Alexandria City Council Adopts Fiscal Year 2022 Budget
For Immediate Release: May 5, 2021
On May 5, the Alexandria City Council unanimously adopted a Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 General Fund Operating Budget of $770.7 million, which represents a 2.3% increase from the FY 2021 budget, reflects a two-cent decrease in the real estate tax rate, fully funds the operating and capital budget requests of the School Board, and eliminates DASH bus system fares.
“As our community rebuilds from the past year’s economic crisis and the uncertainty of its long-term impacts, City Council’s adopted FY 2022 budget provides support for residents most affected, and maintains the core services Alexandrians rely on,” said Mayor Justin Wilson. “I commend the City Manager and staff who developed this budget, which responds to this unprecedented environment with both ingenuity and fiscal responsibility. This plan positions us to provide for Alexandria’s immediate needs, while maintaining economic stability in a post-pandemic future.”
The approved budget focuses on continuing the City’s record of prudent fiscal management; providing tax rate relief amidst rising assessments; building back cautiously from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic; and sustaining the delivery of essential services to the community.
The budget approved by City Council includes the first real estate tax reduction in 15 years, a decrease from $1.13 to $1.11 per $100 of assessed value, to minimize the impact of real estate value increases on homeowners. To boost low ridership caused by the pandemic and increase access to transportation for all residents, the FY 2022 budget funds the elimination of DASH bus system fares, starting September 5.
As in the City Manager’s February proposal, the FY 2022 budget includes $2 million for targeted new operating investments; and funds 100% of the Alexandria City Public Schools’ (ACPS) approved capital improvement program and the School Board’s proposed operating budget. Overall, the FY 2022 adopted budget contains $11.8 million in General Fund expenditure savings in City operations from budget operating costs, including the unfunding of 38 vacant positions.
The adopted budget includes adjustments to the City Manager’s proposed FY 2022 Capital Improvement Program (CIP), including reallocation of $3.2 million to accelerate the Joseph Hensley Park renovation project and a $1 million one-time increase in affordable housing, funded by revenue re-estimates. The projected revenue increase also provides for a one-time 1.0% base salary bonus for City employees and State employees, such as those of the Alexandria Health Department, following merit increases being frozen in Fiscal Year 2021. A $24.22 increase in the residential refuse collection fee, from $460.00 to $484.22, will help fund new vehicles required to convert yard waste collection and recycling from a contracted service to a City operation.
Nearly $800,000 in Alexandria Police Department funding for School Resource Officers was temporarily reallocated by City Council to contingent reserves with the direction that staff present a proposal, with input from ACPS, for City Council’s consideration. The proposal would provide recommendations for funding mental health resources for school-age children, the Teen Wellness Center, an additional Behavioral Health Specialist for the Alexandria Crisis Intervention and Co-responding Program (ACORP) pilot program, or other similar needs identified by staff. The proposal is scheduled to be presented to City Council before their summer recess.
The approved budget reflects $12 million in operating budget savings proposed by the City Manager, maintains most City programs and services at their existing levels, and continues City investments in equitable, green and smart initiatives. The adopted budget also accounts for $293 million of planned capital investments in FY 2022 for schools, transportation, sewers, stormwater management, public buildings and facilities, and information technology.
Visit alexandriava.gov/Budget to learn more about the entire budget process and view all budget documents.
For media inquiries only, contact Kelly Gilfillen, Acting Director of Communications and Public Information, at email@example.com or 703.746.4644.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/122170.