F.C. Council Mulls $2 Million Budget “Placeholder” for Library

At its budget work session tonight, the Falls Church City Council considered adding a $2 million “placeholder” for a potential property aquisition to expand the Mary Riley Styles Public Library, as recommended by the Planning Commission last month but not included in the City Manager’s recommended FY 2010 City budget.

The item would be contained in the “capital improvement projects” (CIP) portion of the budget, and would not be funded for at least a year. All but $113,000 of City taxpayer funds has already been removed from the coming fiscal year’s CIP budget, down from $2.7 million projected a year ago, due to the tough economic times. The City’s Chief Financial Officer John Tuohy said that if the City does not start to show net revenue growth in the next five years, meeting its currently-projected funding needs would create “gaps” between revenues and expenditures growing from $2.1 million in 2011, to $5.6 million in 2012, to $8.3 million in 2013 and $14.2 million in 2014. The City Council will continue work session deliberations on the budget later this week, with its next official public hearing and business meeting on April 13, prior to its final approval of the budget, and a new tax rate, on April 27.