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Letter: Residents will have to take action to get tax relief

'As a Fairfax County resident, you have three choices: grin and bear it, take action or move.'

To the editor: In reference to the lead story in April 11 GazetteLeader – “Fairfax Government Gets Scolding on Spending Spree” – I offer a few thoughts.

1. Although I applaud the scolding from the McLean Citizens Association, it is highly unlikely to have any effect on a Fairfax County government that has but one Republican on the 10-seat Board of Supervisors. Plus, all 12 Fairfax County School Board seats, along with the county’s entire General Assembly positions, are held by Democrats.

2. I have “seen this movie” before, having moved from Massachusetts to Virginia in 1990. Massachusetts was, and still is, controlled entirely by the Democratic Party. Those leaders heard plenty of scoldings relative to overtaxation and spending, but they all fell on deaf ears. In 1980, the citizens rose up with a statewide ballot measure called Proposition 2 ½. It placed strict limits on the amount of revenue a community can raise through real- and personal-property taxes. A main component of Proposition 2 ½ limits increases on real property taxes to 2.5 percent a year.

In a jurisdiction controlled entirely by Democrats, it will take citizen action to limit overspending in Fairfax County. If the tax people will start voting with their feet, and move.

That has started. Fairfax County hasn’t seen a population loss since the 1830 census, but it’s losing population now. Over the past three years, Fairfax County has lost population at a faster rate (about 2%) than any other Virginia county (the city of Virginia Beach is close).

As a Fairfax County resident, you have three choices: grin and bear it, take action or move.

Dave Berndtson, Vienna