Sharing the Wealth

Every January for the past 35 years, Albemarle County has transferred a sum of money to the City of Charlottesville under a pact called the Revenue Sharing Agreement (RSA). “Sharing” is a euphemism, as the payments have only gone in one direction. The amounts are not trivial—this year’s payment was almost $16 million, and the total transfer to date tops $310 million. Though the arrangement began as a desperate bargain to stop the city from annexing more of the county’s land, many county residents now wonder if they are paying something for nothing.