Senator Dick Black Pushes Waterford Pork

February 15, 2016 in Virginia Budget, Waterford Foundation

Oink Oink.  It could not be more clear:

The General Assembly, and, by extension, state agencies, may not, make grants that are tantamount to gifts of taxpayer dollars to charitable institutions devoted to land conservation (http://www.tax.virginia.gov/laws-rules-decisions/attorney-generals-opinion/11-089).

Senator Richard Black’s website charges; “The General Assembly has begun hiding taxes and fees in the biennial budget. This is dishonest and must not continue.” Agreed!
(http://www.senatorblack.com/Issues/Taxes.aspx)
waterpig
Folks that know Dick Black are up in arms over his current “Dear Constituent” letter publicizing that he is working for funds (hundreds of thousands of dollars) for the Waterford Foundation, via a “budget item”. Dick Black, a purported property rights and liberty advocate is part of the reason constituents are fed up with political flip-flopping.

The Waterford Foundation benefits extensively as a non-profit and does not pay real estate taxes on numerous buildings under the VA Code, § 58.1-3607.  This exemption is dubious at best. The Virginia Constitution forbids the General Assembly from making “any appropriation of public funds, personal property, or real estate . . . to any charitable institution which is not owned or controlled by the Commonwealth.” The purpose of Article IV, § 16, as its plain language indicates, is “to prohibit the appropriation of public funds . . . for charitable purposes.”

The Waterford Foundation, Inc., states their mission is to “preserve the historic buildings and the open spaces of the National Historic Landmark of Waterford, Virginia”.

Yet, they also:

  • operate a concert business,
  • operate a wedding business,
  • operate an event business,
  • hold various fair-type consignment events,
  • sell tickets for home and garden tours,
  • rent out buildings,
  • are involved in an Internet service business,
  • and have bought, subdivided and sold off numerous building lots throughout Waterford.

Taxpayers should know how significant pork is buried in the budget and is Dick Black’s proposed “gift” even lawful?

(more to come…)

Geary Higgins Bending the Rules? (Waterford Foundation Pork)

February 16, 2016 in Board of Supervisors, Budget

Supervisor Geary Higgins with his hungry pet.

Supervisor Geary Higgins with his hungry pet.

In addition to Senator Dick Black looking to gift hundreds of thousands of tax dollars to the Waterford Foundation, Inc., Supervisor Geary Higgins (R-Catoctin)

has reportedly  “indicated he would work with Economic Development Director Buddy Rizer on tapping into hotel tax funds available for tourism uses” to presumably pay off outstanding bills for the Waterford Foundation.  With assets over $6,000,000, the assistance may be better used elsewhere.  (http://www.loudounnow.com/2015/12/09/waterford-residents-decry-possible-sale-of-foundation-properties/)

It is unclear how Supervisor Higgins has acquired the authority to seek an appropriation of tax dollars to benefit a select organization without transparency and accountability to the public.

It is unclear:

• How the organization is governed?
• How the organization spends its money?
• How truthfully the organization represents themselves in the public sphere?
• How willing the organization is to disclose basic information about itself?

Supervisor Higgins recently served as the honorary chair for the Waterford Foundation’s Sweetheart Ball (individual tickets $150.00 each) and has been recognized by the Waterford Foundation as a significant donor.  Supervisor Higgins’ own son-in-law served on the Waterford Foundation’s board and he and his wife own property in the historic village.

Black’s Law Dictionary describes a conflict of interest as being in connection with public officials and fiduciaries and their relationship to matters of private interest or gain to them or family members.  Supervisor Higgins should be wary of conflicts of interests.  Dick Black should be wary of unconstitutional gifts.  They are, though, entitled to cozy relationships; but when diverting tax dollars to friends, the public trust is eroded and replaced with a permanent tarnish.

Stand for something… and walk out, Virginia.

May 15, 2013 in Budget, Taxes

As many of you know, we’ve just recently had the largest tax increase in the Commonwealth’s history foisted upon us. In a move more akin to our most liberal governors and other politicians like Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama, Governor McDonnell and his cronies waited until the waning hours of the General Assembly this past year to sneak in this giant tax increase.

This coming weekend we have an opportunity to send a message to Republicans in Virginia who support bigger government and higher taxes. Governor McDonnell is scheduled to speak. When this happens, we ask that you simply take a break – stand up and leave. Go get something to drink, go to the restroom, take a short walk and enjoy the beautiful weather… just quietly get up and leave for a few minutes.

Show Governor McDonnell what you think of his empty promise for lower taxes and fiscal prudence by giving him an empty room.

Spread the news!

Here’s a link to our walkout flier… Please feel free to download it and pass along to your friends, colleagues, and post on other sites. Walkout Flier

If you wish to link to it on our site, here is the URL for you to copy and use: http://www.loudountaxpayer.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/walkout.pdf

Welcome to the new LoudounTaxpayer.com!

April 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

Open SignYou may have noticed a few upgrades to the site since your last visit. We’ve changed our technology, upgraded our visual design, and are in the midst of integrating a number of additional enhanced services to benefit our visitors, authors, and members of the Loudoun Taxpayers for Accountable Government team. Read the rest of this entry →

Chairman York Goes Ape Over Rail

May 11, 2012 in Board of Supervisors, Metro, Taxes

Supervisor York on the Silver Line: "Let's just not build schools."

Supervisor York on the Silver Line: “Let’s just not build schools.”

Supervisor Clarke asks a simple question, “How much is this going to cost the Loudoun Tax payer?” Chairman York fails to make the distinction between cost and reasonable cost. It seems that Chairman York does not care. This is outrageous, it is the Loudoun taxpayer’s money, Mr York.

Chairman York then tries to demean Supervisor Clarke by trying to compare building a school with paying WMATA and its Union forever. Mr. York not only failed, but he made a fool of himself to boot. Read the rest of this entry →

Leesburg “Get to Know Metro” Town Hall Rally 5/17 @ 7:00pm

May 1, 2012 in Metro

Next Town Hall meeting:

What Metro Means to Loudoun

The Board of Supervisors will decide soon on whether or not to make an open-ended financial commitment to Metro and if they decide to go ahead, it is final!

The purpose of these meetings will be to encourage the public to get informed and learn how to let their voice be heard before the votes are cast at the beginning of July 2012. Read the rest of this entry →

Lovettsville “Get to Know Metro” Town Hall Rally 4/11 @ 7pm

April 4, 2012 in Metro

Town Hall meeting:

What Metro Means to Loudoun

The Board of Supervisors will decide soon on whether or not to make an open-ended financial commitment to Metro and if they decide to go ahead, it is final!

The purpose of these meetings will be to encourage the public to get informed and learn how to let their voice be heard before the votes are cast at the beginning of July 2012. Read the rest of this entry →

Board Lowers Tax Rate, Tax Bills

April 4, 2012 in Board of Supervisors, Taxes

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has adopted the fiscal year 2013 budget and has lowered the real property tax rate for 2012 to $1.235: a decrease of 5 cents from the 2011 rate. The average homeowner tax bill will also drop by $154 to $4,961.

This is quite a contrast from the previous Democrat-majority Board. In their first year in office, they raised the tax rate an unprecedented 18 cents, which resulted in increase of $457 in the average homeowner tax bill: the 3rd largest tax increase ever. They raised taxes at a time when the economy was in a recession, housing values were plummeting and foreclosure rates were on the rise to historic highs. Read the rest of this entry →

Benefit Costs Main Driver of LCPS Budget Increase

February 21, 2012 in Benefits, LCPS

Benefit cost increases will account more than half of the $85 million proposed FY 2013 LCPS operating budget increase:
Rolls Royce

  • $37,241,614 – VRS rate increase
  • $6,618,600 – Group health insurance premium increase
  • $801,474 – Other fringe benefit costs

The benefits package value for an LCPS professional employee with a $60,000 salary and choosing the family health insurance plan would be $30,261! Read the rest of this entry →

Board Declines to Opt Out of HS-8 Site Contract

February 20, 2012 in Board of Supervisors, Construction Costs, LCPS

During the Loudoun Board of Supervisors meeting on February 14th, it was mentioned, as an informational item, that the board would not opt out of the $20 million NCC contract for part of the HS-8 site when the due diligence period expires on February 17th. Read the rest of this entry →