Fluvanna Tries Program that Allows Donations on Taxes

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Fluvanna County is taking a run at a program that only two other counties in Virginia have. It allows people to voluntarily pay more on their tax bill.          

Not many counties have such a system so NBC29 decided to take a closer look at this one to see just how much success other places have had and how people in Fluvanna feel about it.  It's a plan that will allow Fluvanna taxpayers to fill funding requests the county can't.

"I'm hoping that a lot of people take advantage of it but it's hard to tell with the economic times at this point," said Robin Best, who lives in Fluvanna.

It will show up as a blank line on tax bills, allowing taxpayers to write in the amount they wish to give. Albemarle County has had it in place for about five years.

"I think there was interest on the part of people who really wanted to support beyond their tax dollars," said Lee Catlin, Albemarle County spokesperson.

A way to support programs without forcing a tax increase on everyone. Donations can go to county departments or, in most cases in Albemarle, schools. More than $100,000 has come in for education - money that could help Fluvanna.

"I think especially with the schools and with all the supplies we need and overcrowding issues and needing to replace Central I think it is a good idea," Best said.

Prince Edward County started putting a line on its tax bills for donations in October. Taxpayers have already contributed more than $1,000.

"The program doesn't stay at a high level of giving at all times; it kind of ebbs and flows," Catlin said.

While it's not always consistent, it does seem to make a difference.

"When the police department has needed a new K-9 unit or when there's a new trail that's being opened where the dollars that come into the program to support those initiatives have made a big difference in the success of the programs," Catlin said.

The donation line will start showing up on Fluvanna tax bills in December. 

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