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2017 Legislative Agenda
Town of Vienna 2017 Legislative Agenda

On November 13,  2017, the Citizens of the Town of Vienna, through its duly elected Town Council, adopted the following Legislative Agenda at a public hearing and respectfully proposes to the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia the following:

2018 Legislative Agenda Items:

1.              The Town of Vienna requests language to be added to specifically include “new sidewalk projects” as eligible for HB 2313 funding.  An expanded sidewalk network provides transportation options and reduces motorized vehicle use and congestion.  Revised transportation funding ranking criteria language under HB  2313, HB 2, HB 599 regarding “congestion mitigation” and “additional capacity” should specifically include sidewalk funding in dense urban areas where providing alternative means of transportation reduces single-occupancy auto use.

2.              The Town of Vienna supports restoration of full 599 funding to localities.

VML Program position:

State Assistance to Local Police Departments (HB 599) Almost 70 percent of Virginians live in communities served by police departments. The state created a program of financial assistance to local police departments, but has increasingly de-emphasized this funding obligation as a priority. VML calls for the state to honor its commitment to public safety by funding the program as stipulated in the Code of Virginia.

3.              The Town of Vienna supports a change to the VDOT local road maintenance funding formula from lane mileage to lane volume: or, in the alternative, request changes that provide additional funding to localities that maintain their roads and have roads that exceed the statewide average traffic volumes for such types of roads by more than 20%.  In addition, the Town of Vienna supports a change to the composition to the Commonwealth Transportation Board to have greater representation to the urban/dense suburban areas of the Commonwealth.

VML Program position: Transportation and Transit Funding VML recognizes the importance and critical support provided by the Commonwealth for local and regional transportation and transit capital needs. To that end, VML believes the projected decline in state funding over the upcoming biennia will negatively affect the movement 3 of people and goods, thereby hindering economic development, jeopardizing public safety and degrading the quality of life in our localities. The state should continue to financially support transportation and transit capital needs, exploring all options including the issuance of Commonwealth bonds. VML supports adequate funding of the Smart Scale (HB 2) program in addressing transportation and transit needs.

Roadway Maintenance Payments; Bicycle Lanes VML supports the ability of cities and towns that receive roadway maintenance payments from the Commonwealth based on moving-lane miles of roadway to not see their payments reduced if moving-lane miles of roadway are converted to bicycle-only lanes. Municipalities will not reduce their funding after a conversion

4.              Virginia Code §2.2-4304 (cooperative procurement) should be amended to permit localities to use competitively bid construction contracts for certain projects not exceeding $200,000

Last year the GA struck language in the cooperative procurement provisions of the Virginia Procurement Act that previously permitted localities to ride certain construction contracts.

Relevant Virginia Code § 2.2-4304 amendments:

  B. In addition, a public body may purchase from another public body's contract or from the contract of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments even if it did not participate in the request for proposal or invitation to bid, if the request for proposal or invitation to bid specified that the procurement was a cooperative procurement being conducted on behalf of other public bodies, except for:

1. Contracts for architectural or engineering services; or

2. Construction 

The Town of Vienna has been impacted financially by the amendment to Virginia Code §2.2-4304.  The estimated additional cost to the Town in the past year is estimated to be $73,884.50 (Chart is attached).The Town of Vienna supports the Virginia Municipal League’s adopted position on Water Quality Funding/Wastewater Discharge and Pollutant Allocation Limits.

5.              VML Program position:

Water Quality Funding / Wastewater Discharge and Pollutant Allocation Limits VML requests that the General Assembly provide sufficient appropriations to the Water Quality Improvement Fund (WQIF) to fulfill point source upgrade contracts with local governments as well as cost-share payments to farm operators for the implementation of agricultural best management practices. Additionally, VML requests that the General Assembly provide sufficient appropriations, including dedicated revenues to the Stormwater Local Assistance Fund (SLAF) to address costs associated with permit requirements tied to federal Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) and new EPA regulations. VML opposes any legislation that would reduce or limit local government’s sewage discharge capacity, including nutrient allocations, as such capacity and allocations are critical to our members’ economic development efforts.

6.              The Town of Vienna supports and amendment to Virginia State Code Section 15.2-107.1 relating to newspaper legal advertisement requirements.  Current requirements add expense and are considered not generally viewed by the public.

Proposed amendment as follows:

15.2-107.1 Advertisement of legal notices on web sites

In addition to any requirements that a locality advertise legal notices in a newspaper having a general circulation in the locality, such notices may also be published on the locality's website.

However notwithstanding any other provision of law, general or special, in any town within the counties of Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William legal notices may be published on the locality’s website instead of in a newspaper having general circulation in the locality.

7.              Towns should have one vote as a member of the Northern Virginia Regional Transportation Authority (NVTA).  Virginia Code Sections 33.2-2501 et seq. should be amended accordingly.

8.              The Town of Vienna opposes any bill that reduces or eliminates local land use authority.

9.              The Town of Vienna supports revenue sharing mechanisms between localities and the state.

10.         The Town of Vienna supports the Virginia Municipal League’s Legislative Program as adopted by the VML Board for the 2017 legislative session and specifically asks the General Assemble to consider the following:

  1. Specific local revenue authority and sources cannot be further restricted without first granting and providing alternative revenue authority with reliable, sustainable revenue sources. This includes, without limitation, the BPOL and M&T taxes.
  2. Local governments should be involved in any discussions relating to local taxing authority including legislation that exempts specific industries from local taxes and fees.
  3. Local general fund revenue and special funds cannot be confiscated or re-directed to the state treasury.
  4. Placing additional administrative burdens on local governments without sufficient resources or administrative flexibility jeopardizes the quality of services delivered at the local level. Local governments cannot be expected to bear the expenses related to the imposition of new funding requirements or the expansion of existing ones on services delivered at the local level without a commensurate increase of state financial assistance or new local taxing authority.
  5. Shifting traditional state funding responsibilities onto local governments for services including public education, law enforcement, and public safety activities and any core services affecting local government, is bad fiscal policy, resulting in stress on local finances without reductions in overall program costs.

11.            The Town of Vienna requests an amendment to Va. Code Section 15.2-961.1 “Conservation of trees during land development process in localities in Planning District 8”; and/or Va. Code Section 15.2-961 “Replacement of trees during development process in certain localities (the general code provision).”  Specifically the Town requests local zoning authority to provide tree canopy credits for development that preserves medium and large trees on lots under development and/or the authority to require developers to ensure 20% tree canopy coverage in 10 years rather than 20 years.  Currently only the City of Williamsburg and jurisdictions with such a provision prior to 1990.

12.            The Town of Vienna opposes legislation that reduces the current local government authority to review and approve applications for the use of the public right-of-way, including such use by wireless telecommunication providers.

13.            The Town of Vienna opposes legislation that reduces the current local government authority to review and regulate short term rental activity, including such entities as AirBnB.  Localities should retain their current zoning and taxing authority.