OMT One Man's Trash...from Norman Leahy

Monday, April 03, 2006 :::

Another Attempt at a Deal

Via the NV Daily, comes this -- the House's version of "let's make a (budget) deal":

The House proposal, formerly offered to the Senate conferees by their counterparts from the House on March 22, would have both sides finding agreement on all areas of the budget except transportation.

For funding related to transportation, agreement would be reached on all areas where both bodies concur – such as the utilization of abuser fees for funding. All remaining moneys that were not allocated would be set aside in a special “Transportation Reserve Fund.” That reserve fund, as well as any additional revenues that might be approved by both bodies, would be dealt with by the General Assembly in a special session.

If accepted, the House proposal would allow local governments to properly plan for the remainder of the year, as a budget would be approved promptly and all funding other than transportation increases would be firmly established.

Gradualism...but forward progress. It would also seem to put some degree on pressure on the Senate, or at least attempt to flush them out from behind the skirts of local governments.

Of note from the Handout are these items:

The appropriation shall be used to:

·Expedite the completion of highway, port, rail and mass transit projects across the Commonwealth, including those projects designated by Congress requiring matching funds;

·Offset the debt service payment requirements on the Transportation Trust Fund attributable to the $317 million of Federal Reimbursement Anticipation Notes issued to replace the monies diverted to the general fund in 2003; and

·Provide funding for a Northern Virginia Transportation Investment Fund and a Hampton Roads Transportation Investment Fund to address the specific transportation needs of those regions.

So this move would also seem to cut off the argument that Virginia would throw away its federal highway money, while talking-up regional transportation needs. Sharp.

::: posted by Norman Leahy at 4/03/2006 0 comments


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