It’s that time of year when the Board of Supervisors considers the Budget for the upcoming fiscal year. Once again, for ten consecutive years, property tax increases are part of the budget.

Increases in property valuations will already require businesses and homeowners to pay higher property taxes. Increasing the tax rate on top of that is a double increase.

Right now, local businesses are facing significantly increased costs for both labor and materials. Add these proposed property tax increases to the costs of inflation, increases in fees, tangible personal property taxes, taxes on vehicles, BPOL taxes, increased costs for labor and it is apparent that businesses are facing significant challenges.

There needs to be a recommitment from the Board of Supervisors to Fairfax County’s goal of having a robust commercial base and creating a climate that encourages business location and growth. We note that during the past year, the percentage of commercial properties in the county has continued to decline — for a variety of reasons — but let us ensure that this decline is not due to an unfriendly business environment.

As business people, we know that business taxes are an important component of keeping the cost of living in Fairfax County affordable. The costs of commercial property tax increases will ultimately be passed to consumers making Fairfax County even less affordable for residents. While cuts have been made in County operations more reductions are needed to keep businesses viable and Fairfax County affordable.

Click here to see the letter the Chamber sent to the Board of Supervisors.