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Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Oh Please! ()
Date: September 07, 2013 03:30AM

Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Large chunk of $93 million needed to cover outstanding commitments from 2013 budget
http://www.fairfaxtimes.com/article/20130905/NEWS/130909655/1076/regional-job-seekers-networking-group-to-start-meeting-in-oakton/Board-evaluates-spending-surplus-funds&template=fairfaxTimes

On Tuesday, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors will decide how to spend $93 million in surplus funds left from fiscal 2013, which ended June 30.

A chunk of that money is expected to go to county employees, although the exact amount and other key details are still being worked out among county supervisors.

The surplus funds primarily came from two sources — real estate taxes coming in slightly higher than estimated, and about $63 million in savings from county agencies.

However, much of the $93 million is already spoken for, said Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Sharon Bulova (D).

About $37.5 million is needed to cover outstanding commitments from the fiscal 2013 budget.

County Executive Ed Long has proposed spending about $14 million on one-time expenses like maintenance, renovations for Americans With Disabilities Act compliance and turf sports fields. He has also proposed accelerating one-time investments slated for the fiscal 2015 budget, including voting machine replacement, to help offset the projected deficit in that budget.

The latter approach is not something Long has done before, Bulova said, and it is made possible by the county’s new two-year budget planning cycle.

“I think that was a pretty smart move on his part,” she said. “It will put us in a better position for when we’re making some decisions for next year.”

After Long’s proposals, there is about $27 million left for the Board of Supervisors to spend or to put in reserves for next year.

Bulova is proposing a one-time bonus for county employees that will amount to $500 after taxes, at a cost to the county of about $9 to 10 million.

“I think it’s important, because much of that positive balance is due to the savings and the frugalness of our county employees … that behavior is rewarded and some of that positive balance is used as a bonus for our employees,” she said.

However, county employees would much rather see a permanent pay increase than a one-time bonus, said Karen Conchar, of the SEIU-affiliated Fairfax County Government Employees Union.

She says providing a market rate adjustment would cost about the same amount as providing a bonus, except that it would be money that employees could count on in the future.

“We are concerned that Fairfax County employees are not being valued as much as other things in the budget,” Conchar said.

Most of the savings came from employees shouldering extra work while positions remained open, she said. “Fairfax County employees took up the slack from vacant positions and provided quality services by making things work, under budget,” Conchar said.

Bulova says she does not believe it is a good budgeting practice to use one-time money to funding a recurring expense like employee salaries.

“It would actually make the projected budget shortfall [for fiscal 2015] greater,” she said.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Bulova said board members were still discussing the employee pay issue, with some favoring a bonus, others supporting a market rate adjustment and others wanting to set aside the money to go toward salary increases next year.

In addition to employee salaries, there are a few lower-cost proposals from individual supervisors that will likely receive funding from the carryover package.

Supervisor John Cook (R-Braddock) asked for funding for a public awareness campaign to combat speeding on neighborhood streets.

“We noticed that the No. 1 complaint we were getting from people was neighborhood speeding,” Cook said, both from talking to civic associations as well as constituents contacting his office.

The public awareness campaign and several other initiatives to reduce speeding were proposed a couple years ago, but there has not been funding to support the campaign due to tight budgets.

Cook said he would love to see a public awareness and engagement from civic associations to pledge not to speed in neighborhoods, in the same way past efforts to take on drunken driving changed the conversation around those issues.

“How those terms like ‘designated driver’ got out there was through a public awareness effort,” he said.

Other initiatives that may receive funding include $1 million to replace some of the federal housing subsidies lost to sequestration and investments in trail maintenance and making The Grange in Great Falls ADA-compliant.

The housing initiative would not allow additional people to receive housing subsidies but would prevent the county from having to take away subsidies from those who already have them, Bulova said.

Prior to voting on the carryover package, the Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing on the spending proposals. The hearing is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. in the Fairfax County Government Center auditorium.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Section 8 Sharon Bulova ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:31AM

It would never occur to the socialist Sharon Bulova to consider giving a break to the people who paid the taxes! She, like all socialists, never lack for ideas on how to spend other peoples' money.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Terminate Ed Long NOW ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:38AM

If Ed Long supports the turf based on that ridiculous, deceptive report, he should be removed IMMEDIATELY.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: AndAgain ()
Date: September 07, 2013 10:02AM

Once again, turf fields are NOT a one time expense. The county is entering an endless cycle of debt where there will be huge annual costs to replace these fields. Fairfax County never seems to budget for inflation and since these fields are a petroleum by-product their costs could sky-rocket.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: what can be done? ()
Date: September 07, 2013 10:20AM

When the fields need repair, the County will say "sorry, we need more money to fix them, in their present condition they cannot be used at all" and then the hope will be that the boosters come up with the money. More likely, a tax increase or a cut in some other program.

Also, most Fairfax employees should be fired, so this $500 bonus thing should come off the table, and come off now. The service at the Department of Tax Administration is just unacceptable.

I agree, Ed Long is a serious problem and we need to get rid of him ASAP.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Budget Myths/Facts ()
Date: September 07, 2013 11:45AM

Budget Myth: Fairfax county employees are being treated the same as their counterparts across Northern Virginia.

Reality Check: Fairfax County is the only jurisdiction in the Northern Virginia area not to reward its most valuable resource with compensation increases in the FY 2014 budget cycle. Employees continue to provide quality services with less because our community is important to all of us.

Budget Myth: There is no money in Fairfax County to fund compensation increases.

Reality Check:, Fairfax County had a $93 million carryover for its FY2013 budget and $63 million was directly attributable to savings at the individual agency level by hard working County employees.

Meanwhile, it would only cost Fairfax County $28.5 million to fund a market rate adjustment and merit raise effective January 2014 for county employees in the FY 2014 budget.

Budget Myth: The county would fund compensation increases if only they had the money.

Reality Check: While not funding promised compensation increases, Fairfax County spent more than $74 million on a computer system, which requires annual maintenance that costs $980,990 each year. The computer program has increased every agency’s costs and will continue to increase.

Furthermore, Fairfax County took $7 million out of employees’ Healthcare Trust to help pay for the FOCUS computer system.

Budget Myth: All county employees are treated fairly when it comes to compensation increases

Reality Check: County Executive Ed Long received a 24% raise when he returned to the County. Before leaving the county in 2011, he made $195,040 (http://www.scribd.com/doc/32530072/Fairfax-County-VA-Employee-Salaries-2009). When he returned to the County in July 2012, he was given a salary of $257,282. (From the April 10 2013 Board of Supervisors meeting minutes)

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Bill.N. ()
Date: September 07, 2013 01:29PM

Use the money to pay down the unfunded pension liability or to buy back school bonds.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: LOL on that ()
Date: September 07, 2013 02:12PM

"Use the money to pay down the unfunded pension liability or to buy back school bonds."


That wouldn't be sexy or showy enough. (Unfortunately that's how they roll here because we are SO RICH).

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Gerry heart taxes ()
Date: September 07, 2013 02:26PM

I propose a statue in front of the government center of Sharon Bulova, without her excessive taxation this would not have been possible.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: H&S ()
Date: September 07, 2013 02:38PM

Gerry heart taxes Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I propose a statue in front of the government
> center of Sharon Bulova, without her excessive
> taxation this would not have been possible.

It should stand right next to the statue of Gerry Connolly.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: well we can use the pennies… ()
Date: September 07, 2013 02:50PM

Ed Long probably has a huge stash of pennies. Melt them down to make these statues.

They can have a little lawn of turf, and Sharon's has a little trolley car that goes round and round.

The last book from the Fairfax libraries can be kept under glass, so kids can see what one looked like.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:14PM

Use it for employee healthcare and reduce my out of pocket expenses. Healthcare goes up every year but we don't get market rate adjustments every year or when we do its 2% but healthcare goes up 6% to 12% so employees are still in the hole.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's The Door! ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:21PM

Employee Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Use it for employee healthcare and reduce my out
> of pocket expenses. Healthcare goes up every year
> but we don't get market rate adjustments every
> year or when we do its 2% but healthcare goes up
> 6% to 12% so employees are still in the hole.

If you don't like it, leave. Good luck finding another job where you don't have to do anything except get your picture taken for the in-house newsletter and go to all day training courses.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:23PM

Hey There's The Door! I bet you live in Mclean or Great Falls and boo hoo because your taxes are too high. Yet have some half ass job that you get overpaid to do and can more than afford a few extra bucks. So get over your high society ass.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's The Door ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:28PM

Employee Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hey There's The Door! I bet you live in Mclean or
> Great Falls and boo hoo because your taxes are too
> high. Yet have some half ass job that you get
> overpaid to do and can more than afford a few
> extra bucks. So get over your high society ass.


You guessed wrong. And if I did have a few extra bucks, what service do you provide to me? I think EASILY 20% of you County clowns could be eliminated, no one would notice. I think the same number of entire County offices could also be eliminated, no one would notice that either.

If you're so talented and skilled, go to work in the private sector.

You are most likely an ill-mannered, semiliterate, incompetent, self-important bureaucrat. Go away, you are not wanted or needed. You are a waste of atoms and dollars, quite an accomplishment.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:31PM

So you are a blow hard who thinks they are entitled. Or just an unemployed loser who is too good to work at home depot or Burger King to support yourself.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's The Door ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:37PM

This is all about you. You are the one whining about a bonus.

What do you do to deserve it?

How do you serve the people who pay your salary?

You are the entitled one-demanding a bonus where none is due.

Identify your job function and department-justify your existence, foolish little person.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:42PM

Never said I want a bonus. Get your story straight McLeanite

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Not Ed Long ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:45PM

Employee is right, MOST county employees are hard working and have been doing so much more with less. Yes there are a few bad apples but don't lump them all into one. We as citizens of Fairfax need to show our support for the people. Because without them you would have nothing. I am guessing "Employee" is right you (There's The Door ) are talking like a typical McLean, Vienna, Great Falls self entitled ignorant person.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's The Door ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:46PM

You first, newsletter star. I don't live in McLean.

You, and every single County employee, needs to justify their existence. Ed Long and Sharon Bulova like the control they have over little droids like you at taxpayer expense. That's about to end.

So, what is it you do? Burn books? Write turf reports? Put on the Nottoway Nights? Answer the phone somewhere? Make a failed attempt at balancing budgets?

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:52PM

You sir need to justify your existence and what makes you so wonderful and entitled in your little hole in Vienna or McLean.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Employee = Coward ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:54PM

You must really be inept if you are afraid to say what you do. You are one of the 20% that would never be missed.

I'm entitled to what I've worked for. Work, do you even know what that means?

You got Labor Day off, I didn't. I work hard for what I have, I doubt you've ever worked a full day at the County.

Go back to your newsletters, memos and watching Miley Cyrus on the County's computers.

You're worthless.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's the door=blowhard ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:56PM

I work every holiday sir so cry me a river.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire ()
Date: September 07, 2013 07:58PM

Sure you do, you just won't tell us doing what. I have an idea, sorting Ed Long's emails for him? That's probably quite a job.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: There's the door = blowhard ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:04PM

You probably get full health benefits working for your government contract job stealing from the government. Have fun yucking it up with your fellow Langley people.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Do You Ever Get ANYTHING Right? ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:06PM

As a matter of fact-I've turned down government work because of all of the bureaucracy.

And what was it you do again, that is so vital to the residents of Fairfax?

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Blow Hard ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:07PM

What is that you do Mr. Fancy Pants

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Manners, Manners ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:11PM

No, you first-you're the one living off MY money.

I'll bet you will never give your real job, as the laughter would go on for days.

I'll also bet you'd never give your real name, as an audit of your work would, well,let's just say, cause some complications.

Go back to Miley twerking away on YouTube, there will be another newsletter or all day class soon enough, be tough, you can handle the delay…

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Ye Old woodson Man ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:21PM

They need to keep some for more insurance premium raises due to Obamacare for active duty ad retired employees.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Ye Old Woodsan Man = Smart ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:24PM

Well said Mr. Woodson. Help with healthcare for current and former employess.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Tax Payer ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:28PM

Here is an idea, lets give the taxpayers a refund.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Let's Spend Money ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:54PM

Fairfax never plans ahead, I'd rather get rid of people and offices instead of trying to solve their problems for them.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Amazed ()
Date: September 07, 2013 08:59PM

Not Ed Long Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Employee is right, MOST county employees are hard
> working and have been doing so much more with
> less.

WTF county are you talking about, it sure as hell isn't Fairfax. Go by Chilis near the government center. You see county employees taking two hour lunches. I bet they don't even tip.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: No Hard Work ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:12PM

Fairfax employees don't work hard at all. In fact, most of them don't work at all.

They should be ashamed of even asking for damned bonus.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Mr Hand ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:15PM

Same old bullshit from teachers, we can get paid more in the private sector. But few leave. No private sector job gives you the summer off and lets you stay home when there is an inch of snow. Pussies.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: FACT CHECK22 ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:22PM

I don't see the employees asking for a bonus.....the board offered it duh. Must be a FCPS graduate.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Factcheck22 ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:24PM

Bulova is proposing a one-time bonus for county employees that will amount to $500 after taxes, at a cost to the county of about $9 to 10 million.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: End of story. ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:29PM

Factcheck22 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bulova is proposing a one-time bonus for county
> employees that will amount to $500 after taxes, at
> a cost to the county of about $9 to 10 million.

Laziness and incompetence should never be rewarded.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: End of Story ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:32PM

Not all county employees are lazy or incompetent. I bet we can find lazy and incompetent people where you work too.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: End of story ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:41PM

I live for the day I can tell my boss I am staying home and being paid because it might snow.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Uh Oh ()
Date: September 07, 2013 09:46PM

Talk about a waste of Money

Trying to read between the lines
Supervisor asking questions after discovering thousands of discarded library books
http://www.fairfaxtimes.com/article/20130906/NEWS/130909472/1117/trying-to-read-between-the-lines&template=fairfaxTimes

A Fairfax County supervisor who discovered thousands of library books in a dumpster outside a Fairfax County Public Library system facility is questioning why they were thrown away.

Providence Supervisor Linda Smyth (D) said that when she heard last week from a union representative representing Fairfax County librarians that perfectly good books were being disposed of in dumpsters, she went to the FCPL Technical Operations Center at the Chantilly Regional Library and had a look for herself.

“I went on Tuesday and saw a commercial trash dumpster filled up to my waist with books. When I went back on Thursday, the books in that dumpster were up past my shoulders. I would say there were thousands.”

Smyth said she examined some of the books, including reference books, travel books and children’s books including some of the popular Harry Potter series, and found many of them to be in good condition. “I picked out a few and found an atlas of art history, a picture book on gardening, and even a six-CD audio-book set, all in pristine condition” she said.

Smyth said she took some of the books to Deputy County Executive David Molchany, who oversees the Fairfax County Public Library & Archives. “He told me that he would keep Library Director Sam Clay from throwing away more books until a new policy on discarding books was implemented,” she said.

But Clay says there are already policies in place, and that the books being discarded are those deemed by those policies to be disposed of in that manner.

According to FCPL guidelines supplied by Clay, 2.3 million items are available for checkout from Fairfax County libraries and branches always have to evaluate and refresh their collections. This is done by removing items in poor condition or that contain outdated and inaccurate information using FCPL “weeding” guidelines that say an average book is checked out about 50 times before it’s deemed as no longer usable. “FCPL removes about 20,000 books per month using these criteria. We also add about 20,000 new items every month,” said Clay. “That means one percent of our entire collection is being refreshed every month.”

But Smyth says the baby is being thrown out with the bathwater.

“You can have as many policies as you want, but if good books paid for by taxpayer dollars are being thrown away, there is a problem,” she said.

According to Clay, low-demand books that have not been checked out in the past two years are also examined by staff and FCPL’s collections department gives these to the library’s Friends groups for semi-annual book sales. Clay said that about 3,000 discards have been given to various Friends groups since May.

FCPL guidelines stipulate that discontinued reference book series, items in bad, soiled, damaged or moldy condition, and computer, medical, financial and law books more than a few years old are not deemed as usable or sellable and are the only books thrown away.

But Smyth says what she saw in the dumpster were a variety of all kinds of books, many of which were newer and in excellent condition. “There are many questions that need to be answered here,” she said.

FCPL is currently in the process of implementing proposed beta tests of a new library model aimed at reducing the number of people needed to operate a library, in an effort to reduce the cost of library operations.

The Fairfax County Library Board of Trustees will meet Sept. 11 at the George Mason Regional Library in Annandale, where the board will consider the new restructuring plan.

“These proposed changes have nothing to do with our policies on book discards,” Clay said Thursday.

But Smyth isn’t so sure.

“I think it may all be part of a strategic plan,” she said. “I’m not so sure you can say that it isn’t related.”

Other Fairfax County supervisors are also not enamored with the proposed new library changes.

Mason Supervisor Penny Gross (D) and Dranesville Supervisor John Foust (D) have both said they want the library board to conduct more public outreach before implementing the proposed changes and that the matter will be brought up at the Sept. 10 Board of Supervisors meeting.

“That’s how we operate in Fairfax County,” Foust said. “We involve the public before implementing wholesale changes that will impact them.”

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: David Molchany = Toast ()
Date: September 07, 2013 10:17PM

David Molchany has a LOT of explaining to do. Someone is responsible for this, they should be prosecuted for destruction of public property.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Uh Oh ()
Date: September 07, 2013 10:42PM

Anyone ever heard of a book sale to raise some extra money. Or instead of throwing them away. Dontae them somewhere.

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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: 6u7ytr ()
Date: September 09, 2019 05:27PM


REALITY CHECK: $93 million surplus my ass

* bulova worked for a rich illegal alien just before getting elected

* the public was made aware of $93 million spending THE REAL SPENDING QUICKLY BECAME $6,000,000,000 SIX BILLION A YEAR without all interest paid

* workers in NYC loan houses temporarily held fairfax county "cush" jobs while the loans were being signed

* it's well known fx co gov is not even paying full interest on the loans


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Re: Board evaluates spending surplus funds
Posted by: Winey Teachers ()
Date: September 09, 2019 08:42PM

I actually chuckled when I saw FCPS school bus outside thinking oh the poor teachers actually have to get out of bed and put in a half day of work. A teacher I know whined about school starting again... I guess so when you're off all the time. What is really sickening is this teacher makes more than most anyone in her discipline in the private sector plus extremely generous benefits. Guess that's where that saying comes from...those who can't do, teach. Keep in mind, the new teachers really work for their money...it's the ones who've been on the dole who are just putting time. Some really miserable teachers. Maybe if they had to work like the rest of us they'd stop whining.

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