Stephanie Lundquist-Arora | October 10, 2023
(Washington Examiner) — Voters across Fairfax County received a flyer last week supporting the $435 million bond referendum for its schools on the ballot for the 2023 election. The flyer came not from the Fairfax Democrats but from Fairfax County Public Schools.
Aside from covering the costs of the election material and the postage, the 181,000-student public school district also used student data for the mailers. The return address was the school the child residing in the house attends. The child’s name was listed under the voter’s name as the addressee on the envelope. Basically, the school district is manipulating voters into opening the envelope because they suspect there would be information, perhaps an interim report, about their children coming from their schools.
The bond referendum is arguably a partisan matter. The Fairfax Democrats explicitly support the bond referendum on their sample ballot. Meanwhile, many Republicans have concerns about the waste occurring in the district’s budget and the $100 million of unspent COVID-19 funds from the federal government.
Fairfax County’s residents are also hesitant about the pricey bond referendum because our taxes have skyrocketed in the last few years. My vehicle, for example, was worth more in 2022 than when I purchased it new in 2018, according to our local government’s assessment. With combined rate and assessment increases, the property tax on it went up by 45% between 2019 and 2022. The same is true for houses. The assessment value of our house increased by 30% from 2020 to 2023. In real terms, the monthly property tax differential in this time period is enough for an additional car payment.
In the face of these astronomical tax increases and its already inflated $3.5 billion budget, Fairfax County’s public school district administrators want even more money. Not only is the school district sending partisan mailers with regard to the 2023 election, but administrators also provide support for the bond initiative and sample ballots on the district’s website .
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