David Ross - your representative in 2015
Thanks for taking the time to research your choices for the Courtland District's Board of Supervisors (BOS) seat. I would ask that you would review the entire web site - but if you are short on time - click here
I have lived in rural Spotsylvania, Virginia for over 8 years and in Stafford County for 5 years prior to that. I love it here as the rural atmosphere reminds me of my childhood home, Iowa.
I am running for the BOS position as the Republican Party's nominee - your Social and Fiscal Conservative. If you believe our Country is heading in the wrong direction, then you and I are on the same sheet of music.
I support residents' property rights, lower taxes, smaller government, streamlining educational bureaucracy while increasing education quality, and building a professional job base in Spotsylvania in addition to retail jobs. I'm not accepting campaign donations so that I will have zero conflict of interest, real or perceived, in representing and listening to the citizens of the Courtland District.
I encourage you to research your two choices for Courtland BOS. I would not want you to vote for me unless you knew how I would represent you.
As you explore my website, I think you will agree that I will be your best choice . . . and have a proven record of representing Courtland Residents . . . to represent you, if you are looking for a fiscal and social conservative voice on the Board of Supervisors.
If you would like to help or if you have any issues or questions - please contact me by clicking here
Answers to accusations - if you happened to have heard any . . .
#1 (taxes) - Taxes remain low! In 2011, I promised not to raise residential or personal property taxes above the equalized rate. In 2012, I voted for the first residential property tax that was BELOW the equalized rate since the 1970's. And we lowered it again in 2014. Even in the face of declining personal property values, I have kept my promise and never voted for a personal property tax rate that would raise the average taxpayer's bill. .
It’s true that the concept of an equalization rate is not as well understood regarding the personal property tax as the real property tax but it is the same concept. Ask yourself which you would rather have, paying more taxes at a lower rate or less tax at a higher rate? A tax increase is when people pay more, not when they pay less at a higher rate.
To make this point - let's say your car is currently assessed at $5,000 and the tax rate is 10 dollars per 100 of assessed value - = 5,000/100 X10 = $500 that you pay in taxes on the car.
Now let's say your same car is reappraised the following year to be worth $100 - (this is an exageration to show how it works - but let's say a new technology came out making your car worth very little) The tax rate is set below the new equalized rate - at a rate of 99 dollars 100 of assessed value. THE RATE JUST WENT UP from 10 to 99!!! But wait - you pay 100/100 X 99 = $99 dollars instead of the prior $500. This is a tax decrease - don't you agree.
#2 (BPOL) - I fought against the BPOL tax! In 2012, I voted to increase the threshold for filing the BPOL tax from $200k to $750k. For businesses under $750k, no BPOL tax is required. I voted against a small decrease in the BPOL tax rate only because it would have unfairly increased the personal property tax. The BPOL threshold increase keeps $300k annually in the pockets of small business owners.
Link to BPOL minutes: http://www.spotsylvania.va.us/filestorage/21027/29250/4652/4656/4690/13709/Min_061212.pdf
In 2012 I voted to raise the threshold at which companies begin to pay BPOL from $200K to $750K, reducing the tax for many businesses to zero and cutting it for everyone else. My opponent sites a vote last year on tiny cuts in a few of the BPOL rates in exchange for two more cents on the personal property rate as Ross breaking his promise to cut BPOL. A little analogy: If you promise to mow the lawn and do so on Monday, when you don’t do it again on Tuesday, by my opponent’s logic you have broken your promise. Furthermore, as this vote was a direct trade-off between BPOL and personal property, my opponent contradicts his criticism in #1.
#3 (conflicts of interest) - I am not accepting campaign contributions! My campaign is funded 100% from my own personal finances. I recently adjusted my filing status with the county because I could see that might spending might exceed the previous cap I was under. No paid conflicts of interest here!
Suggestions that individuals who believe in my candidacy volunteer their own time to knock on doors etc. creates a conflict of interest is not worthy of notice. I trust voters to recognize how little sense that makes. Ironically, my opponent raises the fact that as the Republican nominee I will receive help from Republican volunteers. I say “ironically” because Mr. Kingman attended the Republican mass meeting at which I was nominated and signed a pledge to support the nominee. Who’s breaking promises?
Also, ironically my opponent has a paid consultant – check VPAP.ORG – who was also the head of the Rappahannock Baseball Initiative and at times represented a minor league baseball team with County Staff and other supervisors. See any conflict here?
I have also used graphics on this website that were in the public domain. It was not coordinated with anyone.
#4 (realtor endorsement) - Similar to #3, I was endorsed by the Fredericksburg Area Association of Realtors and my opponent suggests this as another conflict of interest. I did not accept money from them. Who they endorse is their choice. My opponent will have to answer for his defamation of realtors made under this point.
#5 (not funding our schools) This year – there was a 900K gap between what the schools were asking for and what Spotsylvania had to give. Dr. Paul Trampe came up with a win / win idea that would have fully funded the 900K delta by paying a bonus (in the same amount as the raise) in July and then implementing the actual raise in January of 2016.
This motion that I fully supported by my vote - would have funded the 900K gap and reduced our personal property tax by 3 cents.
This motion (to fully fund the gap) failed – by a vote of 5 to 2 with Dr. Trampe and myself in the 2 – fully supporting the request – provided gap.
Even with Dr. Trampe and my supporting the full funding and not getting the 4 votes to do so, this is what Spotsylvania schools did receive this year with the budget. Our total student population this 2015 - 2016 also decreased by 139 students from last year.
Highlights of our current year’s school budget include:
- Larger budget, $2,800,000.00 - ($2.8M) greater operating budget than last year.
- Hiring of 59 additional employees to the payroll
- A 3% pay raise for all employees
- Pay increases for our substitute teachers
- A $25 reduction in the athletic fee
- A 5% stipend increase for coaches and academic advisers
- Creation of a middle school debate sponsor stipend
- Creation of a James Farmer coordinator stipend
- Pay increase for long-term certified substitute teachers to $170/day
- Pay increase for long-term uncertified sub-teachers to $120/day
- Pay increase for interpreters (at levels 1 and 2) from $15 to $20/hr
- Pay increase for bus aides from $8.17 to $9.50/hr
I hope this doesn't sound like I've done anything but . . .FULLY SUPPORT OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM.
#6 (clean campaign) - I've been honest and open! In the midst of mudslinging and lies from my opponent, I've maintained a clean and honest campaign. The truth always wins. If you have a concern, I'm here for you: 571.594.0814.
paid for and authorized by Ross4Courtland