Friday, February 20, 2009

Fiscal Discipline?

Readers will want to check out a letter that appeared this week in the Alexandria Gazette Packet from Councilmen Rob Krupicka and Justin Wilson.

In the same week that the City was bracing for an unprecedented staff layoff, the Council was asked to waive $20,000 in permitting fees for the Boys and Girls Club, located at Princess and N. Payne Streets, which is in the throes of a major renovation. City Manager Jim Hartmann had advised against waiving the fees, citing the current budget crisis and the precedent this would set for Alexandria's many other non-profit organizations.

In the end, the Council voted 5-2 to give the Club a $5,000 non-competitive "grant."

FYI, Mayor William D. Euille is a Boys and Girls Club board member who frequently plays basketball at the facility. He noted in his testimony that the Club is one of the few non-profits in Alexandria that owns its own property. What he didn't state is that although the Club is exempt from property tax, its building and land at 401 N. Payne Street is currently assessed at nearly $2 million.