Warner's plan would fund highway, transit, rail, airport, port projects

Virginia Gov. Mark R. Warner (D) has proposed $824 million in new funds for a variety of transportation projects around the state. Of the total, $450 million would come from expected increases in federal and state aid; the other $374 million would be a repayment from the state's general fund to its Transportation Trust Fund.

Under the plan, announced Dec. 9, the biggest item, $256.4 million, would cover projects that were completed by last July 1 that were funded through deficit financing. Another $147 million would go for added money for highway, transit, airport and seaport projects, and $140 million would be used to set up a revolving loan fund for public-private transportation ventures. That fund would provide no-interest loans of as much as $30 million.

Warner also would use $97.4 million for highway and bridge maintenance and $80 million for transit, including $40 million for new rail cars for the Washington, D.C., area Metrorail system. In addition, $23 million would be allocated to set up the state's first dedicated money for passenger and freight rail projects.

The plan would require approval by the state legislature.

(Photo courtesy of Office of Gov. Warner)