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May 30, 2019

Paul Petrauskas seeking Marshall supervisor seat

Paul J. Petrauskas
I’m concerned that taxes are going up and maybe the budget’s not being managed as conservatively or as prudently as it should be.
— Paul Petrauskas
Paul John Petrauskas
• Age: 54

• Home: Upperville

• Office sought: Marshall District board of supervisor’s seat.

• Party: Independent.

 Work: Independent “semi-retired” stock analyst, with about 20 years of finance and investment experience with various companies, including The Vanguard Group.

• Education: Master’s degree, finance, Kings (Pa.) College, 1997; bachelor’s degree, finance, Kings College, 1987; West Side Tech High School, Pa., 1982.

• Family: Wife, Karen; daughter Summer, 13, and son William, 12.

• Hobbies: Bike riding, playing poker and working around the house.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
The Upperville man admitted that he could continue to carp from the comfort of his couch about the quality of county government decision-making and leave it at that.

Or, he could step up and seek the Marshall District seat on Fauquier’s board of supervisors.

Taking the latter course, political independent Paul J. Petrauskas, 54, on Tuesday filed required candidate documents with the county registrar’s office.

“I’m just running as citizen who wants to be heard louder than just complaining at home,” said Mr. Petrauskas, an independent stock analyst with about 20 years of finance and investment experience.

Mr. Petrauskas, who never has sought elective office, hopes to unseat first-term independent Mary Leigh McDaniel, who lives near Marshall. If he gets on the ballot, Mr. Pestrauskas would face Ms. McDaniel in the Nov. 5 general election.

“I read the (local) news and I see some of the things going on in the county, and it just makes me stop to think that there’s a better way to do it,” Mr. Petrauskas said of his reasons for running. “I’m concerned about budget costs, the cost of taxes.”

He first considered running for the Marshall District board seat after real estate tax bills for fiscal 2018 increased 11.1 percent on the “average” Fauquier County property. That year, inflation rose about 2 percent, Mr. Petrauskas said.

“Why things are going up 11 percent blows my mind,” he added.

Mr. Petrauskas also expressed misgivings about the $13-million-plus Central Sports Complex under construction just east of Warrenton.

Initially, “it’s not going to have any (permanent” bathrooms,” he said. “You’re going to have 500 people there on a hot day. You’re going to need 100 (portable toilets) lined up in a row to get to the bathroom.”

At the same time, the county board of supervisors “can’t afford to pay teachers,” Mr. Petrauskas said. “I think the budget priorities need to be aligned where you pay teachers, you pay your emergency service personnel” and fund other essential public services.

After that, “if you have any (money) left, then maybe you think about a sports complex.”

He also has doubts about the planned $6.3-million Marshall Main Street makeover project.

“They want to do a beautification of Main Street Marshall,” Mr. Petrauskas said. “But Marshall still has a water-quality issue.”

If elected, his focus would include county government spending, he said.

“The government’s biggest priority is probably the budget,” said Mr. Petrauskas, who grew up in Pennsylvania and moved to Fauquier in 2004. “And, I’m concerned that taxes are going up and maybe the budget’s not being managed as conservatively or as prudently as it should be.”

No particular vote or position taken by Ms. McDaniel prompted him to seek the Marshall District seat, Mr. Petrauskas said.

But, “she’s part of the budget process,” he said. “And she signs off on these budgets — whether she likes it or not. And, she very rarely disagrees with everything that goes on.”

In an interview Wednesday, Ms. McDaniel said: “I’m very proud to run on my record. But, I think it’s great the constituents will have an option.”

To get on the ballot, board of supervisors’ candidates must collect the signatures of 125 residents registered to vote in their respective magisterial districts.

As of Sunday, Mr. Petrauskas and his wife Karen had gathered 71 signatures. The first-time candidate remains confident he will collect the necessary signatures.

“If I get in the ballot, I like my chances” of defeating Ms. McDaniel, he said. “I think that bringing a message of more common sense to the budget — and comparing Mary Leigh’s decisions to the decisions I would make — I think people might see a clearer path to goring forward.”

Like all independent candidates, Mr. Petrauskas has until 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 11 — when Democratic and Republican primary elections will conclude — to submit all required documents to appear on the Nov. 5 general election ballot.

In the 2015 general election, Ms. McDaniel won the Marshall District seat with 60 percent of the vote, and independent Mike Ashby got 39 percent.

Contact Don Del Rosso at or 540-270-0300. 
Member comments
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JoelMcMullen · July 8, 2019 at 8:12 am
Cool info, thanks
StevenLane · June 24, 2019 at 9:41 am
I really like this man's hobby. Paul Petrauskas had been hoping for a long time to launch his own casino project, but he could not implement it, so he did a lot of reviews on the site Thank you for the article.
Jim Griffin · June 6, 2019 at 1:08 pm
School buildings age, too, drives the reasoning behind arguments for refurbish, replace, consolidate.

Two percent drop (2011-2017) in school age population (plus a rise in home schooling and private schools), 20 percent surge in people 55+ years of age.

Yes, the schools expect a manageable bump in enrollment, after which it is back to long-term decline. The need at hand is attracting teachers to meet and exceed state standards for instruction.

I support the current Board of Supervisors and school board members. I applaud the contributions of public servants. We in this county are well-served by their work on our behalf.
Truepat · June 6, 2019 at 12:26 pm
Great news Jim Griffin, we need to get you on the school board since they keep insisting that the student growth requires them to either build a new school in Warrenton or expand Warrenton Middle school. Better yet, perhaps a position on the Board of Supervisors!!
Jim Griffin · June 6, 2019 at 9:20 am
No surprise, Fauquier County's population is ageing.

Primary sources are what I rely upon:

UVA's Weldon-Cooper tracks Virginia population by age. Fauquier County experienced population declines in the ages eligible for public education, which constitute three age bands: 5-9 years, 10-14 yrs, 15-19 yrs.

2011, 14,093
2012, 13,994
2013, 13,996
2014, 14,081
2015, 13,934
2016, 13,818
2017, 13,815

In addition to many parents choosing private schools, home-school enrollment is up 37%:

Meanwhile, the Fauquier population of people 55+ tracks as follows:

2011, 17,713
2012, 18,431
2013, 18,995
2014, 19,732
2015, 20,373
2016, 21,027
2017, 21,398
nonewtaxes · June 6, 2019 at 8:47 am
Yes jim the facts are plain to see but you are blind. However, I want to thank you. You are a source of 2nd hand fake news. Its not bad enough that news from the reporters is sometimes tainted but your and other leftist add yet another bend to the truth in an effort to deflect.

Either that or simple math escapes you
Jim Griffin · June 6, 2019 at 7:16 am
"True"pat: You're entitled to an opinion, but not to your own version of the facts, which are public and plain to see.

Deluged? Overcrowded? Really?

Truepat · June 6, 2019 at 6:45 am
nonewtaxes we know the truth.......
Jim Griffin · June 5, 2019 at 9:54 pm
You assume the number of children per residence, you assume they go to the same public school, you assume other variables, over and over you assume.

Our schools prepared for manageable growth before the next dip takes the count lower than now. The issue is attracting teachers.
nonewtaxes · June 5, 2019 at 9:38 pm
My numbers come right from the budget. You jst cannot accept the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Jim Griffin · June 5, 2019 at 5:39 pm
Not my numbers, not trying to change them. County predicted growth, anticipates it, after which the numbers decline.

You made your numbers up; Your assumptions.

No proposal from you. You prefer ad hominem attack.
nonewtaxes · June 5, 2019 at 5:32 pm
Deflect, deflect, deflect. You cant change the numbers just because you dont like them.
Jim Griffin · June 5, 2019 at 5:11 pm
Your suppositions, ifs and buts say otherwise. Oh, and for the record, I have neither desire nor say in cramming kids anywhere. I quoted those we employ to manage enrollment and capacity.

When you carry a hammer, everything looks like a nail; For a pseudonym like "nonewtaxes" there's a TAX INCREASE on every horizon. We take pride in our county, so we invest in it, just as we do in our schools and our first responders.

What's your "conservative" proposal to the contrary? Deny the owners the right to build on their property?
nonewtaxes · June 5, 2019 at 3:54 pm
The math would say otherwise. With a combined capacity of 888 kids and an expected population of 1227 kids you'd have to be a duma$$ to think there is adequate capacity. That 1227/888 is 38% over capacity. You may want to cram all the kids in there but the Fire Marshall and the parents might say otherwise.

Can you see TAX INCREASE on the horizon? You dont have to look too far.
Jim Griffin · June 5, 2019 at 12:25 pm
System capacity sufficient. Lines can be redrawn, especially where temporary growth anticipated.

On balance, 19 additional students last year. Deluge? Overcrowding? Of course not.

Real issue: Enough qualified/excellent teachers.
nonewtaxes · June 5, 2019 at 11:50 am
I seen something else plainly. From the SY18/19 Budget page 1 listed be the schools capacities and currently utilization rates. Max capacity for Thompson and Coleman combined is 888. Current use is 627. If there are 300 houses each with two kids that'll be 600 kids. 600 new kids added to the current 627 kids is about 1227 kids give or take. Max capacity is 888.

In the lastest adopted CIP there is NO $$$ for the northern ESs. OOPS!
Jim Griffin · June 5, 2019 at 10:43 am
As you can plainly see in the information posted from the school system, they anticipate 733 more students (a 6.6% increase) before the numbers dip again by 2026 to 5.8 percent less than the current year.

All within capacity. Last year the schools saw 19 students more than the prior year.
nonewtaxes · June 4, 2019 at 10:06 pm
300 new houses in marshall sub
600 new students
Claude Thompson has oom for 600 more kids? LOL!
Jim Griffin · June 3, 2019 at 4:37 pm
Fauquier will have both. Indeed, both are being built now to replace and supplant copper. That's a fact. Two companies have already offered us fiber, significant because previously we could only buy 1.544 mbps T1 circuits for +$300 mos. The typical 50mbps connection is over 3,000 percent better.

The county needs a fiber backbone across its locations. It will have one. Entrepreneurs are pulling fiber now. The county will own some, add some, connecting its interests across the county and beyond. This county needs the intermesh of fiber connections that evolve from public/private partnerships not dissimilar from similar utility relationships for electricity and telephones.

The 5G network will be imposed federally on behalf of those who purvey the Internet of Things, like trucks, vending machines, self-driving cars, handheld devices, military, first responders, medical sensors and new pharma caps that track use, etc., etc.

Rural homes will get use of it, too, but 5G is fundamentally focused on mobile. It's not for 4K/8K televisions, but the way Verizon tells it you may need anything else:

In-home/In-business installations will cross over into wireless, but fundamentally they will want/need fixed internet over fiber, at least across the community backbone.

Lightning is not friendly to copper networks, for example, and wireless performance degrades with increased load. We're definitely getting both fiber and wireless across this county, and we'll need them. Community services will require the county own its own secure fiber backbone; How that evolves to serve homes is a market conundrum ahead.

Funny how fast the market moves when the government puts it boots on.
nonewtaxes · June 3, 2019 at 3:47 pm
The county isnt deploying 5g. Are you saying the county should stop the broadband plan or replace it after 5g?
Jim Griffin · June 3, 2019 at 10:34 am
NNT: Society needs a safety net for the homeless; Failing to do this leads to more and worse problems. Leave seniors without housing? Military and veterans and so on? None proposes excluding the market, none proposes the Army build it.

Yes, naturally, we need fiber broadband capacity for our county government, connecting schools, county/municipal buildings, traffic lights, cameras and more. Sheriff Mosier spoke in favor of this just as I did at the Board of Supervisors meeting.

Feds are bringing this in the form of 5G we cannot refuse. Trump's FCC order wipes clean objections to its deployment.

No, I do not propose government workers grab shovels to build capacity. It will be work performed by the market at market rates. The market is already building fiber capacity in this county because the market justifies doing so -- lunch at Old Salem proves this, where fiber investors and providers gather over good food. Shentel now has fiber traversing Rt. 17, as do other private investors, in addition to Verizon, Comcast and more.

Should the county simply rent broadband forever? Would we better off without county police, fire, water, sewage, roads? It's always an interesting question as to how best to finance and operate, but there is no doubt in anyone's mind that it is essential for the community, nor that the market will be involved/committed to its deployment, maintenance, operation.

Many communities nationwide are approaching these questions with partnerships. None does so without the market's involvement, which I favor.
Truepat · June 3, 2019 at 10:18 am
:) LOL
Jim Griffin · June 3, 2019 at 9:39 am

"Deluge of students"? School overcrowding? Seriously? Where do you get this stuff?

Fact: "Years of decline."

"Fauquier County Public Schools enrollment remains relatively flat, but increased slightly so far this year."

"On Friday, Sept. 7, the sixteenth day of classes, the school system had 19 more students than a year ago."

"As of last week, Fauquier Public Schools had 11,106 students."

"Fauquier school budget director Prashant Shrestha last fall projected enrollment would increase 6.6 percent over the next decade after years of decline."

"Overall, high schools stand at 86.5 percent capacity; middle schools at 79.6 percent, and elementary schools at 77.9 percent."

See this PDF, entitled "Fauquier County Public Schools, Ten-Year Enrollment Projections, dated October 2016 and projected to the year 2026-2027":

(Very long URL, shortened with Bitly.)


"Elementary school capacity is not expected to exceed total program capacity during the ten-year period. ... None of the middle schools are projected to exceed their program capacity during the 10-year period. Lastly, the high schools currently reflect sufficient capacity at all three schools for the projection period."

"At the end of the 10-year projection period, it is anticipated that Fauquier County Public Schools will decrease in its enrollment. School year 2026-2027 is projected to have an enrollment of 10,371 or 5.8% less than the current year."

These are school enrollment facts. You asked my opinion on the cause of deficits: Spending exceeds income. We buy conservation rights. We build and buy buildings. We upgrade the airport. We add police to every school. Etc.

Facts are clear, speak for themselves -- no "deluge", no overcrowding. Years of decline, now modest growth expected, followed by more decline. Below capacity. Source: Fauquier County Public Schools.
nonewtaxes · June 3, 2019 at 9:16 am
JG You support both subsidized low income housing and subsidized broadband. Neither of those are market actions.

If there was a profitable market for low income housing someone would build it. If there was a profitable to establish a fiber braodband system someone would build it.
Truepat · June 3, 2019 at 9:05 am
The easiest ways to see how uncontrolled housing developments affect the community is the overcrowding of our schools within years of being built. I'm not a medical expert but I can safely guess the deluge of students is from moving in not births. But I'm basing my comments on the facts that my RE taxes have made my mortgage payments, without any changes on rates or my part, from $900 a month to $1400 with the new rate not scheduled in as of yet. So the increase of $500 a month came from the Supervisors needing more money to cover the debt the county faces. They weren't caused by new businesses coming in, which of course would offset the need to charge the homeowners or "county investors" as I prefer to call ourselves more money each year. If I'm wrong, what is your opinion on the cause for the constant deficits?
Jim Griffin · June 3, 2019 at 8:10 am
Truepat: Thank you for your reply, but it doesn't scrape the surface of the issue or your claim. Your assertion: it has "been proven over and over, housing developments expenses far out weigh the taxability of those properties" and yet your answer does not begin to prove this point.

People generate revenues. They work, draw taxable income, save and invest. They pay sales taxes, real and personal property taxes. They start businesses, patronize existing business, staff those businesses. Money and labor capital invested multiply. Supply of workers, customers, capital is typically the draw for a business to locate anywhere.

We could go on with this, but you offer none of the balance in your reply, only the cost, and bare assumptions, at that -- the cost of everything, the value of nothing. Where is this deficit proven over and over?

Finally, principles. The Republican Party says these issues are better addressed by free market than by government. The alternative is socialism, the hand of govt deciding instead of market forces -- is this your preference?

Me? I'm neither Dem nor Rep, but I'm sticking with basic American principles of the market and property rights. I'd hate to see lack of growth, employment, business, services measured as "success" by our fellow citizens.
Truepat · June 3, 2019 at 6:22 am
Thanks Brandonj for your remarks, as for Jim's question, an average that is used to determine density and related issues is 2 children and 2 cars per home. Schools and roads are a given to be impacted but the underlying costs to the taxpayers which is heavily affected is: additional police and vehicles, additional firemen and vehicles, additional rescue and vehicles, the new residents will expect the same protections as everyone else. Can the existing personnel in these fields take on an added 100 homes, 1000 homes? That is the basis of my statements and it should be a concern for all.
Jim Griffin · May 31, 2019 at 4:52 pm

I thank you for this fine response. Letting the market work is the best approach, that government is a blunt tool that needs focus on needs and not wants.

Citizens are not the the problem, they are the solution. They generate revenue in many ways that include earning, spending, savings and more. Their aggregation brings votes and political power.

The Republican Party of Virginia's creed has free market principles as Job One:

Why not practice what they preach?
brandonj · May 31, 2019 at 1:32 pm

Per point 1, it doesn't take a research study to see that rural areas have revenue problems. Maybe 100 years ago this wasn't a problem, but now that there's a massive social safety net, a lot of these areas are what we would consider dirt poor.

I also think that governments do a terrible job at planning and don't anticipate the costs with suburban development, e.g. schools, new roads, traffic delays, etc. Short term gains are favored over long term planning.

2. Republicans aren't always on the side of property rights.
nonewtaxes · May 31, 2019 at 10:33 am
The sports field complex area has no access to public water or sewer.

500 people
10 hours
a whole lot of stink stank stunk
no running water to wash hands
not best place to change diapers
not really family friendly - ever take a toddler to a porta potty?
ever take an adult to a porta potty?

BikerFriendlyGal · May 31, 2019 at 8:22 am
Portable Bathrooms by the Numbers:
500 People
10 Hour Event
8 Portable Bathrooms
Parks and Rec knows what they're doing until permanent restrooms can be installed.
Jim Griffin · May 30, 2019 at 1:05 pm

Two questions for you --

1. Where has it been "been proven over and over, housing developments expenses far out weigh the taxability of those properties"? I did read the cost of services study written at UVA in 2015, but found it an outcome-driven report based on Rockefeller assumptions, which for example did not include the cost of diminished taxation. I've seen nothing else that confirms the hypothesis that citizens represent cost greater than value. Indeed, without homes we have less taxpayers, less workers, less customers and so on, all needed to attract business.

2. Do you believe government should tell people what they can do with their property? If so, doesn't this violate the first principle of the Republican creed? If as conservative values dictate a free market should decide, why blame the supervisors? Isn't "social" intervention just what it sounds like?
Truepat · May 30, 2019 at 9:13 am
The real estate taxes are going to push long time "homeowners" out if the spending is not brought under control. It's been proven over and over, housing developments expenses far out weigh the taxability of those properties. Our supervisors refuse to listen to their constituents and it's time for a change.....
cochraneforsheriff2019 · May 30, 2019 at 7:56 am
Good luck and thanks for running!
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