The recently passed Virginia transportation funding bill HB 2313 is not favorable to northern Virginia. It eliminates cents per gallon tax at the pump that is estimated to generate $4.5 billion during the 5 years ending 2018 and imposes new taxes that generate an estimated $5.9 billion during the same period. The new taxes include sales taxes, regional sales taxes, car taxes, personal property taxes, vehicle taxes, vending machine taxes, hybrid taxes, heavy equipment taxes, commercial taxes. hotel taxes and diesel fuel taxes. But, the bill continues the long-standing history of shortchanging northern Virginia in allocating taxes collected to localities. The transportation allocation formula always favored the southern part of Virginia and in at least one instance for every dollar of gas taxes collected in Northern Virginia and sent to Richmond, northern Virginia only received 20 cents on the dollar. So after years of being shortchanged it continues under HB 2313. But, what makes matters worse, HB 2313 imposes only on the Northern Virginia Region, a 0.7 percent sales tax, .25 percent per $100 grantor tax and a 3 percent transient occupancy tax to help pay for its own transportation needs because, according to one top elected Virginia official, it can afford to pay for its own transportation needs.
The northern Virginia delegation consisting of Democrats and Republicans failed northern Virginia interests and taxpayers. Those who voted for the bill failed because they caved to the southern part of the state on taxes and allocation of funds collected. Those who voted against the bill failed to persuade the rest of the northern Virginia delegation to stand their ground and demand what is right for northern Virginia and the rest of the Commonwealth.
To find out how your state delegate and state senator voted on HB 2313, go to web site Lis.Virginia.gov. You can also access the House Appropriation web site, http://HAC.Virginia.gov to get easy to read and understand data on taxes and allocations to become better informed and to use the data if you have questions for your delegate and state senator.