Prince William County supervisors are set for the first test of their stance on a potential 7% increase in real estate tax bills for county homeowners.

The Board of Supervisors will vote on fiscal 2022 tax rates to advertise for a public hearing during its meeting on Tuesday.

County Executive Chris Martino has proposed a $1.35 billion budget for fiscal 2022, which starts July 1, along with a $1.02 billion six-year Capital Improvement Program. The capital program includes $224.8 million for the upcoming fiscal year.

Residential real estate and personal property tax rates are not proposed to increase, although the average homeowner will pay more due to higher assessments under the spending plan. 

Tuesday’s meeting will be the first chance for supervisors to consider lowering the rate, but the board will not be bound to whatever rates it advertises for a public hearing. The board can adopt a lower rate than advertised, but cannot exceed it.

The real estate rate is proposed to remain at $1.125 per $100 of assessed value, but rising property values are expected to increase the average residential homeowner’s tax bill by $306, according to county staff. The rate sits at $1.125 per $100 of value.

The budget proposal says residential real estate values increased by an average of 7%, while commercial real estate values dropped an average of 4.5%. The increased assessments would result in an effective tax increase for residential properties, but a drop for commercial.

For example, a home valued at $400,000 in 2020 would be worth $428,000 for tax purposes in 2021, at a 7% increase. If the real estate tax rate remains the same, the homeowner’s taxes would go up from $4,500 to $4,815.

Budget Director David Sinclair has said the real estate tax rate would need to drop to around $1.05 per $100 of assessed value to avoid the effective increase. Reducing the rate, he said, would cut proposed revenues by $51.2 million, of which $29.3 million would come from the allocation to the school division, with the other $21.9 million going to the county’s general fund.

Supervisor Jeanine Lawson, R-Brentsville, made a motion at the board’s last meeting to advertise a real estate tax rate of $1.05, but rescinded it after Supervisor Andrea Bailey, D-Potomac, asked for the board to have time to review the proposal and the rates.

In an email to constituents, Supervisor Yesli Vega, R-Coles, said she supports lowering the rate to $1.05.

“I know it’s abnormal for a government official to want to give back some power to the people, but it goes without saying that most Prince William County families need the money more than we do right now,” she said.

In a newsletter, Supervisor Pete Candland, R-Gainesville, opposed the increased tax bills, citing the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Some Supervisors think homeowners are fine paying higher taxes, and local renters aren't even impacted by higher assessments,” he wrote. “However, we know the truth that a higher home value doesn't help those of us who aren't selling, and renters pay higher rents because the increased cost is passed on to them.”

The personal property tax, which primarily applies to vehicles, is proposed to remain at $3.70 per $100 of value.

The spending plan calls for a $1.60 tax per $100 of value on business computers and peripheral equipment, a 25-cent hike over the current rate. That levy primarily applies to data centers. Vega has floated the idea of raising the rate to $2.10, or halfway to the levy in Loudoun County.

The proposal also includes a 30-cent per pack tax on cigarettes, estimated to generate $3 million in revenue. The county currently does not have a cigarette tax.

The Board of Supervisors meets at 2 p.m. Tuesday. The tax discussion will occur during the evening portion of the meeting, which starts at 7:30 p.m.

Nolan Stout covers Prince William County. Reach him at nstout@insidenova.com or @TheNolanStout on Facebook and Twitter.

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(15) comments

Simplecountrygirl

Ok PWC this is how you fix this Board who want to tax us to death for nothing in return. If they pass a tax increase don't pay it. If you own your home just don't pay. If your taxes are taken out of your Mortgage have your Mortgage company hold the taxes out and don't send them to the County. If we all did this they will be broke in a NY minute including their salaries and this new whatever the heck is this Equity and Inclusion Officer (that we don't need and had no say in) plus an overpaid Chief of Police. What are they going to do put us all in jail, lien all the homes . Good luck on that. They would have to wait until we are dead until they could collect. If that sounds just too crazy for some of you then pay it and get nothing but illegals, trash, and more crime because we don't get anything for the taxes we already pay. Do you all know how this all work? The homes that house 20 and more people don't pay a dime. As each family are under the poverty rate so therefor they collect our assistance benefits, enjoy our parks and offerings including free health care including our hospitals while us dummies pay the freight. They pay nothing but sure have nice cars and trucks. What a bunch of stooges we are. Fairfax is lowering their taxes why are we increasing ours. Some of you will think Oh we need to do this. If you can tell me what for, I will be glad to re-think my stance. All you poster's on here have a great day and good luck.

AlfredP

lower taxes ! that should be the goal .. but nope keep hire, and wasting our money on crap like ** Prince William County hires Equity and Inclusion Officer ** every year it's the same .. they get great medical and salaries etc .. we the tax payer get the shaft.

FixPrinceWilliam

But Corey and Ann said that developments would increase our tax base!

Wake Up & Smell The Coffee!

I’m disgusted by that senseless waste of our tax payer dollars! Anyone else notice how we weren’t able to comment on that without submitting a form? Can’t possibly imagine why...

Sharon Fontanella

Show me the numbers. I don't believe there is a 7% increase in real estate assessments across the county for starters. Even if property values have increased, it doesn't mean we have more money in our pockets to put towards real estate taxes, or rent if you are a renter. Citizens across the county need to stand up and be heard. This decision affects all of us. Contact your district supervisor or the entire Board of County Supervisors and tell them this is wrong, just plain wrong.

FixPrinceWilliam

If your home has a higher value, then you pay more taxes. Why is this so hard to process? Death and taxes people. Always been that way. You are cogs in the machine. Suck it up and stop complaining. My God!

Wake Up & Smell The Coffee!

Perhaps you’re not a homeowner? Maybe you’re one who chooses not to pay your taxes? Or maybe a just a follower? But your comment’s indicative that you don’t fully comprehend this potential.

Agreed, that death & taxes are inevitable. But taxed to death? No thank you. So here’s bit of life advice, “In God we trust, all others we question”. Otherwise, continue to blindly accept all of life’s “7% increases” that are thrown your way.

Simplecountrygirl

OMG Wake up & Smell the Coffee, you obviously didn't get the the funniness in my post. I own a huge beautiful home and pay a boat load of taxes, so If I want a sermon I will go to my pastor as I sure don't need one from some stranger on InsideNova. Get some humor in your life. What I did say about all the people who live below the poverty level is true they don't pay taxes if you are so smart and educated you would know that. If you have a family and only make a certain income to don't pay taxes but reap all the benefits that we pay taxes for. The rest of my post, Chill out.

rpburkett

Maybe if the county needs more money they meed to save money either need to forget about renaming Jefferson Davis Highway or submit a go fund me so people that think that waste of money is worthwhile. That would save a few million.

Joe Christmas

Yeah, talk about waste, you have to include the hiring of the new "Inclusion and equity officer" or whatever. Nothing like spending a ton of money on indoctrinating the youth and addressing a non-existent problem in the county! Great work local government LOL!

Wake Up & Smell The Coffee!

"“Some Supervisors think homeowners are fine paying higher taxes...". Any Supervisor who thinks a homeowner is ok with paying higher taxes is 100% wrong. Unless, of course, those Supervisors don't know or care about their constituents.

geffert

Then they want to vote them selves a pay increase because things are too expensive - cut back on the spending like we have to do!

Paul Benedict

Prince William County property owners must pay higher taxes. Otherwise, they are hateful racists.

Duke Nukem

This person gets it

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