Letters to the Editor: August 2 – 8, 2012

August 2, 2012 2:30 PM0 comments
No Impending Bankruptcy Here but Needy Schools

Editor,

Mr. Kaylin voted against giving FC City Schools a larger portion of the unexpected surplus because of the financial storm clouds in Europe? He also mentioned the bankruptcies in California. I assume we don’t have a Falls Church bankuptcy pending but we certainly have an under funded school system that seems to have cooperated with the City government during the recent financial issue.

The quality of the FC school system is one of the reasons our property resale values have not fallen as much as other communities. No business in the world sustains itself without remaining technologically competitive. I worry about lack of vision when I see this kind of “good enough” attitude about the need for technologies in schools.

I encourage the council to allocate more funds to the school system’s needs.

Jan Hertzsch

Falls Church

 

Prudent Financial Management Helps Protect Our Schools

Editor,

Councilman Ron Peppe wrote on FCNP.com: “The $1.4 million school carry over is an item on the revenue side, not the expense side. It goes into the pot of all revenue but is then spent, along with the rest of the revenue, as specified on the expense side. There is no pot of unallocated money on the expense side except for the contingency reserve, which is around $150,000.”

Mr. Peppe has turned what is commonly accepted as prudent financial management of taxpayers funds on its head and in doing so risks eroding community support for one of the most crucial institutions in our children’s lives–their schools.

Each year, for the last several years, funding provided by the citizens of Falls Church and authorized by the City Council that have not be used during the school year have been carried forward by the school board.

Call the repository where the $1.4 million was placed what you will–a fund balance, a carry over or as Mr. Peppe describes it, additive to “a pot of all revenue.”

But he clearly misspeaks when he contends these monies are “spent” and therein lies a financial management issue. Since the funds are not returned to the City at the end of the fiscal year but rather lie unused in the school board’s accounts, the Council then must fund the next year’s school budget without the benefit of those funds–or in the current case $1.4 million.

That means, for this next fiscal year, the Council faces this financial dichotomy: It can include the $1.4 million in the School Board’s operating budget for 2014 or it can allow the school board to continue to keep the money in its “pot” and face the immediate reality of starting the budget making process with $1.4 million less than it should have if the funds were returned to the city and not carried forward.

What Mr. Peppe does not seem to understand or appreciate is that prudent financial management–on many levels–actually protects the schools and the children it serves.

Sam Mabry

Falls Church


Why Does FCNP Lament Lack of ‘Mosaic’ in F.C.?

Editor,

I am stunned to see that the News-Press laments the lack of massive development in the City similar to Merrifield’s Mosaic district. As a business owner of almost 16 years here and new resident of the City I have a significant interest in the its well being. The only people I see benefitting from such a large scale development here are developers and large corporations. The losers would be the current businesses and residents. What makes this community special would be lost. If I wanted to live and work in such a community as the FCNP fantasizes about I would move business and residence to Tyson’s Corner.

David Urban

Falls Church

 

U.S. Must Move Back to Railways From Trucking

Editor,

Tom Whipple gives an update on Peak Oil and begs comment on the trucking component in the solution set. Has Mr. Whipple any idea of the fact we have dismantled about two-thirds of rail mileage since 1950?

U.S. Rail Map Atlas volumes can be obtained from a British firm, spv.co.uk and refresh planners’ recollection of the U.S. legacy rail footprint.

Trucks are indispensable as things stand now; in an energy emergency era we must give back much of the trucking cargo to railways. Dormant rail branch lines must be systematically rebuilt to assure food and requisite cargo continues to be delivered. Reformed U.S. Army/Guard rail logistics units are going to help rebuild of priority railroad lines to agricultural and manufacturing districts now lacking rail link.

Renewable energy should grow with a branch railroad rebuild. See “Suntrain Transportation Inc. and, “Retail Railways” for a compendium of methodologies for sustainable local economic communities.

Gunnar Henrioulle

Via the Internet 

 


Letters to the Editor may be submitted to letters@fcnp.com or via our online form here. Letters should be limited to 350 words and may be edited for content, clarity and length. To view the FCNP’s letter and submission policy, please click here.

 

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