuary to illegal aliens and obey the Federal laws, it would not need to create more taxes. Crazy!

    • ItsNotMyMoney

      If there were no public schools and parents funded their own children’s education with their own dollars through the private sector then taxes would be substantially less.

  • SmokeAndMirrors

    SO is this saying that if approved, my real estate taxes would go down by 30% and that 30% deficit would come from folks who can afford eating at local restaurants, sign me up.
    Or is this more like: “If we buy this property (even at three times it’s value) it will add 98 contiguous acres of Greenspace”?

  • Mike M

    It figures that our very own Cathy Hudgins raised this additional tax idea from the grave.

    • Greg

      Imagine that!

  • Arielle in NoVA

    Our schools need the money. Since Richmond won’t send more of our contributions back to us, we need this.

    • The schools do need the money. They are grossly under funded due to Richmond and the changing nature of our population.

      • susie

        The “changing nature of our population” is politically correct fascism for rampant illegal immigration.

    • cRAzy

      No, we need FCPS to spend less–for a change.

  • Chuck Morningwood

    I don’t have to read the BoS “Little Red Book” on the proposed meals tax to say, “The answer is still ‘No'”.

  • Walter Hadlock

    I think 70% for the schools is far too much. The Fairfax County Public School system (FCPS) is a money pit. No matter how much money they get, the hand is always out for more. I suspect there are far more of us without children enrolled, including those of us whose children long ago graduated, in FCPS. There are numerous non-FCPS projects in the county that need funding. I would suggest reversing the split: 30% for FCPS and 70% for other needs. Four percent added to the existing 6% equals a 10% tax on eating out. Too bad the county went for the maximum of 4%. It’s all well and good to speculate how many “out of county” people will eat here in the county, but that doesn’t make any difference to county residents, many of whom frequently eat out. And that includes getting a salad at the local grocery store for lunch or supper. I voted against the meals tax the last time it went to referendum, and I’ll vote against this time. And by the way, when we moved here it was for a job. We did not do it because of the school system.

  • UStifosi .

    So when you add the RTC parking money grab to the meals tax that could easily be a 10% increase to you eating out bill. What a negative experience! No thanks to both.

  • Save Our Libraries

    If the schools are getting 70% of the meals tax revenues it will provide no tax relief to homeowners on fixed incomes and little help to libraries and other services which have already been cut to the bone and are starving for funds. I will vote NO.

    • Greg

      I agree. The 30 percent is about $30 million and it’s to be divided among all of these things? $30 million is 1/3 the cost of renovating one high school around here, so it seems there will be very little for libraries or tax relief.

      “30 percent of the net meals tax funds will be dedicated to county services, capital improvements and property tax relief . Examples of capital improvements include renovations, updates and new construction of schools, fire and police stations, libraries, among other county facilities.”

  • Greg

    Can someone elaborate on this: “About $3 million would go back to the restaurants themselves to offset the cost of the tax to the businesses.”

    Unless I missed it, i don’t see anything in the primer addressing it.

  • dogbrain

    Abso-friggin-lutely not.

  • cRAzy

    Reads like RA’s Tetra sales brochure (er, excuse me, “fact sheet”). BS piled as high as the sky.

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