New Tax District for Reston?

February 21st, 2014

Reston May See a New Tax District
At the February 11th Board of Supervisors’ meeting, the Board voted 7 to 2 to approve a new master plan for Reston. I voted against the plan because yet again, I believe the plan ignores our priorities when it comes to where developer contributions are spent. Not too dissimilar to the Tysons plan, this plan results in over $700M in transportation needs that come with the increased density. It is my fear that just as we did in Tysons, these requirements will be funded by a new tax on the residents and businesses in Reston. I believe that much more of these transportation requirements should have been funded by developer contributions from the increased density instead of many requirements in the plan. A new tax district in Reston, coupled with already rising tolls on the Dulles Toll Road, will adversely impact the residents and businesses of Reston. This is something that could have been avoided if we had focused more of our developer contributions on transportation.

 

Reducing our Facilities Cost
At the Board meeting on February 11th, the Board supported my request to look at reducing the county’s facility cost – one of the county’s largest expenses – by further exploring the use of hoteling. The concept of hoteling in the workplace, or providing office space to employees on an as-needed basis, dates back to the early 1990s. The Board will also look at increasing our use of teleworking as another tool to reduce facility cost.
Hoteling is used by major companies throughout the country, and even in the federal government. A recent report from the GSA, where hoteling was put into place a few years ago, showed that a $600,000 savings was generated by cutting office space in half, eliminating 15,000 square feet of office space at GSA using the hoteling concept. Similar experiences have taken place at the Treasury Department, the Patent and Trademark Office, and the Department of Homeland Security.
Fairfax County is no stranger to hoteling as it is currently used for some field based employees. My recommendation would look to see if the County’s hoteling practice could be expanded and reduce our facilities cost.
With more than 3.5 million square feet of space in our government buildings and more than 600,000 square feet we spend $14 million per year to rent. Our facilities costs are second only to personnel costs in our budget. Looking into savings in such a large part of our budget is a no-brainer and I look forward to the results of the study


Paid for by Friends of Pat Herrity