by Democratic candidate for Arlington County Board Matt de Ferranti. I couldn’t agree more with what de Ferranti says here, as it’s almost exactly what I argued the other day. 🙂 I strongly urge every Democrat to vote NO on this bill and Gov. Northam to VETO IT if it reaches his desk. – Lowell
COUNTY BOARD CANDIDATE MATT DE FERRANTI ISSUES STATEMENT OPPOSING GOLF COURSE TAX GIVEWAY
de Ferranti urges Legislators to Oppose, Governor to Veto, Arlingtonians to write in Opposition to House Bill 1204
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ARLINGTON, VA – Matt de Ferranti, candidate for Arlington County Board, issued the following statement about legislation that would cut revenues for Arlington County by an estimated $1.5 million per year so that golf courses can receive a tax break.
“This legislation would hurt Arlingtonians by shifting the tax burden from two wealthy businesses to homeowners. Arlingtonians want to see their property taxes used to keep Arlington schools strong, to support our public safety officers, to grow our economy, to keep our transportation network working, and to ensure that housing is affordable. This community does not want to see core services cut to give wealthy businesses a tax break,” said County Board candidate Matt de Ferranti.
The Legislation was drafted specifically to prevent Arlington’s tax assessor from assessing the value of the two golf courses in the County at the current $12 per square foot, which is already significantly less than the $99 per square that the land would be assessed at if it were residential property. Under the bill, House Bill 1204, the two golf courses, Washington Golf and Country Club and the Army Navy Country Club, would be valued at just $0.50 per square foot.
Delegate Tim Hugo (R-Fairfax), who sponsored the bill said, “They [Arlington County] are really just gouging these folks [the two golf courses].”
“When the bill returns to the House of Delegates for full consideration with the Senate amendment, I urge all Democrats and Republicans to vote against this golf course giveaway,” said candidate de Ferranti. If the bill reaches Governor Northam and he vetoes it, a two-thirds majority vote in the House of Delegates and Senate would be necessary to override it.
“HB 1204 is both bad for Arlington and a limitation on local control that raises concerns regarding consistency with the Dillon Rule and Virginia law. I ask Legislators and, if the bill reaches his desk, Governor Northam, to stand with Arlington’s representatives in Richmond and the vast majority of Democrats across the Commonwealth, to stop this unfair and unnecessary giveaway to wealthy businesses who don’t need it.”
Under next year’s budget, Arlington County will already be forced to cut services, with $20 million in cuts proposed in the County Manager’s budget to street paving, energy efficiency programs, planning for Lee Highway, flat funding for affordable housing and $16.5 million in cuts proposed to Arlington County Public Schools, including school psychologists and social workers and increased class sizes. This additional reduction in revenue will lead to further cuts this year and in the years to come.
“Arlingtonians are rightly outraged by this legislation, which will result in a cut in services for middle class Arlingtonians this year and tighter budgets in the years to come. This is exactly the type of action that runs counter to Arlington values and leads to disillusionment with Richmond,” said candidate de Ferranti. “We must act to make sure the legislature and the Governor stop this bill.”
To write the Governor and ask him to veto House Bill 1204 if it reaches his desk, go to https://governor.virginia.gov/constituent-services/Communicating-with-the-governors-office.