MWAA and WMATA are organizations that do not represent the interests of Northern Virginia. They are run by union interests; 80% of metro employees are union members from Maryland and DC. The boards of these organizations force Fairfax, and the other NVA municipalities to pay more than their fair share for rail service, but these municipalities do not have much of a voice in the decision making processes. Governor McDonnell, in an interview on WMAL, lamented this fact. WMATA and MWAA cater to their DC and Maryland Unions, not to the tax payers of Northern Virginia. This is the political landscape that York is rushing us into. Why?
Currently Loudoun is on the hook for 4.8% of the $6.0B that is the price tag for Silver Line construction. The construction bonds could be in MWAA’s name. MWAA due to its poor historic handling of its finances, has a BBB credit rating. This means that they cannot secure 4% loans; the best they can get is 6%. The life time cost for servicing what would be Loudoun’s $285,000,000.00 share of these bonds is around $605,000,000.00. Lets now consider the Capital Improvement Costs that are in the neighborhood of $13.5B, what if Loudoun were saddled with 4.8% of that mountain of debt? Then add in a yearly operating budget of of around $13M. The operating budget is based on WMATA’s estimate — this organization has a poor record when it comes to all matters fiscal — the real operating budget likely will be far higher. Think about what this will do to our taxes. Now remember that MWAA and WMATA get to pump all this tax money into their general fund before it is put towards its intended use. Think about that.
This is a bad deal for Loudoun. Mr. York should know better, but he apparently does not. We are being set up to pay millions per year in order to restore the badly mismanaged MWAA budget. Even the original loans for metro, still have not been fully retired. We are seen as a cash cow by DC and MD Unions; a cash cow that is to be milked for all it is worth. All this just to get 2.6 miles of rail into one corner of the county. York claims this is needed to reduce traffic congestion, when the studies show it will do no such thing. The plan makes no sense Chairman York, why are you pushing us into this?