1998 Special Session I

Budget Bill - SB4001 (Introduced)

Secretary of Transportation

Item 514

Item 514

First Year - FY1999Second Year - FY2000
Administrative and Support Services (71900)$392,848$395,781
General Management and Direction (71901)FY1999 $392,848FY2000 $395,781
Fund Sources:  
Commonwealth TransportationFY1999 $392,848FY2000 $395,781

Authority: Title 2.1, Chapter 5.10 and § 2.1-51.10:l, Code of Virginia.

A. In the event that the Congress of the United States reauthorizes or extends the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) or authorizes a new transportation act prior to the next regular session of the General Assembly, the Commonwealth Transportation Board is hereby authorized to enter into contract or agreements, or take those actions necessary to cooperate with the United States Government, to secure the maximum level of federal funding for transportation programs in the Commonwealth. Included are contracts or agreements that provide for allocations of funds necessary to comply with federal law but which may differ from formulae provided in the Code of Virginia. The Chairman of the Board shall promptly report to the Governor and the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees any such actions required which are not consistent with the Code of Virginia.

B. The Secretaries of Transportation and Health and Human Resources shall review existing data and information pertaining to the adequacy of public transportation services to meet the needs throughout Virginia of the elderly, the disabled and other citizens for whom basic transportation is a serious challenge. The Secretaries also shall consult with organizations with special knowledge of this issue, review efforts by organizations to coordinate and cooperate in the delivery of transportation services, consider models used in other states to provide special transportation services, and evaluate state reimbursement rates for their adequacy. The Secretaries shall provide a report by December 20, 1998, to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees. The report shall include specific recommendations for service expansions, changes, cooperation, coordination, and funding.

C. The Secretary of Transportation shall study the costs of administration and operation of the Department of Rail and Public Transportation and the administrative agreements and understandings that currently exist between the Department of Rail and Public Transportation and the Department of Transportation. The objective of the study is to determine whether additional funds are required for the Department of Rail and Public Transportation to cover all of its administrative and operating costs. A report on the study, together with recommendations, shall be made to the Governor and the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees by November 12, 1999.

D. The Secretary of Transportation shall study alternative forms of operation, lease, or ownership of short-line railroads in Virginia, and make recommendations that would foster and encourage the long-term economic self-sufficiency of such railroads.

E. The Secretary of Transportation is authorized to negotiate a lawful memorandum of understanding agreement with Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and the proponents of magnetic levitation technology that could result in a financing agreement for a magnetic levitation research demonstration project at the University. Any allocation or loan of state transportation funds by the Commonwealth Transportation Board for a demonstration project shall not exceed $7,000,000, and shall require an equal amount of private matching funds. Any memorandum of understanding would require approval by the Board, and require that funds advanced for the demonstration project would be restored to the Commonwealth out of the proceeds of future magnetic levitation projects which utilize the demonstrated technology, in accordance with terms agreeable to the parties. The agreement would also include provisions relating to intellectual property and the terms of compensation for the sale of any technological innovations that the demonstration project may generate. For the purposes of this project, the university would be exempt from the capital appropriations process and the requirements of §2.1-504.2 and § 11-35, Code of Virginia. The University would make semi-annual reports to the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees on the progress of the project, including an account of how funds have been expended to date and the project's plans for the next six months. The Board would notify the Chairmen of the House Appropriations and Senate Finance Committees of the terms and conditions of any agreement at least 30 days prior to the effective date of the agreement.