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Profile in Timidity 8.29.31 Richmond Times-Dispatch
"Profile in Timidity"

The Richmond Times-Dispatch August 29, 2012 editorial hammers the proverbial nail head.
The Bell Tolls: Transportation
Reprinted from Richmond Times-Dispatch
"The Virginia Department of Transportation has ambitious plans for the revenue generated by tolls...
"According to VDOT, current funding cannot meet the needs for maintenance and improvements associated with the I-95 corridor. Tolls would close some of the gap. Tolls remain a legitimate way to raise money for highways and related infrastructure. They also remain a secondary option. Ideally, tolls supplement gasoline taxes.
"Virginia's political climate discourages common-sense approaches to transportation. The gasoline tax has not been raised since the 1980s; in constant dollars the levy does not buy as much as it once did. Conservatives believe in paying the state's bills - or at least they should. Hostility to big government ought not to translate into opposition to all government. Transportation defines a core service. It stakes a legitimate claim to public resources. The gasoline tax is a user's fee. Raise it.
"The Times-Dispatch does not oppose tolls in principle. Tolls should be complements, not substitutes or political dodges. The wish list accompanying Virginia's application for tolls on I-95 makes a compelling case for increasing the gasoline tax. What we have instead is a profile in timidity."