Budget shortfall discussed at Prince George joint meeting

There are 10 comments on the May 4, 2012, Hopewell News story titled Budget shortfall discussed at Prince George joint meeting. In it, Hopewell News reports that:

Tensions ran high as Prince George County's school board and board of supervisors met for a joint budget work session on Wednesday night before a packed public meeting room.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Hopewell News.

Typical Politics

Manassas, VA

#1 May 4, 2012
This is pretty funny. One idea is illegal, one idea is stupid, and the others just keep quiet. I think that our school board needs to become the board of supervisors. They have more sense about them. Save money by turning off the ac and making students buy the text book? Really? Just approve a budget and run the school till the money is depleted? Really? These are your educated ideas on how to fix the problem? I correct my previous statement. This is not funny. It is rather pathetic! Our children's education is at stake and you say "turn off the ac"?
Why

Manassas, VA

#2 May 4, 2012
The property tax base has dwindled over the last couple of years because people are moving out of the county. Why stay? Now with the education system facing problems that the board if supervisors seem unwilling to help, I bet more people leave. But hey, this could help the board of supervisors buy more land!
Same Ol Same Ol

Richmond, VA

#3 May 6, 2012
The School Board wants the County to pay the 5% that the State now requires Virginia Retirement System (VRS) participants to pay. Private employees have been contributing to their retirement accounts for many years. The money private employees contribute comes out of their salary. Why it is public employees think that someone else should pay for their retirement?

According to this article the Prince George School Board is 1.8 Million dollars short because of the added 5% contribution to the VRS required by the State. It has nothing to do with money needed to run the Schools. The School Board just wants the County to pay the money into the VRS that Teachers will have to pay.

What is next? Will the Police Chief ask for additional money from the County so that his Officers will not have to pay into the VRS? Will Public Works ask for more money? Will the rest of the County Departments ask for more? Because they want the County to pay the difference into the VRS.

Where will it all stop? Face it, public employees have had it good for a long time. Taxpayers are not only paying for their salaries and benefits but have been paying for their retirement accounts. It has been well documented that Government employee’s salaries are above that of private employees, on average. When compared to the private sector doing the same job.

School Teachers have a hard job. They are responsible for the future of our Country. But for the School Board to say they have a Budget shortfall because the Teachers are going to have to pay 5% into their retirement is ridicules. If the School Board wants to pay the 5% let them find it from the Budget.
Who Cares

Milford, VA

#4 May 6, 2012
Same Ol Same Ol, your facts in reference to VRS is wrong. The new state mandate on VRS will be phased in, 1% each year up to the 5%. It also requires the locality to provide a 1% raise up to the 5% to be phased in as well. This was all created by Senate Bill 497. There was also other mandates required by the state that the locality had to fund. I am not a teacher and I do not have a dog in this fight. I just like people to have all the facts so as to render an informed decision. To compare a local government worker to the private sector is not completely fair either. Local government workers make less than their equal counterparts in the private sector. The one thing that attracts people to local government is the benefits. It all equals out in the wash. There was a study on this very topic last year, and that was their conclusion.
Same Ol Same Ol

Richmond, VA

#5 May 6, 2012
WWho Cares, I referenced the article. This from the article: The school board is asking the county for an additional $1.8 million to close the gap in its budget, which was created almost entirely by an unprecedented 49 percent increase in the Virginia Retirement System rate. Increases in group life insurance and health insurance also contributed to the shortfall

They are asking for a 1.8 Mil increase because of the VRS increase. That is why I made my statement.

There was also a study done that showed that government workers are paid better than their private counter parts. We could site study after study.

I responded to the article. Private sector employees have had to contribute more to their retirement and insurance for quite some time. Just as the local government workers have not had raises neither have private workers. But private workers have had to endure the rising cost of Health Insurance and Retirement contributions, when local government workers have not.

My point is everyone is going through the same thing. Less revenue coming in means less to give out.

There are other underling issues regarding spending within the PG government. The School Board has given money back to the county in the past. The county wants to spend $1.5 Million on a $500,000 piece of property. That does not make sense. There is more to this story I am sure, but do not ask the citizens to pay your added retirement and rising Health Care costs. After all those not working for the county has had to deal with these very issues and not get them paid for by someone else.

Many other county employees that have had their Health and Group Insurance go up and are paying the added costs. This also apply's to the added contributions to the VRS. What makes the Teachers any better then the other county employees?

The House Bill you refer to covers State employees in reference to pay increases to off set the added monies to the VRS. Teachers are employees of the jurisidiction they are employed by not State workers.
Who Cares

Milford, VA

#6 May 6, 2012
Same Ol Same Ol. The study I was referring to was conducted by the Center for State & Local Government Excellence and the National Institute on Retirement Security. Can you provide with a study that backs your opinion? There was also an article last year in the Richmond Times that talked about a study performed for the governor in reference to VRS. It came to the same conclusion. Like I said in many previous post, people need to rely on facts to render an informed opinion.
Who Cares

Milford, VA

#7 May 6, 2012
SB 497 Virginia Retirement System; local government and school board employees, contributions. John C. Watkins | all patrons ... notes | add to my profiles

another bill?

go

Summary as passed Senate:(all summaries)

Virginia Retirement System employee contributions; local employees; school board employees. Requires that persons employed by local government or school board employers be required to pay the five percent employee contribution to the Virginia Retirement System. School board employees would be authorized to phase in the five percent contribution over a maximum of five years. Local employers and school boards would be required to provide employees with a raise to offset the employee contributions.

Same Ol Same Ol. Here is the Senate Bill 497497 that I reference. Explain to me how this doesn't apply to the local jurisdiction.
Who Cares

Milford, VA

#8 May 6, 2012
Same Ol Same Ol. You got me on the topic of purchasing the land for $1.5 million. I can't render an educated defense for that. It appears to defy logic.
Who Cares

Milford, VA

#9 May 6, 2012
Same Ol Same Ol. Please explain more about the land purchase. It sounds interesting.
Same Ol Same Ol

Richmond, VA

#10 May 7, 2012
Who Cares,

The land that the county wants to purchase is assessed at $500,000. The Board of Supervisor has agreed to pay $1.5 million for it. They supposedly want to build Base Ball and Soccer fields on this land. The land is shrink swell land and not suitable for building. The residences of PG are against this purchase. PG owns land on 156 that the Board of Supervisors say will cost too much for utilities to be put on the property.

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