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Va. lawmaker proposes higher gas tax to pay for road construction
WTOP.com ^ | November 16, 2012 | WTOP.com

Posted on 11/17/2012 3:49:02 AM PST by Timber Rattler

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has called for tolls to pay for the state's much-needed road construction, but another option is now on the table.

State Sen. John Watkins (R-Powhatan) proposed a plan that would increase Virginia's gas tax from 17.5 cents a gallon to 31.5 cents a gallon. The 14-cent increase would eliminate the need to add more toll roads.

In the proposed legislation, taxpayers in the three lowest state brackets would get a break on their income tax. Electric and hybrid vehicles would also have to undergo an annual assessment of $102 a year.

(Excerpt) Read more at wtop.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Government; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: gas; gastax; mcdonnell; tax; virginia
There's a more detailed article here, but essentially now that the election is over, Virginia's Republican legislators and Governor McDonnell are ramping up into full tax-hiking RINO mode.

And don't you just find it hilarious how the Northern Virginia liberal hybrid-owners are now getting the old "bait-and-switch" treatment with this proposed new "assessment" (theft)? Remember all the promises of big tax breaks, no gas taxes, and HOV privileges if they would just shell out the extra thousands of dollars to buy their hybrids. Now they're going to get shaken down like everybody else.

1 posted on 11/17/2012 3:49:16 AM PST by Timber Rattler
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To: Timber Rattler

I’ve read that something like 30% is skimmed off the top of highway funds before we even think about blowing money on wasteful transportation spending.

There’s plenty of money for highways, its just being blown on other crap.


2 posted on 11/17/2012 3:54:36 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: Timber Rattler
And Governor McDonnell is now in favor of new taxes as part of an agreement with Obama. The GOP is on the run and too many Summer soldiers are going to combine with Boehner to give Obama another victory and further cripple the US.
3 posted on 11/17/2012 4:01:40 AM PST by Truth29
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To: cripplecreek

I live right next door to Virginia —in Maryland, and our tax and spedn Governor M.O.M. just steals the taxes from the highway funds and uses them somewhere else (Probably Casa De Maryland and to pay for the Mexican College fund)then screams for more.

We pay more than enough to fix the roads if it were used for the roads.

Hope Va. makes out better.


4 posted on 11/17/2012 4:06:27 AM PST by Venturer
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To: Timber Rattler
The 14-cent increase would eliminate the need to add more toll roads.

By that reckoning - making everyone pay for the toll roads, vs. those that use them, is like saying that raising gas taxes can be used to supplement movie theaters so they don't have to raise the prices on refreshments - you get to pay for it even if you don't go to the theater. It's the "democratic" way.

5 posted on 11/17/2012 4:16:39 AM PST by trebb (Allies no longer trust us. Enemies no longer fear us.)
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To: Venturer

Look at the costs of public transportation that most Americans never use. I’ve read that 25% rider funding is considered good. Some do better but others like the Detroit people mover do far worse. (its rider funded at a rate of around 7%)

A few years back, Karl Levin was seeking $2 million from highway funds to save a section of Tiger stadium. His justification for wanting highway funds was that a bus stop would be incorporated into it.

Nancy Pelosi got millions in transportation funding for a parking app so people could find empty parking spaces with their phones.


6 posted on 11/17/2012 4:18:20 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: Timber Rattler
The 14-cent increase would eliminate the need to add more toll roads.

No it wouldn't. There is no need now either. There is plenty of money in state coffers to do what's needed. The problem is "what's needed". meh

7 posted on 11/17/2012 4:24:48 AM PST by Principled
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To: trebb
By that reckoning - making everyone pay for the toll roads, vs. those that use them, is like saying that raising gas taxes can be used to supplement movie theaters so they don't have to raise the prices on refreshments - you get to pay for it even if you don't go to the theater. It's the "democratic" way. >>>>>>By your reckoning every road should be a toll road. I don't want to pay for the road going to your house so you and your neighbors should be the only ones paying. Oh, and that is just the neighbors that live beyond your house, those that live before your house shouldn't have to pay for the few hundred yards to get to your house either.
8 posted on 11/17/2012 4:27:06 AM PST by conservaterian (NOW can we have a conservative candidate?????)
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To: trebb
By that reckoning - making everyone pay for the toll roads, vs. those that use them...
Deal! We will put toll booths on every road in northern va so you can pay for the roads you use, not just the Dulles toll... that make you feel better!
9 posted on 11/17/2012 4:28:33 AM PST by vet7279
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To: Timber Rattler

I already pay a toll each day on the Coleman Bridge which spans the York. I sure as hell don’t need yet another toll or tax.


10 posted on 11/17/2012 4:29:57 AM PST by ScottinVA (I've never been more disgusted with American voters.)
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To: conservaterian

Don’t you think the ones who use it should pay for it?

If you use it===> then you should pay for it
If you don’t use it ===> then you shouldn’t pay for it
If you pay for it ===> then you should be able to use it
If you don’t pay for it ===> then you shouldn’t be able to use it

What we have now is

If you use it===> then you should pay for it
If you don’t use it ===> then you should pay for it
If you pay for it ===> then you should pay more to be able to use it
If you don’t pay for it ===> then you should be able to use it


11 posted on 11/17/2012 4:33:56 AM PST by Principled
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To: Timber Rattler

Those of us in Southern and Western VA are simply hostages of the non-Southern elite that runs this state from NoVA and the overly reconstructed “Virginians” in the Richmond/Tidewater area. If you want to talk about secession, this is justified secession from them.


12 posted on 11/17/2012 4:57:02 AM PST by amishman
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To: Principled
Don’t you think the ones who use it should pay for it?
Ok, lets pull toll booths on every road in Virginia, drop the state tax on gas. I am in.
We need some common sense here. We all use most every road at one time or another and rather than carry around $50 in quarters, we pay for our roads thru taxes. When the FAA built Dulles, they told virginia what they were doing and that their prediction was there would be tremendous development in the Dulles corridor. The FAA offered to build extra lanes to let commuters use the road if Virginia would help pay for the road and Virginia said up yours, so we have the mess we have today.
13 posted on 11/17/2012 5:12:15 AM PST by vet7279
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To: cripplecreek

What gets me is that liberals like to point to highways and bridges and say see we need big government for highways and bridges. To which I respond terrific stick with highways and bridges. But they can’t even take care of highways and bridges.


14 posted on 11/17/2012 5:16:55 AM PST by all the best (`~!)
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To: Timber Rattler

14 cents a gallon is NOT going to kill anyone. If you burn a 1000 gallons a year (which is some serious driving) it’s still only $140 dollars per year. People, you’re not getting FREE roads - not possible.

If our AIRHEAD Governor in here in Texas would have been done this, we wouldn’t have toll roads pushing 20 cents PER MILE now. Our governor spends his time with a wad in pants bragging about how he didn’t increase the gasoline tax, while you have people in Dallas and Houston (and other cities) paying thousands of dollars more per year to drive.


15 posted on 11/17/2012 5:27:22 AM PST by BobL (You can live each day only once. You can waste a few, but don't waste too many.)
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To: Timber Rattler

I travel up I 81 pretty regular. As a matter of fact, I buy diesel fuel at a station at Exit 77, 100 miles from home because it is the least expensive fuel on my travels in either direction.

Gasoline is also less expensive.

Virginia could easily raise the fuel tax by from .07 to .10 per gallon and be in line with prices in adjacent Tennessee and still less than North Carolina.

Based on adjacent states, Virginia fuel is under taxed.


16 posted on 11/17/2012 5:28:19 AM PST by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Present failure and impending death yield irrational action))
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To: Venturer

For decades, $.02 out of every $.05 in Missouri fuel taxes were redirected to other “deserving” state agencies. Two years ago, citizens of Missouri put a stop to this in a ballot question.
Other states can do this.


17 posted on 11/17/2012 5:29:55 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (In the game of life, there are no betting limits)
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To: Timber Rattler
I work in a field where this very issue is the subject of a lot of debate and study. There are many conflicting issues here that make transportation funding so difficult to maintain over time. I can list a few of them here off the top of my head ...

1. Fuel taxes are less reliable over time because they have been declining due to improved fuel efficiency even as funding needs have increased. This is exacerbated when you have more and more vehicles that don't use traditional motor fuels.

2. Check your state's laws closely to see what types of expenditures can even be paid for out of the fuel tax revenue. In some states, any transportation funding from the fuel tax can only go into new projects, not ordinary repairs.

3. At 17.5 cents per gallon, it seems like Virginia has one of the lower fuel tax rates in the U.S. (for whatever that's worth).

4. While there's an understandable inclination to make every attempt to have users pay directly for the use of public assets (hence the appeal of toll facilities in recent decades), it is very difficult to figure out who the "user" is for transportation infrastructure when you consider how much commerce takes place on our highways that benefits the public at large and not just the users of a given road or bridge.

5. Here in the NYC area we have a series of interesting situations unfolding involving major bridge rehabilitation and replacement projects. Two of them in particular -- the Goethals Bridge and the Tappan Zee Bridge -- involve bridges that have passed the end of their useful lives and need to be replaced. In both cases the agency that owns the bridges has looked at public-private arrangements for having the bridge built by a private consortium that would then collect tolls for a period of several decades to finance the cost. In both cases, the financial analysis shows that the tolls that would be required to pay the cost of the bridge would be so high that revenues would suffer simply because fewer motorists would use the bridge with such a high toll in place. The implications of this are really fascinating.

Anyway ... flame away if you feel like it, folks!

18 posted on 11/17/2012 5:41:36 AM PST by Alberta's Child ("I am the master of my fate ... I am the captain of my soul.")
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To: BobL

Megabump to post #15


19 posted on 11/17/2012 5:48:07 AM PST by KantianBurke (Where was the Tea Party when Dubya was spending like a drunken sailor?)
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To: Alberta's Child

I agree with your statements and will add my own thought.

I have no issue paying for things that I use and paying the actual cost. If it REALLY costs $212 to register my truck every year then so be it. But in most cases Political hacks see fit to skim that money. So 212 bucks become $250 with the extra going into the general fund or earmarked for some pet project.

If tax funds on a national level were segregated into specific funds and kept that way we would be way ahead.


20 posted on 11/17/2012 7:08:04 AM PST by msrngtp2002 (Just my opinion.)
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To: Truth29
"And Governor McDonnell is now in favor of new taxes as part of an agreement with Obama."

That's right. In McDonnell's words, elections have consequences and the people have spoken, so we need to look at raising taxes.

I voted for this invertebrate; it's a good thing VA governors are limited to one term, because he wouldn't get another vote from me.

21 posted on 11/17/2012 7:18:34 AM PST by CatherineofAragon (The idiocracy has come home to roost. God help us.)
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To: vet7279
The argument is to have gas taxes pay for things needed by gas users. That is, not have gas taxes used to pay for things unrelated to gas usage [eg medical benifits.]

Separately,

We all use most every road at one time or another and rather than carry around $50 in quarters, we pay for our roads thru taxes.

Since we all use most every road at one time then it fits well that we all pay for most every road. Tolls should be applicable in the situations in which generally speaking the road is used by a much smaller group of users regularly [like Ga 400 north of Atl.]

I don't understand your last sentence.

22 posted on 11/17/2012 7:23:31 AM PST by Principled
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To: Principled
I don't understand your last sentence.
In the 1960's the FAA decided to build Dulles airport and the politicians wanted non-stop access to their shinny new airport and thus, there were no entrance/exit points built on the roughly 20 mile, 4 lane divided highway. You got on at the beltway, and you did not get off until you got to the airport. Within a few years of the development of the airport, thousands of houses sprang up in the Dulles corridor and the only way for commuters to get to work was via back roads. After a few years of yelling, VA decided to build us a road to get to work faster so we would not use the back roads but they sold bonds to build the Dulles Access Toll road and used tolls to pay for the bonds so tax payers would not have to pay for "our" road. The Dulles Toll road has been paid for 10 fold, but we still pay tolls so the state can pay for all the other crap they do. Now these ----- want to raise the toll on the toll road again so they don't have to pay higher gas taxes so those of us that live in the Dulles area get the opportunity to pay for their roads too. And to some this makes perfect sense. They are also the ones that voted for BO.
23 posted on 11/17/2012 8:09:07 AM PST by vet7279
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To: ScottinVA

Stand by, Scott...
They’re talking tolls on I-64, too...
Our gov has already made the deal with a private company to put tolls on all the tunnels going into and out of Norfolk with increases built in each year.
The new, widened 460 through the southern part of SoEast Hamp Rds will be a toll route too...
Around here it’ll be “pay AND show your papers” soon.


24 posted on 11/17/2012 8:30:09 AM PST by matginzac
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To: Timber Rattler

“State Sen. John Watkins (R-Powhatan) proposed a plan that would increase Virginia’s gas tax from 17.5 cents a gallon to 31.5 cents a gallon. The 14-cent increase would eliminate the need to add more toll roads.”

With “Republicans” like this, who needs democrats?


25 posted on 11/17/2012 9:34:33 AM PST by Road Glide
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To: matginzac

Ugh... we`ve been paying tolls over the Coleman since the rebuild in 1996.. I guess VDOT figures we`re doing such a good job replenishing their Christmas party fund, they`ll just keep the good deal going.


26 posted on 11/17/2012 9:49:05 AM PST by ScottinVA (I've never been more disgusted with American voters.)
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To: ScottinVA

I remember a toll road between Richmond and Petersburg back in the 60s. Is it still there? I think it was I-85.


27 posted on 11/17/2012 10:26:07 AM PST by ncpatriot
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To: amishman
There was a really good article in a local SWVA newspaper this week that discussed how the election revealed the growing cultural and economic chasm between SW and Central VA and Northern and Eastern Virginia. It's very much a split that may never be repaired.


28 posted on 11/17/2012 4:41:14 PM PST by Timber Rattler (Just say NO! to RINOS and the GOP-E)
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To: bert
Based on adjacent states, Virginia fuel is under taxed.

Or, looked at another way, perhaps fuel in adjacent states is overtaxed. 

29 posted on 11/17/2012 7:36:30 PM PST by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: Timber Rattler; Mad Dawg; EDINVA; JPG; Hawthorn; Paisan; ConservativeOrBust; VA_Gentleman; ...

Virginia Ping! If you want on or off the Virginia Ping List, please freepmail me.

30 posted on 11/19/2012 10:19:56 AM PST by HokieMom (Pacepa : Can the U.S. afford a president who can't recognize anti-Americanism?)
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To: Timber Rattler

Where is the flying car I was supposed to have by now?


31 posted on 11/19/2012 5:26:02 PM PST by outofsalt ("If History teaches us anything it's that history rarely teaches us anything")
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