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Reston Transportation Service District Created by County Board of Supervisors

by Dave Emke — April 6, 2017 at 2:45 pm 18 Comments

At its meeting Tuesday, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted to officially establish the Reston Transportation Service District, part of the 40-year, $2.27 billion plan to upgrade roadways in Reston’s Transit Station Area.

Supervisors in February approved the project’s funding plan, which includes a proposed 2.1 cent/$100 of assessed value tax assessed to properties in the Transit Station Area. That rate will be discussed and finalized when the county budget is approved in May.

The overall project includes road widening and upgrades to intersections and interchanges, in addition to construction of new Dulles Toll Road crossings, including at Town Center Parkway and Soapstone Drive. Roadway projects would be paid for with public revenue, while work on intersections and the street grid would be covered by private funding.

Under the agreed-upon plan, current homeowners in the TSA will be responsible for up to $44.6 million of the estimated cost. The remainder of the tax funds (totaling $350 million) will be collected from commercial/industrial properties and from residential properties built in the future. The rest of private funds, about $716 million, is expected to be collected through in-kind contributions to the grid by developers.

In addition, the board voted Tuesday to create a 13-member advisory group for the service district. The group will consist of the following members:

  • One member from the Dranesville District
  • Two members from the Hunter Mill District
  • Three members to represent residential owners and homeowner/civic associations
  • One member to represent apartment or rental owner associations
  • One member to represent residents of Reston Town Center
  • Three members to represent commercial or retail ownership interests, including the Reston Town Center Association
  • One member from the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce to represent lessees of non-residential space
  • One member from Reston Association

Among the group’s responsibilities, county Department of Transportation Director Tom Biesiadny said, would be to “work with staff to ensure that estimated funding levels are coordinated with construction of transportation projects, that the timing of the construction is coordinated with development, and that the funding is being spent in an appropriate and efficient manner.”

Supervisors Linda Smyth (Providence District) and Pat Herrity (Springfield District) both abstained from the votes, as they have throughout the process. Herrity once again stated that the cost of the project, which he called “gold-plated,” is too high.

We’re taxing our residents out of the county and I think we’re going to see some of them fleeing Reston,” Herrity said.

A pair of TSA residents who spoke during a public hearing Tuesday, Robert Perry and Hank Schonzeit, both expressed feelings that taxing a small group of residents for work that benefits the entire community — as well as developers — is unfair.

If you’re going to have a situation where you’re going to try to flog us the most you can get away with, in the smallest possible area for the fewest taxpayers, I say that’s not fair,” Perry said. “The developers who probably live in a different state who are getting rich from this [are] the ones that should bear the payment, not us.”

Developers will be responsible for 96 percent of the private share of the project, Biesiadny said, and 53 percent (about $1.2 billion) of the project is to be paid out of the county coffers. Supervisor Cathy Hudgins (Hunter Mill District) said that while developers will be benefiting from the major road improvements, she believes residents will see the benefits of the work as well.

“We’re hoping it will not be considered onerous, but I think anytime we ask the citizens to [be taxed], they may assume it’s going to be an onerous assessment,” Hudgins said. “But I think they’ll see the return.”

  • 30yearsinreston

    Hudgins thinks ?
    She only thinks of the developers
    Socialize the costs and privatize the profits for cronies
    The developers should be paying for all of it
    This ‘advisory group’ is a useless waste of time

    • Umust B Kidding

      Actually, she’s focused on generating property tax revenues from any source because she and her Board-mates couldn’t manage a personal checkbook much less County costs.

      So, she’ll vote for development and she’ll impose new taxes and raise tax rates any time she can get away with it.

      • Greg

        Only time Hudgins doesn’t get away with raising taxes is when we get to vote on them directly.

        Even then, most of them pass, but her beloved “food tax” was defeated twice. Yet she goes on an on and HOA meetings as if it was the one and only thing that will save us from ourselves.

        The audacity of taxing food at 10 percent. Has Hudgins he no shame?

        • 30yearsinreston

          She eats in loudon

  • Greg

    BOHICA. We said this was coming years ago when the silver line was being jammed through. We were, of course, promised by Hudgins, Plum, and the metro boosters that we would have nothing to worry about and our taxes would not rise.

    These taxes, of course, are atop the increased toll-road tolls and airport user fees and the 1.5 % increase in the sales tax.

    Next up will be a regional sales tax to bail out the rest of Metro that Hudgins has mismanaged into near death.

    Just today we learned that metro wasted over $109 million over 8 long years on fixing the automated train controls and scrapped it all. So much for a safe comfortable ride. It’s gone the way of reliable and affordable metro fares. Thank you so much, Cathy Hudgins!

    http://wamu.org/story/17/04/06/metro-shelves-plans-bring-back-automated-trains/

    • 30yearsinreston

      She is a total disaster
      I dont know who is worse
      Her or Plum

  • EliteinReston

    So the transportation tax bill would be about $89 a year based on Reston’s average assessment of $426,237.

  • EliteinReston

    So the transportation tax bill would be about $89 a year based on Reston’s average assessment of $426,237. I wonder if Boston Properties will pay its share from the revenue it collects from parking fees.

    • Greg

      Doubtful, since that revenue is not property, but it should have to pay the BPOL and gross-receipts taxes.

  • Donald

    Anyone notice the golf courses that directly border the Reston Transportation Service District?

    Donald

    • 30yearsinreston

      Yep
      Anyone notice the new roads at the spectrum fhat we will all be paying for

  • Chkitout1

    Keep voting Democrat Reston/Fairfax. There isn’t a tax Democrats don’t like.

  • June Smith

    Which “current Reston homeowners” on which streets will be “taxed” and which streets are exempt from this tax? Is there a listing anywhere?

    • Umust B Kidding

      Wake up and look at the map in this article.

      • June Smith

        I want an actual list of current homes that are subject to this tax by address. There are some streets where the TSA is half of the street and only one side … there are some HOAs where some are subject to the tax and others are not

        The office of assessment should have a list – by street address – of each and every CURRENT home that will be subject to this tax … if it is too extensive to publish in this report – there should be at least a link to these addresses.

        This is essential information – especially for people who are buying or selling in Reston.

        • Greg

          I agree.

  • RVA_101

    Haha! RestonNow strikes again. So after all the whining about how the county doesn’t anything about roads, they finally come out with a road plan and now you guys don’t like that you have to actually *pay* for it. LMFAO. Entitled losers. Roads can’t pay for themselves, and what better way to pay for it than taxing the ones who want it the most? You guys got what you wanted, now sit down, shut up and pay up. You asked for it.

    • Mike M

      How will this benefit the community? Will this end the logjam on Sunrise Valley at rush hour? Will it speed up cross-Reston travel at rush hour from 45 minutes to . . . .? This is a gift to the developers off the backs of the residents.

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