The following letter, which advocates that any fines collected for delays in completing the Silver Line be applied to buying down the tolls for Phase 2 of the project, was sent by RCA Board member and Reston 2020 co-chair Terry Maynard to Congressman Gerry Connolly on February 28, 2014.
Dear Congressman Connolly,
As a Restonian and fellow advocate of the Silver Line, I would like to ask you—as a leader in advancing the Silver Line’s completion—to pursue further financial assistance in alleviating the terrible toll increase burden Dulles Toll Road users are paying for its construction. It appears that an opening is available: If, as reported by the Washington Post, Dulles Transit Partners (DTP) faces substantial fines for further delays in completing the line, I believe that every last cent of those fines should go to stabilizing DTR tolls. Although the projected sums of the fines are not large compared with the multi-billion dollar price tag of Phase 1 of the line’s construction, we are at the point where every dollar counts.
My greatest fear is that fines paid to MWAA will not be used in a manner that advances the Silver Line, much less eases the financial burden on DTR users. I also do not think that the “funding partners” allocation of these funds is an equitable or fair way to handle any forthcoming fine revenue. As you know well, DTR users are now stuck with about half of the cost of Phase 1 of the Silver Line under the “funding partners” agreement—and most of them won't be able to use the Silver Line to get to their destinations. Assuring that any fine revenue is directed at easing their growing toll burden would be one small step toward correcting this inequitable arrangement.
I hope that you can make sure that the $30 million or so in fines that the Post suggests may be forthcoming will be directly applied to the share of the construction cost borne by DTR users.
In the meantime, thank you for all that you have done to advance the Silver Line’s construction. I certainly hope that its completion is near at hand and we can begin riding the rails soon.
Board of Directors, Reston Citizen Association
Co-Chair, RCA Reston 2020 Committee