The recently passed state transportation funding bill isn't perfect, but it was reached through compromise - that was the message conveyed Tuesday night by local members of the Virginia General Assembly to the South County Federation.
"The bill is pretty bullet proof," said Del. Dave Albo (D-42), a House representative on the transportation bill conference committee. "And if the money is not use for roads, the bill stipulates that all the revenue sources cease to exist… There's going to be some things in there you don't like, there are some things I don't like. It's not a perfect plan."
The transportation bill will generate $880 million in new revenue for state roadway projects, and Fairfax County will see $47.6 million annually and the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority will receive $111 million from increased taxes. The bill also guarantees $300 million for three years to help fund Phase II of the Silver Line project in Tysons.
"This was not an easy vote for people. Hopefully we are going to see better driving conditions around here," said Del. Mark Sickles (D-43). "I feel like this is a great accomplishment. If you've asked me if we would have passed a major transportation bill I would have told you it wasn't possible."
Sen. George Barker credited Albo for the bill's passage. "One of the absolute people that got this done this year was Dave Albo - to get a large transportation bill that wil make a long term difference," he said. "Neither side is going to get exactly what it wants, but let's do the best with what we can for Virginia."
The Details of House Bill 2313
- The 17.5-cents-per-gallon gasoline tax is replaced by a 3.5 percent tax.
- The wholesale tax on diesel fuel would be 6 percent.
- The state sales tax would increase 5 percent to 6 percent Raise the motor vehicle sales tax from 3 percent to 4.3 percent.
- There would be a $100 annual license tax for electric and alternative fuel vehicles.
- Allow a 0.7 percent sales tax increase in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia to fund transportation projects there.
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