On April 3, 2013, the Board set the real property tax rate at $1.205 per $100 in assessed value, a decrease of 3 cents, or 2.4 percent, from Fiscal Year 2013. The newly adopted tax rate will reduce the average homeowner property taxes in Loudoun County approximately $69 a year, based on the current average home value of $405,977. The personal property tax rate remains unchanged at $4.20 per $100.
The FY 2014 fiscal plan includes $1.2 billion for operating costs, including $841.7 million for the school system, $412.8 million for the general government, and $8.8 million for the Comprehensive Services Act for At-Risk Youth Act (CSA). In addition, the adopted fiscal plan includes $153.7 million for annual debt service, of which $109.2 million is for the school system and $44.5 million is for general government projects.
About 65% percent of the $1.02 billion in revenues from local taxes will be used for school operating expenses, capital projects and debt service. The remaining 35% percent will be used for the general county government for operating expenses, capital projects and debt service. In adopting the FY 2014 budget, the Board of Supervisors increased the School Boardâ€™s budget by $20.5 million.
The FY 2014 budget includes funding for a limited number of enhancements for the general county government, most of which focus on core operating service needs and new facilities. The budget also includes a 2 percent merit-based pay increase for eligible county employees.
Capital Improvement Program
The Board also adopted an amended $1.73 billion Capital Improvements Program (CIP) for the six-year, FY 2013 â€“ FY 2018 planning period. FY 2014 includes $264 million for general government projects and $11.95 million for public schools projects. The largest expenditure category is transportation infrastructure at $166 million, which includes $124 million for road, trail and sidewalk projects. Major transportation projects include $40 million for the widening of Route 606, $27.3 million for Gloucester Parkway, $17.5 million for Kincaid/Crosstrail Boulevard, $40 million for Dulles Corridor Rapid Transit, and $2 million for the acquisition of transit buses.
Other expenditures are related to public safety projects and parks and recreation projects, including $7.8 million for construction of the Ashburn Sheriffâ€™s Station, $3.6 million for renovation of the Ashburn Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station, $3.6 million for the Aldie Fire and Rescue Station, $4.9 million for the Emergency Communications/E-911 Center, $9 million for the Lovettsville District Park, $5.38 million for the Lovettsville Community Center replacement project, $2.1 million for athletic field irrigation and turf improvements, and $36.5 million for the Dulles Multi-Purpose Center. The Public School capital projects include $4.3 million for an addition to Mercer Middle School, $5 million for an addition to Freedom High School and $2.6 million for stadium upgrades at Loudoun County High School.
Adoption of the FY 2014 budget followed the presentation of the Proposed FY 2014 Fiscal Plan by the County Administrator and public hearings in February, then a series of budget worksessions held in March by the Board of Supervisors. The budget will go into effect on July 1, 2013, while the new tax rates will be used for the spring tax collection. More information about the budget process is online at www.loudoun.gov/budget.