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Metro Silver Line and Sales Tax Holiday: The Comstock Connection
Thursday, July 31, 2014

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Contact Me
District Mailing Address:
PO Box 6156
McLean, VA 22106
District Office Location:
1356 Beverly Road
Suite 250
McLean, Virginia 22101
Paid for and authorized by Friends of Barbara Comstock

August 2014 


I wanted to take this opportunity to share some information with you that you may find helpful. 


As always, please don't hesitate to contact my office on matters of concern to you.  I can be reached by email at[email protected] or by phone at 703-772-7168.

Metro Silver Line
The new Metro Silver Line opened this past Saturday, July 26th.  Silver Line trains operate between Reston and Largo, Maryland including stops at five new stations: McLean, Tyson's Corner, Greensboro, Spring Hill, and Wiehle-Reston East.

I was pleased to join my federal, state and local colleagues at the ribbon cutting event to celebrate the opening of the Silver Line.  The Silver Line will be an important part of our transportation network and will be part of our efforts to continue to bring prosperity to our region and Dulles airport. 

As we move forward on Phase II of Dulles Rail, I am pleased that my competitive bidding legislation, supported by the Virginia Chamber, the Loudoun Board of Supervisors and our business community, has already contributed to saving hundreds of millions of dollars on the second phase of the project.  On the federal level, we need to find similar ways to increase competition, save taxpayer's money and stretch our taxpayer's transportation dollars further.

For information on the Silver Line, including fares, travel times, and station information please visit their website:http://silverlinemetro.com.

Loudoun County Silver Line Bus Schedule:http://loudoun.gov/index.aspx?NID=3088

Fairfax County Silver Line Bus Schedule:http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/connector/routes/silverline/
Pictured (from left to right): Governor Terry McAuliffe, Supervisor Pat Herrity, Former Congressman Tom Davis, Delegate David Ramadan, Congressman Frank Wolf, Delegate Barbara Comstock.
Virginia Sales Tax Holiday


The annual back-to-school sales tax holiday is Friday, August 1st through Sunday, August 3rd.  During these three days, certain school supplies, clothing and footwear will be exempt from the Virginia sales tax. 


As in past years, a variety of school supplies, including notebooks, pens, binders, calculators, paints and crayons, will be tax-free as long as each item costs $20 or less. Most clothing items and footwear will also be exempt from the state sales tax as long as they are priced at $100 or less each.  There is no limit on the number of items you can purchase tax-free as long as each item qualifies.


To view a full list of items that are included in the sales tax holiday, along with guidelines and frequently asked questions for both consumers or retailers, please click here (http://www.tax.virginia.gov/site.cfm?alias=STHoliday).


The sales tax holiday is available to everyone- not just those preparing for school- and all Virginia retailers who sell the exempt products must participate.  During the sales tax holiday, retailers may also choose to save taxpayers even more by opting to pay the sales tax themselves on items that are not exempt under the guidelines.   

Young Women's Leadership Program Visits Capitol Hill and George Mason University
It was a privilege to join participants in my Young Women's Leadership Program for their visit to Capitol Hill on Monday, July 28th to meet Congressman Frank Wolf and several members of his staff.  They also had the opportunity to visit Dr. Alessandra Luchini in her research lab at George Mason University on Wednesday, July 30th.  Dr. Luchini was recently named one of the "Brilliant 10 Scientsts" under the age of 40 by Popular Science magazine for her work on applied proteomics, nanoparticles, early cancer detection and a more reliable test for patients who may have Lyme Disease.   
The Future of I-66                     


My staff participated in a joint VDOT/VDRPT Briefing on next steps currently being considered to reduce congestion along I-66 between the Beltway and Haymarket.  Virginia's Secretary of Transportation, Aubrey Layne, other transportation officials, state and local elected officials and members of the news media were also in attendance.  The Secretary made the point that congestion reduction on I-66 is a top statewide priority for the Governor and VDOT. Congestion relief is a top priority for all of us in Northern Virginia. 


VDOT has been reviewing a number of options to improve I-66 due to steady population growth in the area, safety concerns, and increased congestion and mobility demands.  Only I-66 outside the Beltway is being considered at this time because for years Arlington has held up progress on this corridor.   


The tentative VDOT plan is to add an HOV lane in each direction on I-66 between the Beltway and Haymarket, and toll both HOV lanes in a manner similar to the toll lanes on I-495. When completed, HOV-3 vehicles and additional bus service would use the HOV-3 lanes for free. 

Vehicles with one or two passengers could use the HOV lanes and pay a toll. Three general purpose lanes would remain available in each direction as a free option to commuters. The plan would be paid with tax dollars as well as private investment, through a Public Private Partnership or "P3." The private investment would be paid back over time with the toll dollars.


Improvement Concepts under consideration include:

- General Purpose Lanes

- Managed Lanes (such as the 495 Express Lanes)

- Metrorail Extension

- Safety Improvements

- Transportation Communication and Technology


At the meeting, transportation officials stressed that they hope to actively engage the community and ask for input through public comment periods beginning in the fall.  No final decisions have been made at this time. They hope to have the approval of a plan by the Commonwealth Transportation Board in the Spring of 2015, with construction starting in 2017. 


More information is available at www.helpfix66.com. A copy of the VDOT presentation from this morning's meeting may be found here: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/NorthernVirginia/I-66/I-66_Kick-Off.pdf.


Loudoun County Sheriff's Office Update

I wanted to update you on a quarterly meeting that was recently held at the Eastern Loudoun Station by Sheriff Chapman and Captain Gabrielli. The Eastern Loudoun Station serves over 80,000 residents. They reported that major crimes (burglary, robbery, etc) during April-June were up 24 percent over January-March; other lesser crimes were down 1 percent over the same period.
They have an online reporting system that is helps save time and money and can be used to report crimes such as identity theft, destruction of property, lost property, etc. You can get more information here. They urged residents to lock their cars at night because they receive numerous reports of stolen items which are taken from unlocked cars. They also reported there are several telephone scams (see below) and resident's are urged to beware of fraudulent phone calls. To view the presentation, click here.


Georgetown Pike Paving Project Begins August 10th


I wanted to share with you the latest press release from the Virginia Department of Transportation regarding the Georgetown Pike paving project.  The project will start at I-495 and work towards Springvale Road. 


RELEASE: Immediate July 30, 2014 
CONTACT: Joan Morris, 703-259-1799571-238-5030[email protected]

GREAT FALLS - The Virginia Department of Transportation will begin repaving eight miles of Georgetown Pike (Route 193) from I-495 to Springvale Road beginning Sunday, August 10, 2014(weather permitting). The work will be performed at night from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday throughThursday and 9 p.m. Friday to 9 a.m. Saturday. This work is expected to take about two months to complete, weather permitting.

Drivers are asked to consider taking alternate routes during the repaving operation on Route 193. The road will be milled to a depth of four inches and replaced with 2.5 inches of intermediate asphalt and 1.5 inches of surface asphalt.  Some areas of the existing pavement will require deeper patching prior to the asphalt overlay.





I try to be accessible to my constituents in as many ways as possible. For more information, please visit my website, www.delegatecomstock.com, where you can read my blog for up-to-date information on Virginia, or follow me on Facebook or Twitter. You can reach me by email at[email protected] or by phone at 703-772-7168. Please don't hesitate to contact me about issues that concern you.




Delegate Barbara Comstock

Paid for by Friends of Barbara Comstock.