My Side of the Fence

The danger isn't going too far. It's that we don't go far enough.

The forecast

The Council had a work session tonight to setup the budget process for this fall by establishing a forecast.  The forecast is what the City Manager uses to develop his budget that he presents in February.  The forecast isn’t binding but it does set expectations. 

The presiding philosophy at this point is to hold residential real estate bills, on average, the same as they were last year.  Holding the line on real estate taxes will result in shortfalls to both the City and School budget in this budget year but I feel that this is appropriate and manageable.  For next year, we are expecting reasonably large shortfalls in sales, meals and BPOL taxes so the forecast is far from certain.

For my part, I know that economic conditions are not making life easy for people but philosophically I’m not ready to cut millions of dollars from the school budget, stop funding the stuff we do in Old Town or give up on Manassas Next.  We have to be ready to emerge from this recession strong in order to compete with surrounding jurisdictions.  Closing the Candy Factory, Museum or shelving our economic development efforts only hamstrings our efforts and sets us back 5-10 years.  Fundamentally, I’m jst not there yet. 

Now, I’m not completely crazy.  If the economy completely falls apart, we’ll do what needs to be done but I don’t feel we’re there yet.  Given the way that things are going, this could change by next week…:)


  1. Cindy Brookshire

    October 24, 2008 at 10:15 am

    I was in the Candy Factory Thursday morning for the Mayor’s Small Business Awards Breakfast, and just seeing former Mayor Gillum and his wife honored, and Kris Spitler receiving an award in Loy Harris’ honor, makes me realize how much people have done to make Manassas what it is today. I remember when Sally Lay was running the Center for the Arts out of the brown house on Grant Ave and the young people were rehearsing Pied Piper Theatre plays in empty storefronts, moving from place to place; when SERVE was cramped in the white house next to Church of the Brethren and there was no BARN ministry or many of the other non profits helping people. We all need to pitch in more of our time and talents, if not our pocketbooks. Come to the Empty Bowls dinner at Manassas Baptist tonight (Oct. 24) from 4 to 8 pm and break bread with your neighbors while you help SERVE. Come to the Neighborhood Conference on Nov. 15 and find out what you can do to make your neighborhoods better. Register at Bring a can of food for SERVE.

  2. Cindy,
    I can remember such things too, and I also remember when the community got involved in providing public safety. Both the volunteer rescue squad and volunteer fire department badly need members. Lack of community involvement in being rescue or fire volunteers is causing large increases in City budget to hire more paid rescue and fire workers. There is little in this life more satisfying than saving someone’s life or property, so anyone that can help please stop by either station.

  3. Letitia Anderson

    November 12, 2008 at 5:24 pm


Comments are closed.