Chairman Sharon Bulova today moved a measure that will increase employee salaries by 2 percent, the first for Fairfax County employees since Fiscal Year 2009. The board in April had set aside funds to increase employee compensation by 1.5 percent, but because of unexpected savings Chairman Bulova was able to increase that adjustment.
â€œThis increase is a well-deserved recognition of the hard work and sacrifices our County employees have endured and continue to endure as we recover from the Great Recession,â€ Bulova said. â€œI am confident that our workforce will continue to identify efficiencies and savings to help Fairfax County continue our recovery.â€
The increase (effective September 24) was approved as part of the budget process known as â€œcarryover,â€ which deals with the balance of funds at the end of the fiscal year. In addition to responsible and conservative annual budgeting, higher than expected sales tax revenue, the resolution of a lawsuit that would have impacted the County, and the easing of an unfunded federal mandate led to a $104 million positive balance for FY2011, which ended in June.
â€œAs budget chairman for the last 20 years, I am proud that we have been able to meet rising demand on services in the face of declining revenue while keeping tax bills steady. I am also proud of our County employees, who made across the board cuts and found ways to do more with less during these tough economic times,â€ Bulova said. â€œCounty employees deserve much of the credit for Fairfax County weathering this economic storm.â€
In addition to the compensation increase, FY2011 carryover funds will be used for continuing the ongoing update of the county software system (FOCUS Project) and funding toward a new public safety headquarters. More than $28 million will be placed in a reserve fund to help prepare for FY2013, which we know will be challenging. The County Executive has also been authorized to use part of this reserve for countywide cleanup and recovery efforts related to the floods of September 8.