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Virginia's McDonnell outlines 2012 transportation plan

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Capital Land,Liz Essley

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell unveiled an outline of his 2012 transportation plan at the state's transportation conference in Norfolk Thursday.

The plan, meant to follow up on last year's $3 billion infrastructure investment, squeezes more money for roads and bridges out of existing revenue sources.

The plan includes increasing the percentage of state sales tax dedicated to transportation from 0.5 percent to 0.75 percent over the next eight years, an increase the governor predicts will add $110 million to transportation coffers.

The plan would also allocate 75 percent of any year-end surpluses to transportation. About $100 million in surplus funds have been spent on transportation over the last two years.

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  • “Transportation and economic development and prosperity are inextricably linked,” McDonnell said in a statement. “Whether it’s the infrastructure needed to move people and goods, or certain transportation-related industries poised for major growth and job creation, we must continue to make progress in improving our transportation networks if Virginia is to remain economically competitive."

    The governor's plan also includes providing matching funds for localities maintaining their own roads — a measure that could be seen as a step toward the "road devolution" feared by local leaders.

    The governor will elaborate on his plan before the 2012 session of the General Assembly.

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