Transportation Bill Moves to Governor's Desk

By: Lindsey Ward
By: Lindsey Ward

February 24, 2007

“This is a significant break through,” said Bill Janis, R-56th District.

In the final hours of 2007 General Assembly spring session, lawmakers reached a decision on transportation.

"It’s a huge compromise plan and it's got additional money for Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads that they raise for themselves and they spend for themselves,” said Delegate Rob Bell, R-58th District. “It’s got statewide money through bonds, it’s got land use, and it’s got V-DOT reform."

An overwhelming vote in the House, 64-34, and narrowly making through the Senate, 21-18, one of the biggest issues facing Virginia is moving forward.

The plan passed, would allow localities, such as Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads, to tax citizens in order to pay for transportation needs.

Some argue by making localities pay for improvements, Virginia is turning its back on the areas that generate the most money for the state, while other say they asked to for the tax and it wouldn't be fair to for everyone to pay for problems only a few areas face.

“It doesn't seem to make much sense to me that we would raise taxes significantly on Goochland and Louisa residents in order to address a problem that is primarily an acute crisis in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads,” said Bill Janis, R-56th District.

Friday, a committee of House and Senate representatives announced they reached a compromise they felt both sides would agree with.

“The plan has been called a comprise, but it’s not really a compromise its mostly a bunch of House guys with a few Senate Republicans getting together and putting together a plan that doesn't involve the rest of us,” said Creigh Deeds, D-25th District.

The Governor will get his chance to look at the bill on Monday and decide whether or not to sign.

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