December 7, 2011
At their meeting Wednesday, the Albemarle County Supervisors continued working on the County's 5-year financial plan. Now, because of higher pension costs, the County will face major budget cuts.
The Virginia Retirement System (VRS) costs were handed down by the state to Albemarle County on Thursday. The price tag increased by $825,000. Now, the supervisors are looking at a very different financial situation than they were just last month.
If the Board of Supervisors vote to keep the tax rate at 74.2 cents per 100 dollars assessed, they face $225,000 in reductions. If the supervisors decide to equalize the tax rate to 76.5 cents per 100 dollars assessed, they face $125,000 in reductions.
"The county government has done an excellent job of winnowing down its expenses," Board Chairwoman Ann Mallek tells CBS19. "We are so far away from enhanced services. We have shrunk everything down to the very core services, which is what makes it so difficult now."
The supervisors were told last month that if the County raised taxes for the first time in four years, they would be able to both build and staff the new Crozet Library. Now, even with the equalized tax rate, the County can build the Crozet Library but they won't be able to pay to operate it.
The Board voted to move forward and seek construction bids for the new library. They also asked staff to prepare a budget with the equalized tax rate. They won't vote on the tax rate until the Spring.