Fairfax County has a deficit problem. It has lost hundreds of millions of dollars in resident income yearly — $3.1 billion over five years, more than all but five other counties in the U.S. The loss isn’t a result of the outsourcing of jobs, and the money isn’t owed to China. Instead, the county hemorrhaged wealthy residents to other jurisdictions.
More families left Fairfax for elsewhere than fled Detroit’s Wayne County. In recent years, 210,000 families making an average of $70,000 departed, taking with them $15 billion in tax revenue. They were replaced with 193,000 families making about $60,000 each.
An analysis by The Washington Times of migration data showed that the capital area’s population grew during the recession, not because of an influx of families moving from other American cities attracted to its relative economic stability, but in spite of a net loss of 26,000 families, many of them large, to outside the region between 2005 and 2008.