Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Gas vs. Tolls

As has been noted here, oil hit $108/barrel, and gas prices are already over $3.10 in the 10th District. Gas and oil are more than a Virginia issue, they are a national issue, one custom built for Congress. Furthermore, reasonable, rational energy policies and fuel-efficiency are matters which Congress has considered often throughout Frank Wolf's tenure. And yet, Frank Wolf has really done nothing about these questions. Could it be that the over $147,000 he has received from the Automotive Industry throughout his career has influenced his perception of his priorities?

Instead of doing something about gas prices, which affect every resident of the 10th District every time they drive and are a national issue worthy of a Congressman's attention, Frank Wolf has focused his attention on Dulles Greenway tolls, an issue which does not impact every driver in the 10th District, and has a much smaller impact on the pocketbooks of his constituents relative to gas prices. Furthermore the, Greenway is a state government issue, not a national issue, one better left to state representatives and leaders.

Frank Wolf asks us to ignore what he can do something about, and rants about something he cannot do anything about.

Interestingly enough, he rants to the wrong people. Frank Wolf does not appear to even fully understand the Greenway, an issue which he has made a hallmark of his PR for the past two years.
Congressman Frank R. Wolf (R-10th) has been on a mission for several years to keep the tolls in check on the privately held Dulles Greenway.
Yesterday, Wolf continued his mission by urging the Virginia General Assembly to freeze the Greenway toll hikes.

He wrote in a letter to lawmakers: “I continue to believe that the original state law which created the public-private partnership for the Greenway is flawed because it fails to protect the consumer.”

The Greenway, however, is not a public-private partnership.

I’m assuming that Wolf is referring to the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995. Many projects were built as a result of this act, but the Dulles Greenway was not one of them.

The Dulles Greenway was built as a result of the Virginia Highway Corporation Act of 1988. This legislation gives the Virginia State Corporation Commission control over the toll road operator and is responsible to correct any abuse by such operator. - Living in LoCo
Frank Wolf has written the General Assembly on this issue, even though the Assembly is not the entity responsible for the Greenway!

It is clear that Frank Wolf is not interested in doing something about the real pocketbook issue - gas prices - and cannot even figure out the correct entity to talk to about his petty pocketbook issue, Greenway tolls. We need a Representative in Congress who not only knows what the real issues are, but who the real players are. We need Judy Feder.

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