The Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations has called on the Board of Supervisors to trim the School Board's fiscal 1978 budget by $1.6 million and to use any surplus in the current fiscal 1977 Fairfax County budget to provide tax relief for county citizens.
The federation has calculated that by the end of the current fiscal year there will be a $9.8 million surplus in the county budget, instead of the $2.7 million projected by the county office of management and budget.
If the federation is correct, and the surplus is more than $9 million, then the county property tax increase imposed last May was double what was necessary, according to Steve Farrar, FCFCA finance committee chairman.
The major differences between the federation's calculations and OMB's lie in the areas of real estate tax collection estimates and the amount of public assistance funding coming to the county from the state, according to a finance committee report issued to the federation last Thursday.
Ilene Blake, director of Fairfax County OMB, said she had seen the federation's finance report.
"But we have been so busy with our fiscal 1978 budget, that we have not had time to thoroughly study the report," he said.
"When we submitted our mid-year budget review to the board, projecting a surplus of $2.7 million, we said there was a possibility it could be more. But we have made our estimate as close as we feel comfortable," said Blake.
"The problem with large year-end surpluses is that they tend to get spent in supplemental appropriations instead of returning to the taxpayers," said Farrar.
Two years ago, when the county's budget surplus exceeded $13 million, the federation asked for a tax cut and the County Board reduced utility taxes.
Closing four under-utilized elementary schools in the county, reducing the number of assistant principals by 31, and closing one of the county's four area administrative offices are among the federation's suggestions for cutting $1.6 million out of the school board's $289.3 million budget for next year.
Fairfax County School Superintendent S. John Davis told the federation at its meeting last Thursday that the area offices were necessary.
"You have a school system of 35,000 youngsters. I have to have some means of evaluating what's happening in those schools," Davis said.
The federation has also suggested that the school board eliminate six intermediate guidance counselors, increase summer school tuition, and drop dining room aides in order to trim next year's budget.
In other action at its meeting last week the federation registered opposition to the use of Community Development Block Grant funds for parkland acquisition. The Fairfax County Park authority is requesting that $750,000 in CDBG funds be used for parkland acquisition along the U.S. 1 corridor.
The FCFCA, which represents the approximately 100 citizens associations in the county, passed a resolution supporting the use of federal funds to correct health and safety problems in low income neighborhoods and to provide home improvement grants and loans to stimulate rehabilitation in blighted areas.