Sunday, March 17, 2013
Does the commonwealth need another name on the ballot?
Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling took himself out of Virginia's race for governor last week, leaving, at least for now, what's shaping up to be a two-person race. The choice for the Old Dominion's next governor, seven months before Election Day, seems to have boiled down to presumptive Republican nominee Ken Cuccinelli, the state's socially conservative attorney general, against likely Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe, the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee and a McLean businessman. The Republican Party of Virginia will hold its convention on May 17 and 18 in Richmond to formally select its nominee. Democrats go to the polls on June 11 to cast their ballots in several races, including governor and lieutenant governor. …
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
A $100 fee part for hybrid owners is part of Gov. Bob McDonnell's transportation plan, but several legislators would like to see that repealed.
McLean has a large number of hybrid vehicles—and probably a large number of hybrid owners who may not be pleased with Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposed $100 hybrid tax,. Del. Ken Plum, who represents Reston and Herndon, is one of them. Plum, who owns two Priuses, says he is writing to the governor to try and get him to back away from the hybrid tax. The hybrid tax was part of the large transportation plan that passed in the Virginia General Assembly last week. The reasoning: Since hybrid cars don't pay as much in gas tax, they need to pay up somewhere. Meanwhile, Alexandria-area delegates Scott Surovell and Sen. Adam Ebbin have launched an online petition urging McDonnell to repeal the hybrid fee. “The idea that we would tax people …
Friday, February 22, 2013
Bill aiming to build consensus around Gov. Bob McDonnell's plan to bring $3 billion to transportation projects met with mixed reviews.
Friday, February 22
By Whitney Spicer, Capital News Service Critics of the transportation funding compromise reached by legislative negotiators say the plan would place a huge burden on Virginia taxpayers. The Virginia House of Delegates on Friday passed House Bill 2313, which would raise about $900 million a year for transportation and transit projects. The 98-page compromise must win approval the Senate before it can be signed into law by the governor. The legislative session ends Saturday. The new plan, which was hammered out by a 10-member conference committee over the past week, would potentially raise close to $900 million a year in transportation revenue. It could be the first transportation funding overhaul in Virginia since 1986 if it passes this …
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
House committee added amendments Wednesday to the package, which would eliminate Virginia's gas tax and hike sales taxes to raise $3 billion over five years.
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell’s controversial transportation bill passed the House of Delegates Finance Committee on Wednesday, moving past its first hurdle in the state's 2013 General Assembly session. In a 14-8 vote, the committee passed McDonnell’s package, which calls for eliminating the state’s 17.5 cents per gallon gas tax and raising the state sales tax from 5 percent to 5.8 percent. The plan would also keep the 17.5 tax on diesel fuel and increase vehicle registration fees. It would also raise the amount of the state’s sales tax that goes to transportation from 5 to 75 cents over a five-year period. McDonnell said the bill would raise approximately $3 billion in that time, including $1.8 billion for new construction. The committee — …
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell tours state Thursday asking for support, says plan could jumpstart several projects in Northern Virginia.
Gov. Bob McDonnell spent Thursday traveling across the state to urge area business leaders and residents to support his “Virginia’s Road to the Future” transportation plan, saying his proposal could help jumpstart a number of projects in Northern Virginia that have seemed to stall. The plan has gotten mixed reviews from some state legislators so far this session, but a new poll from Christopher Newport University showed 63 percent of Virginia voters support McDonnell's plan, which hinges on doing away with the state’s 17.5 cents per gallon gas tax and increasing the state sales tax from 5 percent to 5.8 percent. The poll, released Thursday, surveyed 1,015 people across the state on a number of issues, including the governor's plan. …
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Governor lays out proposals, challenges in speech to state lawmakers.
Transportation funding, teacher raises and restoring rights to non-violent offenders were a few of the topics explored Wednesday night by Gov. Bob McDonnell in his State of the Commonwealth speech at the Capitol in Richmond. "The Virginia General Assembly has met in this building for 220 years — the Speaker was just a young boy during that first session," the governor said, grinning at Speaker Bill Howell (R-28th) seated behind him. "I ask that you not conclude this session without approving a long-term transportation funding plan for Virginia," said McDonnell to members of the General Assembly in the House Chamber. "Do not send me a budget that does not include new transportation funding. We are all out of excuses. We must act now." "We …
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Virginia governor's proposed $3.1 billion transportation overhaul gives higher percentage of sales tax to projects, leaves tax on diesel in tact.
Wednesday, January 9
By Mark Robinson, Capital News Service RICHMOND – With the General Assembly set to convene, Gov. Bob McDonnell proposed Tuesday increasing Virginia’s sales tax and abolishing its nearly 27-year-old gas tax, making Virginia the first state in the country to do so. The measures are a part of the governor’s proposed $3.1 billion plan to fund improvements to Virginia’s transportation system over the next five years. The funds would supplement $14 billion of transportation projects already under way in the commonwealth, the most in Virginia’s history. “Declining funds for infrastructure maintenance, stagnant motor fuels tax revenues, increased demand for transit and passenger rail and the growing cost of major infrastructure projects …
Monday, December 17, 2012
In wake of Newtown shooting, Gov. Bob McDonnell wants to look at all resources to keep campuses from kindergarten through college safe.
In the wake of Friday's school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has announced a state plan to review school safety in Virginia at all levels. McDonnell said Monday he plans to identify statewide and locality, school division, college and university resource needs to "ensure that we are doing everything humanly possible to keep our children, young people and educators safe while they are in the classroom." "Just as public safety is the bedrock responsibility of government, the safety of our young people must continue to be the top priority in our schools and our campuses," McDonnell said in a satement. In Fairfax County, there are regular safety and lockdown drills, and there was increased …
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Proposal could raise $500 million annually, but Virginia governor gives few details Wednesday at transportation conference in Tysons.
Gov. Bob McDonnell announced Wednesday a potential solution to Virginia’s growing transportation funding problem, but cautioned those gathered at his Annual Transportation Conference in Tysons Corner he’ll need to get it through the General Assembly’s 2013 session first. The governor’s proposed package, he said during a keynote appearance Wednesday, would eliminate the need to dip into construction money by 2019 and raise $500 million annually for new roads, bridges and transit projects. How exactly remains to be seen: McDonnell gave few details about his proposal, saying he would reveal specifics in the coming weeks. Maintenance takes priority to construction of new roads in Virginia, McDonnell said, and since 2002, approximately $3.3 …
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Industry leader Intelsat will bring 430 jobs from DC to the developing Tysons Corner.
Gov. Bob McDonnell announced Wednesday the world leader in satellite services will be moving its headquarters from Washington D.C. to Tysons in Fairfax County. Intelsat will bring 430 jobs to Northern Virginia, leasing approximately 188,000 square feet at the new Tysons Tower, which is still under construction. Officials expect a mid-2014 move-in date. “Adding an industry leader such as Intelsat, with its rich and storied history, to the roster of companies doing business in Virginia is a testament to the strong business climate that we are focused on continually improving,” McDonnell said in a statement. “I welcome Intelsat to Virginia, and am confident they will be a great corporate citizen and partner.” McDonnell approved a $1.3 million…