Loudoun board opposes toll road legislation
The Loudoun board of supervisors voted Wednesday to oppose a bill proposed by state Del. James M. LeMunyon (R) that would require the advance approval of Fairfax and Loudoun county government before instituting toll increases on the Dulles Toll Road and the Dulles Greenway.
In a 7-1-1 vote, the board refused to support House Bill 1359, citing concerns that the measure would jeopardize the financing for the Dulles Metrorail extension. Supervisor Eugene Delgaudio (R-Sterling) cast the lone vote in support of the bill, which was referred to the state Committee on Transportation on Dec. 30 .
LeMunyon proposed the bill to prevent the Dulles Metrorail project from relying too heavily on revenues generated by toll road users, who he believes are bearing too much of the financial burden.
Supervisor Lori Waters (R- Broad Run), who abstained from the vote, said she had concerns about the legislation but understood LeMunyon's point of view.
"I think some of the consequences of the legislation are very harmful to the Metro project," Waters said, "But the public doesn't have a proper avenue to express their opinions on these toll increases that are just unbelievable... there has to be greater accountability. I think the people deserve a greater voice."
Supervisor Stevens Miller (D-Dulles) was less understanding in his assessment: "This is one of the worst, ill-thought-out pieces of legislation ever," he said.
The board, which supports incremental tolling along the Greenway, also urged the General Assembly to pursue additional state and federal funding that would alleviate the pressure on toll revenue.
"If [LeMunyon] really wants to do some good, work on enforcing incremental tolling on the toll road," said Chairman Scott K. York (I-At Large.) "If they want to do some good, help pay for state responsibilities and help out in providing some more funding to the rail out to Dulles, which will help in economic development, and if the state would put more money into it, it softens the burden on raising the toll rates."
| January 20, 2011; 5:02 PM ET
Categories: Caitlin Gibson, Loudoun County
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