The Washington Post reported that County Executive Anthony Griffin approached the Board of Supervisors with the idea of turning Fairfax County into a city. While it may sound like a good idea or a bad idea for some, it provides an interesting issue to look at under a microscope.
Many would say that turning Fairfax County into a city, thus dissolving the towns of Clifton, Vienna, and Herndon, would set a different base, where the “city” would be able to have more taxing power and greater control over the transportation issue. If Fairfax County becomes a city, it would become the 11th largest city.
On the other hand, there are some issues to consider if Fairfax County became a city. Crime would increase, the taxes would continue to increase, not to mention, the loss of jobs that would result in this conversion. Currently, the towns of Clifton, Vienna, and Herndon have their own employees, who would lose their jobs, thus contributing to higher unemployment. Also, the so-called city would threaten the country charm that exists, especially out in Western Fairfax. For some who call Clifton home, it is always refreshing to come out to experience the tranquility from the city and to experience the small town feel. There is another side effect to city living, and this will result in the declining quality of public education. You can see this from other metropolitan cities, like Baltimore, Detroit, and even in our own backyard, Washington, DC.
So, is it a bad idea or a good idea for Fairfax County to become a city? I say No for the obvious reasons above. I enjoy the tranquility of coming home each evening and being able to go running in my neighborhood without feeling threatened or being able to drive five miles down the road to be surrounded by a rolling countryside. Perhaps, Fairfax County officials should remember the old adage, “If it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it.”