Here’s The CNN/Money Ranking PWC Doesn’t Want You To Hear About

Prince William County often likes to tout a CNN/Money ranking that lists it high on job creation (a ranking that doesn’t take into account the quality of the jobs being created, which are mostly in the lower-paying service industry sector.)  Well, here’s another study from the same source that they don’t want you to hear about.

According to a new CNN/Money ranking, PWC has the second highest property taxes in Northern Virginia as a percentage of home price, only behind Loudoun County.

Indeed, Loudoun County has the highest in the Commonwealth (1.09%) followed by Richmond City (1.08%), Roanoke City (1.03%), Newport News City (1.02%), and then Prince William County and Norfolk City (0.97%). PWC’s other neighbors are as follows: Fairfax clocks in at 0.94%, Fauquier at 0.77% and Stafford at 0.75%.

Interesting to note that the bulk of jurisdictions that PWC is in league with here are cities and not counties. Yet, we are now hearing rumblings that this still isn’t enough and that taxes may have to be raised to pay for even more spending.  Perhaps if our commercial-to-residential tax base ratio wasn’t so pathetically screwed up, we wouldn’t find ourselves in this boat.


7 thoughts on “Here’s The CNN/Money Ranking PWC Doesn’t Want You To Hear About

  1. Jim – that ratio is highly fallacious in actual dollar terms. Some extreme right-wing people use it as a base for discussing tax levels. Simply put, the $300,000 house in PWC would pay taxes of .97% X 300,000, or $2810. The same house placed in Fairfax would be worth $350,000; taxes in Fairfax would be $350,000 X .94%, or $3290 – considerably higher. The same house (as all houses in Farfax) pays enormously higher taxes as a percent!!!

    1. If you were to apply the PWC rate to the $350,000 home in Fairfax, they would be paying $3,395 instead of the $3,290 you cite. (And actually, 0.97% of $300,000 is $2910, not $2810 as you wrote. Fairfax’s 0.94% rate would be $2820 on $300,000.)

      Since home values fluctuate by jurisdiction, the percent of the home value is the most accurate measure for purposes of comparison. The issue of home values is a whole other ball of wax.

    2. Right……….a ball of wax it is………but normally the same house in Fairfax generates more dollars in taxes and that is what is most relevant in my humble opinion!!!

  2. The best method for comparisons in my humblest of opinions is to compare the dollar amount of taxes paid in each jurisdiction to the number of people served. This would show that Fiarfax pays much more than PWC…in fact, PWC is usually among the lowest………..reflective of crappyiness in services……….

  3. I would venture to say that you are both making correct statements. I agree with Riley that how much we are paying in taxes based on the value of our homes is the best comparative measure. The lower prices in PWC are offset by the necessity to drive much farther through congested traffic to get to decent jobs, which are largely not extant in PWC. If people could afford a higher-priced Fairfax County home to be closer to good jobs they would buy them and do so. The taxes-as-a-percent-of-price measure reflects the ability of people to pay taxes. Riley is also correct in stating that job creation in PWC is mostly low-wage work that most people don’t want. Swim is correct about the crappiness of services, i.e. highest student-to-teacher classroom ratios in the state, and out-of-control residential development making some of the worst congestion in the nation even worse. I put 99.9 percent of the blame for this situation at the feet of a Board of Supervisors that acts as a subsidiary of the residential developers, and a senior County management that swings between incompetence and opaqueness in trying to conceal from taxpayers what the aforementioned board is doing.

  4. That PW is worse than Fairfax, which has been under Democratic rule since (iirc) 1995, is rather depressing.

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