Loudoun's Board of Supervisors voted Wednesday to spend nearly $100,000 in county funds to fight the owners of the "Champagne Highway," otherwise known as the Dulles Greenway.
Coming out of a closed-door executive session, supervisors voted 8-1 to spend $95,000 on outside counsel to appeal a September ruling from the State Corporation Commission that essentially defended the Greenway and its rate structure. In that judgement, an SCC examiner said the roadway's tolls are reasonable when weighed against the benefit it provides users.
Following the most recent annual rate increase, Greenway drivers pay upwards of $6 during a peak, one-way trip on the 14-mile thoroughfare.
Loudoun County's appeal is "by-right," meaning the Virginia Supreme Court is obligated to hear the case, according to Supervisor Matt Letourneau (R-Dulles).
"We have been told that it will be an uphill battle, but it's still a battle worth having," Letourneau said. "And it's a battle that you want to be well-armed for."
Supervisor Ken Reid (R-Leesburg) cast the lone dissenting vote. Reid said he doesn't "think this is going to go anywhere."
"I'm sorry that distance pricing didn't work," Reid said. "But to go this route and to spend this kind of money is a crap shoot " I don't like the toll structure " but I'm not going to beat [the Greenway owners] up. I'm just not."
The Greenway is privately owned by Toll Road Investors Partnership (TRIP) II.
It's unclear when the state Supreme Court will hear the appeal.