Falls Church City Manager Harry E. Wells yesterday called for a 3 percent increase in property taxes to fund the city's $13.3 million budget for fiscal 1984.
Well's proposed budget, up $925,000 over the current year, will be given its first public hearing before the City Council March 28. It calls for a 7.5 percent increase in general operating funds and a 2.1 percent increase in school spending.
The proposed 3-cent increase in the present property tax rate of 96 cents per $100 of home value, when coupled with a 5.3 percent increase in the home assessments this year, would add about $86 to the average homeowner's property tax bill, according to City Assessor William De Lanoy.
Falls Church for several years has had the lowest property tax rate in Northern Virginia. Even if a 99-cent property tax rate is approved, the city may continue to have the lowest rate, because Arlington is considering raising its present rate by as much as 3 cents. Arlington's 98-cent property tax rate is the second lowest in the area.
The average detached house in Falls Church this year is valued at $111,000, compared to $105,500 last year, said De Lanoy.
No increases in personal property taxes or in other local taxes and fees were proposed by Wells.
The city manager recommended $610,000 in public works improvements, including $200,000 for street maintenance projects, $72,200 for about four acres of parkland in Four Mile Run Park, $50,400 for improvemments at Cavalier Trail Park and $69,000 in improvements to the city Community Center.
Wells said in his budget message he is "not comfortable with the proposed funding plan for fiscal 1984" because of the uncertainties over Metro transit costs, federal revenue sharing funds and other issues. He noted that the city's share of Metro's bus and subway operating subsidy is projected to increase by $190,000, or 53.5 percent next year.