The Newsletter of TechPAC and NVTC

September 19, 2008

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In This Issue
The Long and Winding Toll Road
A State Senator Visits NVTC
What is TechPAC?


The Long and Winding Toll Road
U.S. Department of Transportation Officials Recommend Tolling to Ease Congestion

There may not be many months left in President Bush's administration, but his Transportation Secretary is trying to make the most of it. Last week in a meeting with members of the NVTC Board of Directors, Secretary Mary Peters and Under Secretary Tyler Duvall offered a glimpse into what may be their legacy — the addition or increase of tolls in congested regions nationwide.
Meeting with Secretary Peters
From left, NVTC CEO and President Bobbie Kilberg, Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters
and Under Secretary of Transportation Tyler Duvall

"We need creative people thinking about how to finance transportation solutions," Duvall said.

Peters outlined the situation to which Northern Virginians have become far too accustomed: trying to navigate through nightmare traffic.

"It isn't rush hour; it's rush periods," Peters said.

Duvall argued that highways should be considered a commodity that could be sold on the open market. He wondered "why highways are treated as a public good" when electricity and food are not.

While short on specifics in this meeting, in the last year Duvall and Peters have funded five experiments in "congestion pricing" in New York, San Francisco, Miami, Minneapolis and Seattle. Congestion pricing consists of tolls that increase during peak hours. New York, notably, rejected a three-year pilot program for implementation in Manhattan earlier this year.
Dan Bannister in meeting with Secretary Peters
Dan Bannister, Chairman Emeritus of NVTC, makes a point to Secretary Peters

NVTC Directors discussed funding solutions and strategic alternatives to solve the congestion problem. The possibility of a joint study between the U.S. Department of Transportation and NVTC was also raised.

"The meeting was a productive one," said Josh Levi, Vice President of Policy at NVTC. "We're all trying to find solutions to the transportation problems that plague our members. We certainly appreciate Secretary Peters reaching out to Northern Virginia technology leaders to discuss some of the innovative transportation initiatives policymakers are considering."

Meeting with Secretary Peters

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A State Senator Visits NVTC
Sen. George Barker Discusses Transportation Funding, Health Care and Education

Members of the NVTC TechPAC Board of Trustees hosted Senator George Barker(D-Fairfax and Prince William Counties) for an informal lunch meeting recently. During the 90-minute meeting, the Northern Virginia Senator and NVTC technology executives discussed a broad range of policy issues, including transportation funding, the cohesiveness of the Northern Virginia Delegation in Richmond, and strategies to bolster the number of students graduating with backgrounds in math, science, engineering and healthcare issues. Senator Barker was first elected to represent the 39th District in the Virginia Senate in 2007. He serves on the Education and Health, General Laws and Technology, Privileges and Elections and Rehabilitation and Social Services Committees.


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What is TechPAC?
Quite simply, TechPac is the political arm of the Northern Virginia Technology Council. It is a committee devoted to supporting political candidates who share the same goals as the members of NVTC: to ensure a pro-business environment for technology companies in Northern Virginia.

TechPAC is a key benefit of membership that complements the comprehensive, valuable array of programs, policy advocacy and business services NVTC offers to bolster the success of our member companies. TechPAC strengthens the technology industry in Northern Virginia and has a positive impact on the economic growth of the region. It is essential to have TechPAC to compete for priorities against other well-organized industries in the Commonwealth, and it allows NVTC members to combine our financial resources to support Virginia General Assembly candidates and other candidates for state office who champion issues of importance to our technology business community. By pooling our resources, NVTC can have a stronger voice in Richmond — and better protect and enhance our industry's and our members' professional interests. Last year, TechPAC was able to donate more than $100,000 in support of 87 Democratic and Republican legislative candidates across the state.

In this new newsletter, we will explore TechPAC's ongoing activies on behalf of NVTC's other policy initiatives. We hope you will find TechPolitic a valuable resource as we enter a crucial season of politics here in Virginia.

To learn more about TechPAC, please visit: www.nvtctechpac.org


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