Sunday, February 24, 2013
Sen. Chap Petersen spoke out against the bill earlier this year.
Sunday, February 24
By Stephen Nielsen, Capital News Service A divided Virginia Senate on Saturday passed Gov. Bob McDonnell’s signature issue of the 2013 legislative session – a bill to overhaul the state’s system for funding transportation. Just hours before the session’s end, the Senate voted 25-15 for House Bill 2313, which will raise about $880 million a year more for roads and mass transit by increasing sales taxes while lowering the fuels tax. The debate over how to increase revenue continued right up to the vote. Fairfax-area Sen. Chap Petersen (D-Fairfax) voted against it. “This isn’t any bill. This is the only bill,” said Senate Majority Leader Thomas Norment, R-Williamsburg. He said it’s the only way to provide the revenue Virginia’s transportation…
Thursday, February 7, 2013
Funding package was derailed by Virginia Senate Democrats late Tuesday, though the House version of the legislation still has a chance for approval.
Thursday, February 7
By Whitney Spicer and Alix Hines, Capital News Service All 20 of Virginia's Democratic senators — including Vienna-area Sens. Chap Petersen (D-Fairfax) and Janet Howell (D-Reston) — voted against Gov. Bob McDonnell's transportation plan late Tuesday, effectively blocking the Senate's version of the proposal for this legislative session. The move makes it less likely Gov. Bob McDonnell will pass a transportation package in his last year in office. While the House amended and approved a version of the plan, HB 2313, earlier Tuesday, sending it to the Senate Finance Committee, Senate Democrats "vowed to block any proposal that generated less than $1.2 billion a year in new roads money," the Washington Examiner reports. That opposition is …
Thursday, January 31, 2013
Sen. Chap Petersen speaks out against eliminating the gas tax.
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 along party lines, 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…
Friday, January 25, 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. Senator Chap Petersen, who represents the 34th district including Fairfax City, said the plan "made no sense." 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, …
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Chap Petersen sounds off on McDonnell's new proposal to fund transportation projects.
Sen. Chap Petersen (D-34) called Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposal to eliminate the gas tax and fund state transportation projects by increasing the sales tax nonsensical in a blog post Wednesday. McDonnell's plan calls for the elimination of the 17.5 cents per gallon gas tax and an increase of the sales tax from 5 percent to 5.8 for more than $600 million in more transportation funds. Read more about the proposal here. If it passes, Virginia would be the first state to fund transportation projects this way. Petersen said: "The [Governor's] justification is that the gas tax at a fixed rate brings in less money in our hybrid age. But that hardly seems like a reason to jettison it. (And no other state has). Indeed, eliminating our traditional…
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Tell us: Do you think the governor's plan is a sustainable option for road maintenance and new projects?
Virginia residents could see a higher sales tax — and the state could become the first in the country to shed its gas tax — if a transportation plan unveiled by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell passes the state's General Assembly during its 2013 session. The five-year, $3.1 billion transportation overhaul is the governor's attempt to address some of the state's major road and infrastructure needs in coming years; $14 billion in projects are already underway across Virginia. McDonnell said the 17.5 cent tax on gasoline — which accounts for more than 30 percent of Virginia's transportation revenues — was "dated," blaming inflation and better mileage on the dollar for making it a stagnant funding source. Raising sales tax from 5 to 5.8 percent, …
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 increasing Virginia’s sales tax and abolishing its nearly 27-year-old gas tax Tuesday, 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 …
Tuesday, December 18, 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, Conn., 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 statement. 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 …
Saturday, August 25, 2012
Virginia's Governor has a prime speaking slot on Tuesday evening.
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell will give a speech on small business and the economy Tuesday during the Republican National Convention. According to The Richmond Times Dispatch’s Virginia politics blog, McDonnell’s keynote address will air after 8 p.m. on Tuesday — a premium speaking slot. McDonnell's speech is titled “We Built It,” referring to a remark made by President Barack Obama during a July event in Roanoke that has since become controversial on the campaign trail. Obama was speaking about the role of government investment in infrastructure and businesses when he said, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that,” Obama said in July. “Somebody else made that happen.” The statement, which some argue has been taken out of context in…