The single largest factor dictating how a local government operates is the budget; it’s probably the most important vote a school board member casts. As Supervisor Herrity’s budget aide for 5 years, I am intimately familiar with the budget, the development process, and the implications for policy discussions. Without funding, the greatest ideas are dead in the water. With funding, the worst ideas can wreak havoc, and waste your tax dollars. Both of these scenarios are unacceptable to me.
There is no doubt that Fairfax County taxpayers are willing to make investments in their community. However those investments must be spent wisely with clear goals and objectives for their use. The school board must continue to work hand-in-hand with the Board of Supervisors to ensure wise fiscal decision making. I support taking a page from the Supervisors and implementing a multi-year budget in which a forecast is laid out for the following fiscal year during the budget adoption cycle. This forecasting gives the school board and administrative staff a glimpse down the road which would help make better decisions.