|Meals tax supporters outside the BoS meeting room.|
The two supervisors who voted against the meals tax referendum are Pat Herrity (Springfield) and Linda Smyth (Providence).
The Fairfax County Department of Management and Budget estimates that $99 million in revenue would be generated from a 4 percent meals tax in the first year.
Approximately $3 million of those funds would go back to restaurants and businesses to offset the costs of implementing the meals tax. Of the remaining $96 million, 70 percent would go to FCPS and 30 percent would be used for county services, capital improvements, and property tax relief.
The BoS does not have the authority to implement a meals tax unless it is approved by voters.
Since Virginia is a Dillon Rule state, Fairfax County has limited authority to diversify its revenue stream, and about 80 percent of its general fund budget comes from real estate and property taxes.
If a meals tax is passed by voters, it would apply to tourists, commuters, and travelers, as well as Fairfax County residents who choose to dine out. It is estimated that non-county residents eating in Fairfax County would generate 28 percent of the total revenue from a meals tax.
A meals tax currently exists in the towns of Herndon and Vienna, in the cities of Fairfax, Falls Church, and Alexandria, and in Arlington County.