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Metro May be Next Stop for Connolly

Steve Fehr

There is talk that if he wins re-election as expected Tuesday, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) may try to expand his regional influence by grabbing the Virginia seat on the Metro board of directors. The current Virginia member, Fairfax Supervisor T. Dana Kauffman (D-Lee), did not seek re-election to the Fairfax board this year and is retiring.

It shouldn't be too tough. Connolly sits on the board of the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission that appoints the Virginia rep and an alternate. A seat at the Metro table would give Connolly more control over the 106-mile system that represents Fairfax's biggest "non-county" investment ($64.9 million this year) and allow him to keep closer watch on the planned extension to Dulles International Airport. And, the higher regional profile won't hurt politically if he ultimately decides to run for Congress.

This may not sit well with the two current Virginia alternates, Fairfax Supervisor Catherine Hudgins (D-Hunter Mill) and Alexandria Mayor William D. Euille (D). But there is precedent for muscling them out of the way. In January 1998, then-Fairfax Board Chairman Katherine K. Hanley replaced Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland on the Metro panel, bypassing Kauffman, who was then serving as an alternate.

By Steve Fehr  |  October 31, 2007; 4:38 PM ET
Categories:  Bill Turque , Election 2007 , Fairfax County Chairman's Race 2007 , Gerald E. Connolly  
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Comments

Connolly is a blind, raise taxes at any cost liberal. Blaise is smarter and more affable. Listen to their debate on Mark Plotkin on WTOP radio at 10 a.m. on November l and you will agree.

Posted by: Blaise will win | November 1, 2007 4:08 AM | Report abuse

This posting from Bill Turque is based on nothing but speculation with no regard for the facts. Had Mr. Turque bothered to call Chairman Connolly about this "talk" of him "grabbing the Virginia seat on the Metro board of directors," he would have learned Chairman Connolly has neither the intention nor willingness to do so. Chairman Connolly believes Fairfax County is well represented by its current Metro board members, and he already has indicated his desire to move up Supervisor Cathy Hudgins (D-Hunter Mill) as Fairfax's principal voting member on the Metro board, succeeding Supervisor Dana Kauffman (D-Lee), who is retiring. A new alternate member to the Metro board will be appointed when the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors reorganizes in January.
-- Dominic Bonaiuto, chief of staff, Office of Chairman Connolly

Posted by: Dominic Bonaiuto | November 1, 2007 5:43 PM | Report abuse

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