Public Comments for 02/02/2021 Transportation
HB1765 - U.S. Route 60; Dept. of Transportation to propose a plan to renumber a certain portion in Lexington.
We ask the committee to evaluate whether this bill if passed would require those who haul unrefined forest logs, trees, chips, etc. to lower its legally allowable hauling weight to 80,000 pounds. Current VA law allows our industry to legally haul up 90,000 pounds on Virginia highways. However, we are required to carry a maximum weight of 80,000 pounds on federal highways. We understand Delegate Campbell's concerns but ask that you not harm our industry. The area has a robust forest products industry with mills in Buena Vista, Covington, and nearby areas. Our business needs the benefits passed by General Assembly to maintain a safe and competitive industry. Thank you.
HB1861 - Compression release engine brakes; use of brakes in localities.
Our organization represents many members operating petroleum transports across the Commonwealth to fuel more than 3,700 stations selling gasoline and diesel to consumers and businesses. We join with the Virginia trucking association in opposing this bill as it would creating a patchwork quilt of laws creating logistical disruptions and potentially resulting in product outages for drivers Thank you for your consideration
We oppose HB 1861 because it attempts to address a noise problem created by vehicle operators who have illegally altered their muffler system by banning the legal use of engine brakes, which are brake safety devices, on all vehicles, including those operating legally in compliance with muffler equipment and noise regulations.
HB1910 - Regional transportation authorities; creation.
Dear Delegates, The Stafford County Board of Supervisors (Board) wishes to express its opposition to House Bill 1910. This bill proposes to create a Fredericksburg Regional Transportation Improvement Committee comprised of the member localities of Planning District 16. Neither the Board of Supervisors, County staff, nor the Fredericksburg Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (FAMPO) were consulted prior to the introduction of this legislation. The Board has the following concerns about this proposed legislation: HB 1910 Impedes the Efforts of FAMPO and GWRC – FAMPO and GWRC are the bodies responsible for regional transportation planning and distribution of state and federal transportation funds to regional transportation efforts in Planning District 16. HB 1910 Places an Unfair Funding Burden on Stafford County – HB 1910 proposes that the member localities fund the Fredericksburg Regional Transportation Improvement Committee with contribution amounts based on the relative population of each locality. HB 1910 Denies Stafford Fair Representation – The Fredericksburg Regional Transportation Improvement Committee’s voting members would include the member localities of Planning District 16, Under this funding model, Stafford would be required to contribute more of it’s local taxpayer dollars to the Committee but would not receive a commensurate share of voting privileges. HB 1910 Limits Local Eligibility for Federal and State Transportation Funding – The introduction of another transportation body in Planning District 16 with access to funding will further dilute an already small funding pot of state and federal transportation dollars. HB 1910 Reduces Local Control over Transportation Planning – Localities know best the conditions of their road networks and the specific demands of their residents. Creating this Committee will reduce local control and prioritize regional initiatives over locality specific transportation needs, thereby minimizing effective local transportation planning. The Stafford County Board of Supervisors intends to adopt proposed Resolution R21-77, formally opposing HB 1910, at its February 2nd meeting. Given the fast-moving nature of the General Assembly, it is imperative the legislators be aware of our opposition and the circumstances surrounding this proposed legislation. We respectfully urge you to oppose this legislation. Sincerely, Crystal L. Vanuch, Chairman Stafford County Board of Supervisors Rock Hill District
My name is Stephen Grammer, from Roanoke Virginia. Transportation is a huge barrier for the disability community. I encourage you to pass HB1910. This will allow us to travel. We need to go without any barriers between different counties and cities. Again, I encourage you to pass HB1910. Thank you for your time and consideration.
The Virginia League of Conservation Voters requests this bill go by for the day in order to resolve several concerns: This bill authorizes any two or more adjacent counties or cities to create a regional transportation authority. Any such authority is a political subdivision of the Commonwealth. Membership can subsequently be expanded to include any locality within the region that would have been eligible to be an initial member. This would mean even more regional transportation authorities that are increasingly causing concern because they can evade a number of key federal requirements and possibly state oversight as well. Indeed, this bill would seem to give them clear authority to take on state highway projects as long as they consult with the CTB. The Virginia League of Conservation Voters would appreciate the opportunity to discuss this bill further with the bill patron.
HB 1910 authorizes any two or more adjacent counties or cities to create a regional transportation authority. Any such authority would be a political subdivision of the Commonwealth with broad powers. While we do not oppose this bill at this time, it does raise serious concerns. In the past 5 years, the General Assembly has authorized or created regional transportation authorities in the Commonwealth’s three largest regions (Northern Virginia, Hampton Roads, and Richmond) and on the I-81 corridor. This bill would substantially expand that scope allowing any two localities not part of one of these authorities to create their own authority. Each of these new authorities would be a political subdivision of the Commonwealth with significant powers. The potential proliferation of unelected political subdivisions raises issues such as accountability. And it further balkanizes Virginia’s transportation program. Moreover, there are already growing concerns about the ability of the regional transportation authorities that have already been created to fund projects on state highways that increase future maintenance costs state taxpayers must bear without approval by the Commonwealth Transportation Board. In addition, these authorities in some cases have sought to evade key federal environmental requirements and possibly state oversight as well. Since the existing transportation authorities are limited to regions with a significant number of localities, population, and geographic area, these concerns are somewhat lessened but still need to be addressed with regard to existing authorities. These concerns will be magnified if HB 1910 passes and any two localities can create such an authority. At the very least, it might be in order to study the track record and impacts of regional transportation authorities before such a broad potential expansion, and to require at least major projects pursued by any additional transportation authority to at least require CTB approval and provide for some level of environmental review. These concerns should be addressed before this bill goes any further. Thank you. Trip Pollard Senior Attorney Southern Environmental Law Center
I support HB1910. This is long overdue to give our Fredericksburg Region the opportunity to Raise over $35 million annually reducing the burden on state budgets and increase funding for transit, rail, and road projects desperately needed. Thank you to Delegate Joshua Cole for your leadership.
The Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce supports this legislation.
The Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce supports HB1910. All localities should have the right to create a Regional Transportation Authority. A regional transportation authority in our area could: 1) Raise over $35 million annually reducing the burden on state budgets 2) Increase funding for transit, rail, and road projects desperately needed 3) Give the region funding to match or leverage Smart Scale funds increasing the effectiveness of that program 4) Increase economic opportunity for the over 350,000 residents in the Fredericksburg region Please vote to support HB1910.
HB2024 - Dept. of Transportation to work w/ Patrick County in constructing replica.
HB2104 - Virginia Highway Corporation Act of 1988; repeals Act.
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