Dulles Greenway toll bills die in Va. General Assembly committees

Two bills that could have led to reduced toll charges and instituted distance-based tolling on the Dulles Greenway, but also require rejiggering a new Virginia law, have been stopped in Richmond — at least for this year.

Bills filed by Del. David Reid , D-Loudoun, and Sen. Jennifer Boysko, D-Loudoun, have been tabled until the 2023 Virginia General Assembly session, after stalling in each chamber’s transportation committees.

Reid and Boysko sought to institute distance-based tolling on the 14-mile private road, and that could have resulted in lowering of current toll rates. However, the bills would have allowed the owners of the Greenway to negotiate a new deal on tolls with the Youngkin administration, and shielded disclosure of the Greenway owner’s financial data.

Last year, then-Gov. Ralph Northam signed a bill co-authored by Del. Suhas Subramanyam and Sen. John Bell that gives regulation authority to the State Corporation Commission.

Under the current law, any applicant for a toll increase would need to run the changes by the Virginia Department of Transportation, and show that “the proposed rates will be reasonable to the user in relative benefit obtained, not likely to materially discourage use of the roadway, and provide the operator no more than a reasonable return.”

While Reid and Boysko’s bills could have led to distance tolling, they also required non-disclosure agreements for county officials who would provide input in future toll discussions, but not have a vote.

Loudoun County Administrator Tim Hemstreet testified before the House committee: “Because this road is exclusively in Loudoun County and the majority of people that use it are Loudoun County residents, we feel very strongly that the county should have input on the final deal and what the end result is,” according to Loudoun Now.

“The Greenway is a part of the regional transportation network, and we welcome the opportunity to work with the Commonwealth, VDOT and Loudoun County to discuss distance-based pricing, which will be more cost-effective for drivers in our region,” Dulles Greenway said in a statement.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a general assignment reporter with WTOP since 1997. He says he looks forward to coming to work every day, even though that means waking up at 3:30 a.m.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up