General Assembly Update
February 28, 2011
GENERAL ASSEMBLY PASSES GOVERNOR’S TRANSPORTATION FUNDING BILL
Late yesterday evening, with just hours left before the General Assembly adjourned, legislators passed a compromise version of the Governor’s transportation funding bill. Involved with all of the proceedings, VTCA lobbied successfully to keep the major provisions of the legislation in place.
The legislation provides for:
The creation of the “Virginia Transportation Infrastructure Bank” (VTIB) to multiply transportation dollars through loans. The bank was originally to be capitalized with $150 million from the 2010 budget surplus and $250 million from VDOT audit-identified funds. The General Assembly reduced the general fund allocation (budget surplus) to $32.7 million. The McDonnell administration still has a goal of $1 billion total for the VTIB over the next few years.
Modifying the Virginia Code to authorize Direct GARVEE bonds. This would allow the Commonwealth to issue up to $1.1 billion in direct GARVEE bonds and utilize toll credits for state match.
Accelerating the sale of Capital Project Revenue bonds from 2007 transportation legislation (HB 3202) to a maximum of $600 million per year, providing ability to issue up to $1.8 billion in CPR bonds over the next three years. The CPR bonds would be used to: a) match federal highway funds; b) fulfill allocation requirements for revenue sharing; and, 3) pay for transportation construction projects statewide.
Increasing the availability of revenue sharing, specifically eliminating the $1 million cap per project and $50 million program maximum.
The Administration has identified a list of more than 800 projects that would be the priorities for funding. A list of those projects can be found at: Priority Projects