Virginia Legislators Seek Transportation Funding

The two dozen legislators who represent South Hampton Roads (Virginia) remain divided over how best to tackle the region's road and transit needs, despite having been in special session for more than five months, according to The Virginian-Pilot.

In an effort to discern what consensus exists, The Virginian-Pilot surveyed state senators and delegates on their views about transportation. Seven declined to answer, noting they are already on the record for supporting taxes and tolls to finance road projects.

Two legislators, Del. Sal Iaquinto, R-Virginia Beach and Del. Chris Jones, R-Suffolk, mentioned increasing car rental fees as possible sources of income to finance road projects.

Six legislators support the creation of a regional transportation authority with the power to impose tolls on new and existing roads while others favor a statewide solution. Five would support diverting some money from the general fund to finance road projects, while five oppose the move, which would take away from health and education programs.

Other funding sources put forth by legislators include increases in sales, income and gasoline taxes; increases in local licensing and auto titling fees, hotel fees, bad driver fees and insurance premiums; and imposing tolls on new roads, bridges, tunnels and HOV lanes.

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