Chesterfield would fund Powhite extension, lower real estate tax rate in proposed FY 2025 budget

chesterfield administration building scaled Cropped

Chesterfield County’s proposed $2 billion budget would cut the real estate tax rate by 1 cent and include financing for the planned Powhite Parkway extension. (BizSense file)

Chesterfield County officials have unveiled a $2 billion proposed budget for fiscal year 2025 that would allocate funding to the Powhite Parkway extension as well as knock a cent off the county’s real estate tax rate.

The pending budget features a bonds-driven package of $300 million in road projects, about half of which would be earmarked for the first phase of construction to extend Powhite to Woolridge Road from its current endpoint near its interchange with Route 288.

Chesterfield intends to issue bonds to finance the road project and would look to pay off the bonds over time with the county’s portion of tax revenue from the Central Virginia Transportation Authority, officials said at a media briefing on the budget Wednesday morning.

The CVTA was created in 2020 and finances transportation projects using sales and fuel tax proceeds, half of which is doled out annually to localities in the region. The county anticipates it will receive $30 million from the CVTA in fiscal year 2025.

“For FY 25, we’re adding a significant infusion of $300 million from our ability to utilize our 50 percent local share of CVTA revenues to support the largest infrastructure bonds ever issued in Chesterfield. The CVTA was designed to accomplish big things locally and regionally,” Chesterfield County Administrator Joe Casey said.

Ultimately, Chesterfield officials want to see the parkway extended to Hull Street Road.

Plans to finance the first phase of the Powhite Parkway extension were added to the county’s five-year capital improvements plan as part of the current budget. What’s on the table now is to actually put forward the money needed rather than wait for the funds as part of a long-range capital plan.

Other possible projects to be financed by the fiscal 2025 transportation initiative include improvements to the Route 150 and U.S. 60 interchange and extension projects on Center Pointe Parkway and Courthouse Road.

Upper Magnolia Regional Chesterfield 1

The yellow line shows the general anticipated path of the proposed extension of the Powhite Parkway.

A reduction to the county’s real estate tax rate is also proposed as part of the fiscal 2025 budget. The proposed budget would cut the real estate tax rate by 1 cent to 90 cents per $100 of assessed value.

Despite the decrease, real estate tax revenue is projected to rise as a result of higher assessments on properties, driven by rising prices in the housing market. The county anticipates it will generate $560.2 million in real estate tax revenue, a nearly 9% increase compared with $514.9 million in anticipated real estate tax revenue during the still-ongoing FY 2024.

Chesterfield’s business professional and occupational license, or BPOL, tax cutoff is proposed to remain unchanged at $500,000 in gross receipts. Businesses with gross receipts under that threshold, which the county has increased in recent years, are exempt from the tax.

The county feels it has found its “sweet spot” with BPOL at this time, but officials could review the BPOL rate again as part of the FY 2026 budget process, Deputy County Administrator Matt Harris said.

Chesterfield plans to increase its utility rates. Water would rise to $2.58 per 100 cubic feet from $2.43, and sewer would increase to $2.71 per 100 cubic feet from $2.56.

In a departure from recent annual budgets, the proposed spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year doesn’t feature major workforce compensation initiatives for county employees. Instead, it largely builds on efforts already underway.

Chesterfield plans to fully finance a 10% pay increase for public safety workers effective this past Jan. 1 and implement a 4% merit increase for county government employees, among other initiatives.

County police officers and firefighters would have a starting salary of $56,107 with Chesterfield’s proposed wage increases.

Teachers at county public schools are proposed to get a 4% raise. Under the proposal, teachers’ starting salaries would be $53,978. Nearly half of the overall proposed budget is allocated to the school division.

Chesterfield has budgeted for 85 new full-time positions in its proposal. The county government currently has about 4,100 full-time employees.

The $2 billion budget would be a $100 million increase compared with the FY 2024 budget.

The county’s general fund, which is the main operating fund, would be $998.4 million in the FY 2025 budget, or a $46.7 million increase compared with the current fiscal year.

The Board of Supervisors is slated to consider adopting the county’s budget in April. The 2025 fiscal year starts July 1.

chesterfield administration building scaled Cropped

Chesterfield County’s proposed $2 billion budget would cut the real estate tax rate by 1 cent and include financing for the planned Powhite Parkway extension. (BizSense file)

Chesterfield County officials have unveiled a $2 billion proposed budget for fiscal year 2025 that would allocate funding to the Powhite Parkway extension as well as knock a cent off the county’s real estate tax rate.

The pending budget features a bonds-driven package of $300 million in road projects, about half of which would be earmarked for the first phase of construction to extend Powhite to Woolridge Road from its current endpoint near its interchange with Route 288.

Chesterfield intends to issue bonds to finance the road project and would look to pay off the bonds over time with the county’s portion of tax revenue from the Central Virginia Transportation Authority, officials said at a media briefing on the budget Wednesday morning.

The CVTA was created in 2020 and finances transportation projects using sales and fuel tax proceeds, half of which is doled out annually to localities in the region. The county anticipates it will receive $30 million from the CVTA in fiscal year 2025.

“For FY 25, we’re adding a significant infusion of $300 million from our ability to utilize our 50 percent local share of CVTA revenues to support the largest infrastructure bonds ever issued in Chesterfield. The CVTA was designed to accomplish big things locally and regionally,” Chesterfield County Administrator Joe Casey said.

Ultimately, Chesterfield officials want to see the parkway extended to Hull Street Road.

Plans to finance the first phase of the Powhite Parkway extension were added to the county’s five-year capital improvements plan as part of the current budget. What’s on the table now is to actually put forward the money needed rather than wait for the funds as part of a long-range capital plan.

Other possible projects to be financed by the fiscal 2025 transportation initiative include improvements to the Route 150 and U.S. 60 interchange and extension projects on Center Pointe Parkway and Courthouse Road.

Upper Magnolia Regional Chesterfield 1

The yellow line shows the general anticipated path of the proposed extension of the Powhite Parkway.

A reduction to the county’s real estate tax rate is also proposed as part of the fiscal 2025 budget. The proposed budget would cut the real estate tax rate by 1 cent to 90 cents per $100 of assessed value.

Despite the decrease, real estate tax revenue is projected to rise as a result of higher assessments on properties, driven by rising prices in the housing market. The county anticipates it will generate $560.2 million in real estate tax revenue, a nearly 9% increase compared with $514.9 million in anticipated real estate tax revenue during the still-ongoing FY 2024.

Chesterfield’s business professional and occupational license, or BPOL, tax cutoff is proposed to remain unchanged at $500,000 in gross receipts. Businesses with gross receipts under that threshold, which the county has increased in recent years, are exempt from the tax.

The county feels it has found its “sweet spot” with BPOL at this time, but officials could review the BPOL rate again as part of the FY 2026 budget process, Deputy County Administrator Matt Harris said.

Chesterfield plans to increase its utility rates. Water would rise to $2.58 per 100 cubic feet from $2.43, and sewer would increase to $2.71 per 100 cubic feet from $2.56.

In a departure from recent annual budgets, the proposed spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year doesn’t feature major workforce compensation initiatives for county employees. Instead, it largely builds on efforts already underway.

Chesterfield plans to fully finance a 10% pay increase for public safety workers effective this past Jan. 1 and implement a 4% merit increase for county government employees, among other initiatives.

County police officers and firefighters would have a starting salary of $56,107 with Chesterfield’s proposed wage increases.

Teachers at county public schools are proposed to get a 4% raise. Under the proposal, teachers’ starting salaries would be $53,978. Nearly half of the overall proposed budget is allocated to the school division.

Chesterfield has budgeted for 85 new full-time positions in its proposal. The county government currently has about 4,100 full-time employees.

The $2 billion budget would be a $100 million increase compared with the FY 2024 budget.

The county’s general fund, which is the main operating fund, would be $998.4 million in the FY 2025 budget, or a $46.7 million increase compared with the current fiscal year.

The Board of Supervisors is slated to consider adopting the county’s budget in April. The 2025 fiscal year starts July 1.

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Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
1 month ago

The extension of the Powhite to Woolridge Rd is about one mile. The extension of Woolridge to 288 is about one mile. Together, they would bring a world of relief to the Hull Street Road corridor, where its intersection at 288 is rated as one of the most dire air pollution areas in the Commonwealth. It’s suburban traffic hell. Let’s get both those extensions completed. Woolridge Road is going to become a major new traffic corridor.

Carl Schwendeman
Carl Schwendeman
1 month ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

The Powhite Parkway is going to create tons of induced demand of car sprawl and will open up tons of open land to new sprawl. It will fill up with in 5 years unless it’s 10 to 12 lanes wide.

George MacGuffin
George MacGuffin
1 month ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

Bruce, do tell us: where is your >$800k home?
🤡nimby

Carl Schwendeman
Carl Schwendeman
1 month ago

I really think they should put everything with in two miles of this section of Hull Street and the Powhite Parkway in a special tax assessment district of 2 to 5 cents to fund the Powhite Parkway without eating the county out of house and home. In that the bulk of these the development in this area is only less then 5 years old and it’s mostly new sprawl coming in. The benefits of the Powhite Parkway will mostly go to new neighborhoods with $800,000 dollar plus homes less then 3 to 5 years old while old 30 to 70… Read more »

Michael Kane
Michael Kane
1 month ago

Absolutely; this will create MORE of an already traffic nightmare at peak times that does not show up on any app or navigation. The developers/builders of the past who made their money are long gone except some familiar names that are pushing for this as well as put it in their marketing materials and websites. Make these families pay for it not the residents of the commonwealth. Follow the money; they have plenty $. Lets take care of the older neighborhoods and build some sidewalks and environmental friendly lighting throughout the county streets- go across the river and look at… Read more »

William Bagby
William Bagby
1 month ago

I have a feeling that if RMTA (which operates the Powhite inside Richmond city limits) also operated the portion in Chesterfield County (which is controlled by VDOT), both the extension as well as improvements to the existing roadway would’ve been done already. But at least the county is showing they are serious in getting this extension started.

Carl Schwendeman
Carl Schwendeman
30 days ago
Reply to  William Bagby

I really don’t under stand why does the county have to fund this when they could have used the existing tolls to fund this along with putting in new tollbooths at the new exits.