Bills allowing residents of planned communities such as Reston to claim state income tax deductions for their property owners' association fees were killed today by a House committee at the urging of the Fairfax County government and others.
Del. Kenneth Plum (D-Fairfax) told the House Finance Committee that homeowners in Reston, Brandermill in Chesterfield County, Kings Mill in James City County, and other planned communities paid dues and fees to purchase services that local governments ordinarily provide. But the two bills were rejected by identical 16-to-1 margins.
Del. Warren G. Stambaugh (D-Arlington) said that residents of Reston and Brandermill lived there by choice, and got the same police and fire protection and other services that Fairfax and Chesterfield provide other residents.
Del. Vivian Watts (D-Fairfax) also criticized Plum's argument that homeowner association services entitled residents to tax deductions. If it were valid, she asked, why shouldn't individual homeowners throughout Fairfax be entitled to deductions for private trash removal and water and sewer fees?
Doreen Williams, a spokeswoman for Fairfax County, told the committee the Board of Supervisors had voted 8 to 0 to oppose Plum's legislation. "We have something in the vicinity of 5,000 homeowners' associations that would come under the purview of this bill," she said.