Loudoun sets legislative priorities

January 2, 2013

Loudoun County’s agenda for the upcoming Virginia General Assembly session is focused heavily on transportation — a top issue in the region’s fastest-growing jurisdiction — but the county’s legislative priorities include issues such as land use, taxing authority and education. In the 2013 session, Loudoun officials will lobby on behalf of these positions:

TRANSPORTATION

Loudoun officials will push for increased state funding for primary and secondary road projects and maintenance throughout the county. Officials say the continued economic vitality of Loudoun requires greater state investments in transportation infrastructure. Top priorities include the widening of Route 606 (Old Ox Road/Loudoun County Parkway) between routes 50 and 28; improvements to Waxpool Road; the widening of Belmont Ridge Road between Gloucester Parkway and Hay Road, and between Truro Parish Drive and Croson Lane; and the interchange between routes 606 and 50.

The county will also support legislation aimed at implementing distance- and time-based tolls on the Dulles Greenway, a mounting concern for residents and officials who want the ever-increasing toll prices on the privately owned road to be lowered to help relieve congestion on nearby thoroughfares.

LAND USE

The county supports maintaining its current statutory authority over land use and development, keeping the ability to plan, zone and enforce land-use regulations on a local level. Loudoun officials have gone on record opposing any legislative measures that would compromise that authority.

TAXING AUTHORITY

Loudoun, which like most jurisdictions relies heavily on property taxes to fund public operations and projects, supports keeping its existing taxing authority. The county opposes reducing or eliminating any local tax revenue streams, which officials say would put more pressure on property owners and real estate taxes.

Loudoun is also seeking legislation that would allow the county to impose an admissions tax into all events hosted at a “professional or semiprofessional stadium,” referring to the combination ballpark and soccer stadium proposed as a part of the One Loudoun development.

EDUCATION

The county will seek an increase in state education funding to help fully pay the costs of meeting the Standards of Quality. In the event that funding for public education is cut, Loudoun supports relaxing state mandates to give local school divisions more flexibility to focus resources where they are most needed. The county also seeks state funds to help pay for new school construction, renovation of facilities and technology infrastructure.

Caitlin Gibson is a local news and features writer for The Washington Post.
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