Code of Virginia

Code of Virginia
Title 33.2. Highways and Other Surface Transportation Systems
10/21/2019

Subtitle II. Modes of Transportation: Highways, Bridges, Ferries, Rail, and Public Transportation.

Chapter 3. Highway Systems.

Article 1. Interstate System.

§ 33.2-300. Power and authority of Commonwealth Transportation Board relating to the Interstate System, generally.

The Board may plan, designate, acquire, open, construct, reconstruct, improve, maintain, discontinue, abandon, and regulate the use of the Interstate System in the same manner in which it is now or may be authorized to plan, designate, acquire, open, construct, reconstruct, improve, maintain, discontinue, abandon, and regulate the use of the primary state highway system. The Board may vacate, close, or change the location of any highway or street in the manner in which it is now authorized by law to vacate, close, or change the location of a highway in the primary state highway system. The Board has any and all other authority and power relative to the Interstate System as is vested in it relative to highways in the primary state highway system, including the right to acquire by purchase, eminent domain, grant, or dedication title to lands or rights-of-way for such interstate highways whether within or without the limits of any city or town, and in addition thereto has such other power, control, and jurisdiction necessary to comply with the provisions of the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 and all acts amendatory or supplementary thereto, all other provisions of law to the contrary notwithstanding.

Code 1950, § 33-36.2; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-49; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-301. Contracts for maintenance of components of Interstate System.

All maintenance on components of the Interstate System, excluding frontage roads, shall be carried out under contracts awarded by the Commissioner of Highways or the Board pursuant to §§ 33.2-209, 33.2-214, and 33.2-221, except for instances where good and sufficient reasons for not doing so have been shown in advance in writing by the Commissioner of Highways to the Board and to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Transportation, the House Committee on Appropriations, the House Committee on Finance, the Senate Committee on Transportation, and the Senate Committee on Finance. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the Department from performing emergency work at any time on the Interstate System with its own employees or agents or to assume the maintenance responsibilities of a contractor who has been determined to be in default or as a result of a contract termination.

2006, c. 782, § 33.1-49.1; 2012, cc. 729, 733; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-302. Funds for establishment and maintenance of Interstate System, generally.

The highways embraced within the Interstate System shall be established, constructed, and maintained by the Commonwealth under the direction and supervision of the Commissioner of Highways with state funds as may be appropriated and made available for such purposes, together with such appropriations as may be made by any locality in the Commonwealth and funds as are now available or that may be derived from the federal government for such purposes. State funds for repayment of federal construction advances may be raised by toll facilities, if approved by the Federal Highway Administration.

Code 1950, § 33-36.3; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-50; 1982, c. 261; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-303. Portions of Interstate System within cities and towns.

Whenever any portion of the Interstate System that is to be constructed within cities or towns is to occupy existing streets, the right-of-way in the street shall be occupied by the Interstate System free of cost to the Commonwealth.

When the Interstate System extending into or through cities or towns has been constructed to the required standards, streets or highways occupied thereby shall cease to be maintained and controlled by the governing bodies of such cities or towns, and such cities and towns shall thereafter be relieved from all civil liability arising from the physical condition of such streets or highways. Such streets and highways shall not be considered as mileage for which the Board is required to make payment to such cities or towns by any other provision of law.

Nothing contained in this article shall relieve the cities or towns through which any portion of the Interstate System is projected from the responsibility for the preservation of public peace, prevention of crime, apprehension of criminals, protection of the rights of persons and property, and enforcement of the laws of the Commonwealth, and the regulations enacted pursuant thereto, nor shall anything contained herein be considered as a waiver by the Commonwealth of its immunity from liability for tort.

Code 1950, § 33-36.5; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-51; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-304. Transfer of highways, bridges, and streets from the secondary and primary state highway systems to Interstate System.

The Board may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper from the primary or secondary state highway system to the Interstate System. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the Interstate System and thereafter cease being parts of the primary or secondary state highway system. The Board may add such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper to the Interstate System without limitations as to mileage.

Code 1950, § 33-36.6; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-52; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-305. Transfer of highways, bridges, and streets from Interstate System to primary or secondary state highway system.

The Board may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper from the Interstate System to the primary or secondary state highway system without limitations as to mileage. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the primary or secondary state highway system and thereafter cease being parts of the Interstate System.

Code 1950, § 33-36.7; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-53; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-306. Applicability of §§ 33.2-300 through 33.2-305 to toll projects.

The provisions of §§ 33.2-300 through 33.2-305 shall not become effective with respect to those segments of the Interstate System constructed and financed as toll projects until the revenue bonds and the interest thereon issued on account of such toll projects have been paid or a sufficient amount for the payment of all such bonds and the interest to maturity thereon has been set aside in trust for the benefit of the respective bondholders. When the bonds and interest thereon, outstanding on account of such projects, have been paid or a sufficient amount for the payment of such bonds and the interest thereon to the maturity thereof has been so set aside in trust, and when the Board has by formal action, recorded in its minutes, determined the existence of such fact, then the provisions of §§ 33.2-300 through 33.2-308 shall fully apply to such projects.

Code 1950, § 33-36.8; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-54; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-307. Relocation or removal of utility facilities within projects on Interstate System.

A. For the purposes of this section:

"Cost of highway construction" includes the cost of relocating or removing utility facilities in connection with any project on the Interstate System within cities or towns.

"Cost of relocation or removal" includes the entire amount paid by such utility properly attributable to such relocation or removal after deducting any increase in the value of the new facility and any salvage value derived from the old facility.

"Facility of a utility" includes tracks, pipes, mains, conduits, cables, wires, towers, and other structures, equipment, and appliances.

"Utility" includes publicly, privately, and cooperatively owned utilities.

B. Whenever the Board determines that it is necessary that any facility of a utility in, on, under, over, or along existing streets that are to be included within any project on the Interstate System within cities or towns should be relocated or removed, the owner or operator of such facility shall relocate or remove the same in accordance with the order of the Board. The cost of such relocation or removal, including the cost of installing such facility in a new location, and the cost of any lands, or any rights or interest in lands, and any other rights required to accomplish such relocation or removal shall be ascertained and paid by the Board as a part of the cost of the project.

Code 1950, § 33-36.9; 1958, c. 589; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-55; 1972, c. 79; 1983, c. 162; 2003, c. 302; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-308. Additional provisions on relocation or removal of utility facilities within projects on Interstate System.

A. For the purposes of this section:

"Cost of highway construction" includes the cost of relocating or removing utility facilities in connection with any project on the Interstate System or primary state highway system within counties.

"Cost of relocation or removal" includes the entire amount paid by such utility properly attributable to such relocation or removal after deducting therefrom any increase in the value of the new facility and any salvage value derived from the old facility.

"Facility of a utility" includes pipes, mains, storm sewers, water lines, sanitary sewers, natural gas facilities, or other structures, equipment, and appliances.

B. Whenever the Board determines that it is necessary to relocate or remove any facility of a utility owned by (i) a county, (ii) a political subdivision of the Commonwealth or county, or (iii) a nonprofit, consumer-owned company, located in a county having a population of at least 32,000 but no more than 34,000, that (a) is exempt from income taxation under § 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, (b) is organized to provide suitable drinking water, (c) has no assistance from investors, (d) does not pay dividends, and (e) does not sell stock to the general public, or storm sewers, water lines, natural gas facilities, or sanitary sewers owned by a city and extending into any county in, on, under, over, or along existing highways that are to be included within any project on the Interstate System or the primary state highway system within any county, the county or political subdivision of the Commonwealth or county, consumer-owned company, or city shall relocate or remove the same in accordance with the order of the Board. The cost of such relocation or removal including the cost of installing such facility in a new location, and the cost of any lands, or any rights or interest in lands, and any other rights required to accomplish such relocation or removal shall be ascertained and paid by the Board as a part of the cost of the project.

Code 1950, § 33-36.10; 1964, c. 353; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-56; 1989, c. 46; 1998, c. 219; 1999, c. 942; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-309. Tolls for use of Interstate System components.

A. Subject to the limitations provided in § 33.2-119 and in accordance with all applicable federal and state statutes and requirements, the Board may impose and collect tolls from all classes of vehicles in amounts established by the Board for the use of any component of the Interstate System within the Commonwealth.

B. The toll facilities authorized by this section shall be subject to the provisions of federal law for the purpose of tolling motor vehicles to finance interstate construction and reconstruction, promote efficiency in the use of highways, reduce traffic congestion, and improve air quality and for such other purposes as may be permitted by federal law.

C. In order to mitigate traffic congestion in the vicinity of the toll facilities, no toll facility shall be operated without high-speed automated toll collection technology designed to allow motorists to travel through the toll facilities without stopping to make payments. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit a toll facility from retaining means of nonautomated toll collection in some lanes of the facility. The Board shall also consider traffic congestion and mitigation thereof and the impact on local traffic movement as factors in determining the location of the toll facilities authorized pursuant to this section.

D. The revenues collected from each toll facility established pursuant to this section shall be deposited into segregated subaccounts in the Transportation Trust Fund and may be allocated by the Board as the Board deems appropriate to:

1. Pay or finance all or part of the costs of programs or projects, including the costs of planning, operation, maintenance, and improvements incurred in connection with the toll facility, provided that such allocations shall be limited to programs and projects that are reasonably related to or benefit the users of the toll facility. The priorities of metropolitan planning organizations, planning district commissions, local governments, and transportation corridors shall be considered by the Board in making project allocations from such revenues deposited into the Transportation Trust Fund.

2. Repay funds from the Toll Facilities Revolving Account or the Transportation Partnership Opportunity Fund.

3. Pay the Board's reasonable costs and expenses incurred in the administration and management of the toll facility.

2007, c. 477, § 33.1-23.03 :10; 2008, cc. 602, 838; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 681; 2016, c. 780; 2017, c. 836.

Article 2. Primary State Highway System.

§ 33.2-310. Primary state highway system.

The primary state highway system shall be constructed and maintained by the Commonwealth under the direction and supervision of the Board and the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-23; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-25; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-311. Certain highways in parks included in primary state highway system.

All highways in state parks that provide connections between highways, in either the primary or secondary state highway system, outside such parks and recreation centers within such parks shall continue to be portions of the primary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-24; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-31; 1986, c. 498; 1989, c. 656; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-312. Maintenance of highways, bridges, and toll facilities within state parks.

The Commissioner of Highways may maintain all highways, bridges, and toll facilities within the boundaries of any state park established by and under the control of the Department of Conservation and Recreation. For the purpose of maintaining the highways in any such park, the Commissioner of Highways may expend funds under his control and available for expenditure upon the maintenance of highways in the secondary state highway system in the county or counties in which such state park is located. This section shall not affect the jurisdiction, control, and right to establish such highways, bridges, and toll facilities that are now vested in the Department of Conservation and Recreation.

All roads, bridges, and toll facilities constructed by way of revenue bonds issued by the Department of Conservation and Recreation shall operate under the terms of their establishment as a park facility, notwithstanding the right of the Commissioner of Highways to use highway funds to maintain them.

Code 1950, § 33-25; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-32; 1986, c. 498; 1989, c. 656; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-313. Maintenance of highways at state institutions.

The Commissioner of Highways may, when requested by the governing body of a state institution, assume the maintenance of any highway within the grounds of such state institution that has been established and constructed by such institution to standards acceptable to the Commissioner of Highways. Any such highways accepted for maintenance by the Commissioner of Highways under the provisions of this section shall be a part of the primary state highway system, but the state institution shall continue to exercise police power over such highways.

1970, c. 322, § 33.1-33; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-314. Transfer of highways, bridges, and streets from secondary to primary state highway system; additions to primary state highway system.

A. The Board may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper from the secondary state highway system to the primary state highway system. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the primary state highway system. The Board may add such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper to the primary state highway system. The total mileage of such highways, bridges, and streets so transferred or added by the Board shall not exceed 50 miles during any one year.

B. When the Chief Engineer of the Department recommends that it is appropriate in connection with the completion of a construction or maintenance project to transfer highways, bridges, and streets from the secondary state highway system to the primary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as he deems proper. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the primary state highway system and cease being parts of the secondary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-26; 1952, c. 17; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-34; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-315. Transfer of highways, bridges, and streets from primary to secondary state highway system.

A. The Board may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as it deems proper from the primary state highway system to the secondary state highway system or, if requested by the local governing body, to the local system of roads operated by a locality receiving payments pursuant to § 33.2-319 or 33.2-366. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the secondary state highway system or the local system of roads operated by a locality receiving payments pursuant to § 33.2-319 or 33.2-366. The total mileage of such highways, bridges, and streets so transferred by the Board shall not exceed 150 miles during any one year.

B. When the Chief Engineer of the Department recommends that it is appropriate in connection with the completion of a construction or maintenance project to transfer highways, bridges, and streets from the primary state highway system to the secondary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways may transfer such highways, bridges, and streets as he deems proper. Upon such transfer, the highways, bridges, and streets so transferred shall become for all purposes parts of the secondary state highway system and cease being parts of the primary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-27; 1956, c. 39; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-35; 2009, c. 476; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-316. Primary state highway system map.

The Commissioner of Highways shall prepare and keep on file in his office for public inspection a complete map showing the routes of the primary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-30; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-36; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-317. Establishment, construction, and maintenance exclusively by Commonwealth; funds.

The highways embraced within the primary state highway system shall be established, constructed, and maintained exclusively by the Commonwealth under the direction and supervision of the Commissioner of Highways, with such state funds as may be appropriated and made available for such purposes, together with such appropriations as may be made by any county, district, city, or town in the Commonwealth and such funds as are available or derived from the federal government for highway building and improvement in the Commonwealth.

Code 1950, § 33-31; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-37; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-318. Bypasses through or around cities and towns.

A. The Commissioner of Highways may acquire by gift, purchase, exchange, condemnation, or otherwise such lands or interest therein necessary or proper for the purpose and may construct and improve thereon such bypasses or extensions and connections of the primary state highway system through or around cities and towns as the Board deems necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system, provided that the respective cities and towns with populations of 3,500 or more by action of their governing bodies agree to participate in all costs of such construction and improvement, including the cost of rights-of-way, on that portion of any such bypass or extension that is located within any such city or town. The maintenance of that portion of a bypass or extension located within a city or town shall be borne by the city or town. However, the Board shall contribute to such maintenance in accordance with the provisions of law governing its contribution to the maintenance of highways, bridges, and streets in such cities and towns. The location, form, and character of informational, regulatory, and warning signs, curb and pavement, or other markings and traffic signals installed or placed by any public authority shall be subject to the approval of the Commissioner of Highways. At both ends of bypasses through or around cities and towns, the Commissioner of Highways shall erect and maintain adequate directional signs of sufficient size and suitable design to indicate clearly the main route leading directly into such cities and towns.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, in any case in which a municipality refuses to contribute to the construction of a bypass or an extension or connection of the primary state highway system within said municipality, the Commissioner of Highways may construct such bypass or extension and connection without any contribution by the municipality when the Board determines that such bypass or extension and connection is primarily rural in character and that the most desirable and economical location is within the municipality. Any bypass or extension and connection built under this subsection shall be maintained by the Commissioner of Highways as a part of the primary state highway system, and the municipality shall receive no payment for such bypass or extension and connection under § 33.2-319.

C. All the provisions of general law relating to the exercise of eminent domain by the Commissioner of Highways are applicable to such bypasses, extensions, and connections of the primary state highway system.

D. The Board may expend out of funds appropriated to the Board and allocated to an applicable project under § 33.2-358, 33.2-370, or 33.2-371 such funds as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.

Code 1950, § 33-35; 1964, c. 258; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-39; 1977, c. 578; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-319. Payments to cities and certain towns for maintenance of certain highways.

A. The Commissioner of Highways, subject to the approval of the Board, shall make payments for maintenance, construction, or reconstruction of highways to all cities and towns eligible for funds under this section. Such payments, however, shall only be made if those highways functionally classified as principal and minor arterial roads are maintained to a standard satisfactory to the Department. Whenever any city or town qualifies under this section for allocation of funds, such qualification shall continue to apply to such city or town regardless of any subsequent change in population and shall cease to apply only when so specifically provided by an act of the General Assembly.

Funds are allocated to urban highways in (i) all towns that have a population of more than 3,500 according to the last preceding United States census; (ii) all towns that, according to evidence satisfactory to the Board, have attained a population of more than 3,500 since the last preceding United States census; (iii) Chase City, Elkton, Grottoes, Narrows, Pearisburg, and Saltville, which, on June 30, 1985, maintained certain streets under former § 33.1-80 as then in effect; (iv) all cities regardless of their populations; and (v) the Towns of Altavista, Lebanon, and Wise.

B. No payments shall be made to any such city or town unless the portion of the highway for which such payment is made either (i) has (a) an unrestricted right-of-way at least 50 feet wide and (b) a hard-surface width of at least 30 feet; (ii) has (a) an unrestricted right-of-way at least 80 feet wide, (b) a hard-surface width of at least 24 feet, and (c) approved engineering plans for the ultimate construction of an additional hard-surface width of at least 24 feet within the same right-of-way; (iii)(a) is a cul-de-sac, (b) has an unrestricted right-of-way at least 40 feet wide, and (c) has a turnaround that meets applicable standards set by the Department; (iv) either (a) has been paved and has constituted part of the primary or secondary state highway system prior to annexation or incorporation or (b) has constituted part of the secondary state highway system prior to annexation or incorporation and is paved to a minimum width of 16 feet subsequent to such annexation or incorporation and with the further exception of streets or portions thereof that have previously been maintained under the provisions of § 33.2-339 or 33.2-340; (v) was eligible for and receiving such payments under the laws of the Commonwealth in effect on June 30, 1985; (vi) is a street established prior to July 1, 1950, that has an unrestricted right-of-way width of not less than 30 feet and a hard-surface width of not less than 16 feet; (vii) is a street functionally classified as a local street that was constructed on or after January 1, 1996, and that at the time of approval by the city or town met the criteria for pavement width and right-of-way of the then-current design standards for subdivision streets as set forth in regulations adopted by the Board; (viii) is a street previously eligible to receive street payments that is located in the City of Norfolk or the City of Richmond and is closed to public travel, pursuant to legislation enacted by the governing body of the locality in which it is located, for public safety reasons, within the boundaries of a publicly funded housing development owned and operated by the local housing authority; or (ix) is a local street, otherwise eligible, containing one or more physical protuberances placed within the right-of-way for the purpose of controlling the speed of traffic.

However, the Commissioner of Highways may waive the requirements as to hard-surface pavement or right-of-way width for highways where the width modification is at the request of the governing body of the locality and is to protect the quality of the affected locality's drinking water supply or, for highways constructed on or after July 1, 1994, to accommodate some other special circumstance where such action would not compromise the health, safety, or welfare of the public. The modification is subject to such conditions as the Commissioner of Highways may prescribe.

C. For the purpose of calculating allocations and making payments under this section, the Department shall divide affected highways into two categories, which shall be distinct from but based on functional classifications established by the Federal Highway Administration: (i) principal and minor arterial roads and (ii) collector roads and local streets. Payments made to affected localities shall be based on the number of moving-lane-miles of highways or portions thereof available to peak-hour traffic in that locality.

D. Any city converting an existing moving-lane that qualifies for payments under this section to a transit-only lane after July 1, 2014, shall remain eligible for such payments but shall not receive additional funds as a result of such conversion. Any city or town converting an existing moving-lane that qualifies for payments under this section to a bicycle-only lane after July 1, 2014, shall remain eligible for such payments, provided that (i) the number of moving-lane-miles converted is not more than 50 moving-lane-miles or three percent of the city's or town's total number of moving-lane-miles on July 1, 2014, whichever is less, and (ii) prior to any such conversion, the city or town certifies that the conversion design has been assessed by a professional engineer licensed in the Commonwealth pursuant to Chapter 4 (§ 54.1-400 et seq.) of Title 54.1 and that the assessment has demonstrated that (a) the level of service of the street to be converted will not be reduced or if it will be reduced that the associated roadway network will retain adequate capacity to meet current and future mobility needs of all users and (b) the conversion has been designed in accordance with the National Association of City Transportation Officials' Urban Bikeway Design Guide. Any such city or town shall not receive additional funds as a result of such conversion to a bicycle-only lane and shall annually expend funds on road and street maintenance and operations that are at least equal to funds spent on road and street maintenance and operations in the year prior to such conversion. For purposes of this subsection, "level of service" has the meaning provided in the Transportation Research Board's Highway Capacity Manual.

E. The Department shall recommend to the Board an annual rate per category to be computed using the base rate of growth planned for the Department's Highway Maintenance and Operations program. The Board shall establish the annual rates of such payments as part of its allocation for such purpose, and the Department shall use those rates to calculate and put into effect annual changes in each qualifying city's or town's payment under this section.

The payments by the Department shall be paid in equal sums in each quarter of the fiscal year, and payments shall not exceed the allocation of the Board.

F. The chief administrative officer of the city or town receiving these funds shall make annual categorical reports of expenditures to the Department, in such form as the Board shall prescribe, accounting for all expenditures, certifying that none of the money received has been expended for other than maintenance, construction, or reconstruction of the streets, and reporting on their performance as specified in subsection B of § 33.2-352. Such reports shall be included in the scope of the annual audit of each municipality conducted by independent certified public accountants.

1985, c. 42, § 33.1-41.1; 1991, c. 353; 1992, c. 267; 1994, c. 459; 1996, cc. 149, 821; 1997, c. 49; 1998, c. 441; 2000, c. 97; 2002, c. 673; 2004, c. 118; 2007, c. 813; 2011, cc. 434, 493; 2014, c. 805; 2015, cc. 684, 722; 2017, c. 534.

§ 33.2-320. Incorporation into primary state highway system of connecting streets and highways in certain other cities and towns.

The Board may, by and with the consent of the Governor and the governing body of any city or town having a population of 3,500 or less, incorporate in the primary state highway system such streets and highways or portions thereof in such city or town as may in its judgment be best for the handling of traffic through such city or town from or to any highway in the primary state highway system and may eliminate any of such streets or highways or portions thereof from the primary state highway system. Every such action of the Board incorporating any such street or highway or portion thereof in the primary state highway system or eliminating it therefrom shall be recorded in its minutes.

Any such street or highway or portion thereof in any such city or town so incorporated in the primary state highway system shall be subject to the rules, regulations, and control of the state highway authorities as are other highways in the primary state highway system. But such city or town shall be obligated to pay the maintenance, construction, and reconstruction costs of such streets or highways or portions thereof so incorporated in the primary state highway system in excess of the amounts authorized to be spent by the Commissioner of Highways on such streets or highways.

Every provision in the charter of any such city or town insofar as it is in conflict with this section is hereby repealed.

The Commissioner of Highways may permit such city or town to maintain any such street or highway or portion thereof incorporated in the primary state highway system and may reimburse such city or town up to such amount as he is authorized to expend on the maintenance of such street or highway or portion thereof.

Code 1950, § 33-35.3; 1964, c. 256; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-42; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-321. Agreements between Commonwealth Transportation Board and certain counties for operation of certain devices on state highways.

The Commissioner of Highways is empowered to enter into agreements with the governing bodies of counties that have withdrawn or elect to withdraw from the secondary state highway system pursuant to § 11 of Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932, upon such terms as may be agreeable between the parties, in order to authorize such counties to install, maintain, and control traffic signals, parking meters, lane-use control signals, and other traffic control devices at specific locations on the primary or secondary state highway system within such counties. Such counties and the Commissioner of Highways shall have the authority to do all things reasonable or convenient to effectuate the purposes of this section.

1977, c. 175, § 33.1-46.3; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-322. Counties may perform certain maintenance.

Any county may enter into an agreement with the Department to permit the county to landscape and maintain any or all medians and other nontraveled portions of primary highways located in the county.

1980, c. 147, § 33.1-46.4; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-323. Approval of markings and traffic lights erected by towns.

Notwithstanding any provision of law contrary to this section, all markings and traffic lights installed or erected by towns on the primary highways maintained by the Department shall first be approved by the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-36; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-47; 2014, c. 805.

Article 3. Secondary State Highway System.

§ 33.2-324. Secondary state highway system; composition.

The secondary state highway system shall consist of all of the public highways, causeways, bridges, landings, and wharves in the counties of the Commonwealth not included in the primary state highway system. The secondary state highway system shall include such highways and community roads leading to and from public school buildings, streets, causeways, bridges, landings, and wharves in towns having a population of 3,500 or less according to the United States census of 1920, and in all towns having such a population incorporated since 1920, that constitute connecting links between highways in the secondary state highway system in the counties and between highways in the secondary state highway system and highways in the primary state highway system, not to exceed two miles in any one town. If in any such town that is partly surrounded by water less than two miles of the highways and streets therein constitute parts of the secondary state highway system, the Board shall, upon the adoption of a resolution by the governing body of such town designating for inclusion in the secondary state highway system certain highways and streets in such town not to exceed a distance of two miles, less the length of such highways and streets in such town that constitute parts of the secondary state highway system, accept and place in the secondary state highway system such additional highways and streets.

Code 1950, § 33-44; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-67; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-325. Certain school roads in secondary state highway system.

All roads leading from the state highways, either primary or secondary, to public schools in the counties of the Commonwealth to which school buses are operated shall continue to constitute portions of the secondary state highway system insofar as these roads lead to or are on school property and as such shall be improved and maintained.

Code 1950, § 33-45; 1952, c. 505; 1964, c. 380; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-68; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-326. Control, supervision, and management of secondary state highway system components.

A. The control, supervision, management, and jurisdiction over the secondary state highway system shall be vested in the Department, and the maintenance and improvement, including construction and reconstruction, of such secondary state highway system shall be by the Commonwealth under the supervision of the Commissioner of Highways. The boards of supervisors or other governing bodies of the counties shall have no control, supervision, management, or jurisdiction over such public highways, causeways, bridges, landings, and wharves constituting the secondary state highway system. Except as otherwise provided in this article, the Board shall be vested with the same powers, control, and jurisdiction over the secondary state highway system in the counties and towns of the Commonwealth, and such additions as may be made, as were vested in the boards of supervisors or other governing bodies of the counties on June 21, 1932, and in addition thereto shall be vested with the same power, authority, and control as to the secondary state highway system as is vested in the Board in connection with the primary state highway system.

B. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as requiring the Department, when undertaking improvements to any secondary state highway system component or any portion of any such component, to fully reconstruct such component or portion thereof to bring it into compliance with all design and engineering standards that would be applicable to such component or portion thereof if the project involved new construction.

Code 1950, § 33-46; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-69; 2008, Sp. Sess. II, c. 3; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-327. Design standards for secondary state highway system components.

For urban and urban development areas in localities using the urban county executive form of government, the Department shall work in conjunction with the locality and the Department of Rail and Public Transportation to review new design standards for secondary state highway system components that the locality proposes. Such standards shall (i) be based on the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets and other publications applicable to urban areas; (ii) set forth a design methodology that should be used in the affected urban and urban development areas; (iii) allow for the efficient movement of transit and other vehicles through these areas; (iv) accommodate safe pedestrian and bicyclist movement; (v) accommodate high density urban development; (vi) encourage user-friendly access to transit; (vii) include stormwater management guidelines, consistent with state and local laws and regulations; and (viii) respect the character of urban areas. These design standards and methodologies are intended to facilitate approval of roadway and transportation system improvement plans in urban areas that comply with the standards. These design standards shall not contradict or be in conflict with the principles outlined in the applicable Board regulations concerning terms and conditions under which subdivision streets may be accepted into the secondary state highway system.

Standards developed by parties as required by this section shall be submitted to the Department for final review and approval at least three months prior to the locality's anticipated implementation date.

2010, c. 498, § 33.1-69.001; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-328. Department of Transportation to install and maintain certain signs.

Whenever so requested by the governing body of a county, the Department shall install a system of highway name signs on state-maintained highways at such time and upon such terms and conditions as may be mutually agreed to between the county and the Commissioner of Highways.

The Department shall install, using state forces or contract, the initial signing system, and the county shall be responsible for continuing maintenance of the signs. Supply of the signs by the Department, either by manufacture or purchase, and initial installation shall be paid for from funds available to the Department for highway maintenance.

No highway funds shall be used by the county for the cost of maintaining the signing system.

1993, c. 340, § 33.1-69.01; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-329. Transfer of control, etc., of landings, docks, and wharves to Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Board may transfer the control, possession, supervision, management, and jurisdiction of landings, wharves, and docks in the secondary state highway system to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, at the request or with the concurrence of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. Such transfer may be by lease, agreement, or otherwise, approved by resolution of the Board, and signed by the Commissioner of Highways or his designee, for such period and upon such terms and conditions as the Board may direct.

B. All such transfers effected prior to July 1, 1980, by lease, agreement, or otherwise, from the Department to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and all regulations of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries controlling the use of such facilities shall be and are hereby declared valid in every respect.

1980, c. 301, § 33.1-69.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-330. Relocation or removal of utility facilities within secondary state highway system construction projects.

A. As used in this section:

"Cost of highway construction" includes the cost of relocating or removing utility facilities in connection with any project on the secondary state highway system.

"Cost of relocation or removal" includes the entire amount paid by such utility properly attributable to such relocation or removal after deducting therefrom any increase in the value of the new facility and any salvage value derived from the old facility.

"Facility of a utility" includes tracks, pipes, mains, conduits, cables, wires, towers, and other structures, equipment, and appliances.

"Utility" includes utilities owned by a county, city, town, or public authority, and nonprofit, consumer-owned company located in a county having a population of at least 30,000 but no more than 34,000 that (i) is exempt from income taxation under § 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, (ii) is organized to provide suitable drinking water, (iii) has no assistance from investors, (iv) does not pay dividends, and (v) does not sell stock to the general public.

B. Whenever it is necessary that the facility of a utility in, on, under, over, or along an existing highway that is to be included within any construction project on the secondary state highway system should be relocated or removed, the owner or operator of such facility shall relocate or remove the same in accordance with the order of the Board. The cost of such relocation or removal, including the cost of installing such facility in a new location, and the cost of any lands, or any rights or interest in lands, and any other rights, required to accomplish such relocation or removal shall be ascertained and paid by the Board as a part of the cost of such project.

1995, cc. 680, 688, § 33.1-69.2; 1999, c. 942; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 168.

§ 33.2-331. Annual meeting with county officers; six-year plan for secondary state highways; certain reimbursements required.

For purposes of this section, "cancellation" means complete elimination of a highway construction or improvement project from the six-year plan.

The governing body of each county in the secondary state highway system may, jointly with the representatives of the Department as designated by the Commissioner of Highways, prepare a six-year plan for the improvements to the secondary state highway system in that county. Each such six-year plan shall be based upon the best estimate of funds to be available to the county for expenditure in the six-year period on the secondary state highway system. Each such plan shall list the proposed improvements, together with an estimated cost of each project so listed. Following the preparation of the plan in any year in which a proposed new funding allocation is greater than $100,000, the board of supervisors or other local governing body shall conduct a public hearing after publishing notice in a newspaper published in or having general circulation in the county once a week for two successive weeks and posting notice of the proposed hearing at the front door of the courthouse of such county 10 days before the meeting. At the public hearings, which shall be conducted jointly by the board of supervisors and the representative of the Department, the entire six-year plan shall be discussed with the citizens of the county and their views considered. Following the discussion, the local governing body, together with the representative of the Department, shall finalize and officially adopt the six-year plan, which shall then be considered the official plan of the county.

At least once in each calendar year in which a proposed new funding allocation is greater than $100,000, representatives of the Department in charge of the secondary state highway system in each county, or some representative of the Department designated by the Commissioner of Highways, shall meet with the governing body of each county in a regular or special meeting of the local governing body for the purpose of preparing a budget for the expenditure of improvement funds for the next fiscal year. The representative of the Department shall furnish the local governing body with an updated estimate of funds, and the board and the representative of the Department shall jointly prepare the list of projects to be carried out in that fiscal year taken from the six-year plan by order of priority and following generally the policies of the Board in regard to the statewide improvements to the secondary state highway system. In any year in which a proposed new funding allocation is greater than $100,000, such list of priorities shall then be presented at a public hearing duly advertised in accordance with the procedure outlined in this section, and comments of citizens shall be obtained and considered. Following this public hearing, the board, with the concurrence of the representative of the Department, shall adopt, as official, a priority program for the ensuing year, and the Department shall include such listed projects in its secondary highways budget for the county for that year.

At least once every two years following the adoption of the original six-year plan, the governing body of each county, together with the representative of the Department, may update the six-year plan of the county by adding to it and extending it as necessary so as to maintain it as a plan encompassing six years. Whenever additional funds for secondary highway purposes become available, the local governing body may request a revision in its six-year plan in order that such plan be amended to provide for the expenditure of the additional funds. Such additions and extensions to each six-year plan shall be prepared in the same manner and following the same procedures as outlined herein for its initial preparation. Where the local governing body and the representative of the Department fail to agree upon a priority program, the local governing body may appeal to the Commissioner of Highways. The Commissioner of Highways shall consider all proposed priorities and render a decision establishing a priority program based upon a consideration by the Commissioner of Highways of the welfare and safety of county citizens. Such decision shall be binding.

Nothing in this section shall preclude a local governing body, with the concurrence of the representative of the Department, from combining the public hearing that may be required pursuant to this section for revision of a six-year plan with the public hearing that may be required pursuant to this section for review of the list of priorities, provided that notice of such combined hearing is published in accordance with procedures provided in this section.

All such six-year plans shall consider all existing highways in the secondary state highway system, including those in the towns located in the county that are maintained as a part of the secondary state highway system, and shall be made a public document.

If any county cancels any highway construction or improvement project included in its six-year plan after the location and design for the project has been approved, such county shall reimburse the Department the net amount of all funds expended by the Department for planning, engineering, right-of-way acquisition, demolition, relocation, and construction between the date on which project development was initiated and the date of cancellation. To the extent that funds from secondary highway allocations have been expended to pay for a highway construction or improvement project, all revenues generated from a reimbursement by the county shall be deposited into that same county's secondary highway allocation. The Commissioner of Highways may waive all or any portion of such reimbursement at his discretion.

The provisions of this section shall not apply in instances where less than 100 percent of the right-of-way is available for donation for unpaved highway improvements.

Code 1950; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-70.01; 1977, c. 578; 1979, c. 64; 1981, c. 240; 1993, c. 802; 2001, cc. 105, 130; 2005, c. 645; 2011, cc. 434, 493; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684; 2019, cc. 81, 400.

§ 33.2-332. Requesting Department of Transportation to hard-surface secondary highways; paving of certain secondary highways within existing rights-of-way; designation as Rural Rustic Road.

A. Whenever the governing body of any county, after consultation with personnel of the Department, adopts a resolution requesting the Department to hard-surface any secondary highway in such county that carries 50 or more vehicles per day with a hard surface of width and strength adequate for such traffic volume, the Department shall give consideration to such resolution in establishing priority in expending the funds allocated to such county. The Department shall consider the paving of highways with a right-of-way width of less than 40 feet under this subsection when land is, has been, or can be acquired by gift for the purpose of constructing a hard-surface highway.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, any unpaved secondary highway that carries at least 50 but no more than 750 vehicles per day may be paved or improved and paved within its existing right-of-way or within a wider right-of-way that is less than 40 feet wide if the following conditions are met:

1. The governing body of the county in which the highway is located has requested paving of such highway as part of the six-year plan for the county under § 33.2-331 and transmitted that request to the Commissioner of Highways; and

2. The Commissioner of Highways, after having considered only (i) the safety of such highway in its current condition and in its paved or improved condition, including the desirability of reduced speed limits and installation of other warning signs or devices; (ii) the views of the residents and owners of property adjacent to or served by such highway; (iii) the views of the local governing body making the request; (iv) the historical and aesthetic significance of such highway and its surroundings; (v) the availability of any additional land that has been or may be acquired by gift or other means for the purpose of paving such highway within its existing right-of-way or within a wider right-of-way that is less than 40 feet wide; and (vi) environmental considerations, shall grant or deny the request for the paving of such highway under this subsection.

C. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections A and B, the governing body of any county, in consultation with the Department, may designate a highway or highway segment as a Rural Rustic Road, provided such highway or highway segment is located in a low-density development area and has an average daily traffic volume of no more than 1,500 vehicles per day. For a highway or highway segment so designated, improvements shall utilize a paved surface width based on reduced and flexible standards that leave trees, vegetation, side slopes, and open drainage abutting the highway undisturbed to the maximum extent possible without compromising public safety. Any highway designated as a Rural Rustic Road shall be subject to § 62.1-44.15:34. The Department, in consultation with the affected local governing body, shall first consider the paving of a highway or highway segment meeting the criteria for a Rural Rustic Road in accordance with this subsection before making a decision to pave it to another standard as set forth in this section.

D. The Commonwealth and its agencies, instrumentalities, departments, officers, and employees acting within the scope of their duties and authority shall be immune for damages by reason of actions taken in conformity with the provisions of this section. Immunity for the local governing body of any political subdivision requesting paving under this section and the officers and employees of any such political subdivision shall be limited to that immunity provided pursuant to § 15.2-1405.

1973, c. 360, § 33.1-70.1; 1977, c. 578; 1985, c. 440; 1997, cc. 715, 729; 1999, cc. 306, 320; 2001, cc. 355, 366; 2002, c. 414; 2003, c. 599; 2006, c. 546; 2008, c. 195; 2011, c. 400; 2013, cc. 756, 793; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-333. Emergency paving of unpaved secondary highways; notice and local concurrence.

In the event of an emergency, an unpaved highway within the secondary state highway system shall be paved only if the following procedures are satisfied:

1. The Commissioner of Highways shall consider the following factors in determining whether the unpaved secondary highway, as the result of an emergency, shall be paved: (i) the safety of the secondary highway in its current condition; (ii) the feasibility of restoring the unpaved highway to its functional level prior to the emergency; (iii) the concerns of the citizens in the locality wherein the affected highway is located, particularly those persons who own land adjacent to such highway; (iv) the concerns of the governing body of the locality affected; and (v) the historical and aesthetic significance of the unpaved secondary highway and its surroundings.

2. The Commissioner of Highways shall provide notice of the intended paving to the governing body of the locality where the affected highway or portion thereof is located. The Commissioner shall provide such notice following his decision to pave the unpaved secondary highway within the locality affected.

3. The local governing body's concurrence or other recommendation regarding the proposed paving shall be forwarded to the Commissioner of Highways within 72 hours following the receipt of the Commissioner's notice.

1996, c. 923, § 33.1-70.2; 2011, c. 400; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-334. Requirements for taking new streets into secondary state highway system.

A. The governing body of any county that has not withdrawn from the secondary state highway system or any town within which the Department maintains the streets may, by resolution, request the Board to take any new street or highway into the secondary state highway system for maintenance if such street or highway has been developed and constructed in accordance with the Board's secondary street acceptance requirements. The Board shall adopt regulations establishing such secondary street acceptance requirements, which shall include such provisions as the Board deems necessary or appropriate to achieve the safe and efficient operation of the Commonwealth's transportation network.

B. In addition to such other provisions deemed necessary or appropriate by the Board, the regulations shall include (i) requirements to ensure the connectivity of highway and pedestrian networks with the existing and future transportation network, (ii) provisions to minimize stormwater runoff and impervious surface area, and (iii) provisions for performance bonding of new secondary highways and associated cost recovery fees.

C. No initial regulation establishing secondary street acceptance requirements pursuant to this section shall apply to subdivision plats and subdivision construction plans that have been submitted and accepted for review by the Department on or before the effective date of such initial regulations. No locality shall be obligated to approve any subdivision plat or subdivision construction plans that are inconsistent with these regulations.

D. Nothing in this section or in any regulation, policy, or practice adopted pursuant to this section shall prevent the acceptance of any street or segment of a street within a network addition that meets one or more of the public service requirements addressed in the regulations, provided that the network addition satisfies all other requirements adopted pursuant to this section. In cases where a majority of the lots along the street or street segment remain undeveloped and construction traffic is expected to utilize that street or street segment after acceptance, the bonding requirement for such street or street segment may be required by the Department to be extended for up to one year beyond that required in the secondary street acceptance requirements.

2007, c. 382, § 33.1-70.3; 2010, c. 401; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-335. Taking certain streets into secondary state highway system.

A. For the purposes of this section:

"County" means a county in which the secondary state highway system is constructed and maintained by the Department and that has adopted a local ordinance for control of the development of subdivision streets to the necessary standards for acceptance into the secondary state highway system.

"Qualifying rural addition cost" means that portion of the estimated engineering and construction cost to improve the street to the minimum standards for acceptance remaining after reducing the total estimated cost by any prorated amount deemed the responsibility of others based on speculative interests.

"Rural addition funds" means those funds reserved from the county's annual allocation of secondary state highway system construction funds, as defined in § 33.2-324, for the purpose of this section. If such funds are not used by such county for such purpose during the fiscal year they are so allocated, the funds may be held for such purpose for the four succeeding fiscal years. A maximum of five percent of the annual secondary state system highway construction allocation may be reserved by the local governing body for rural additions.

"Speculative interest" means that the original developer or a successor developer retains ownership in any lot abutting such street for development or speculative purposes. In instances where it is determined that speculative interest is retained by the original developer, developers, or successor developers and the governing body of the county deems that extenuating circumstances exist, the governing body of the county shall require a pro rata participation by such original developer, developers, or successor developers as prescribed in subsection D as a condition of the county's recommendation pursuant to this section.

"Street" means a street or highway shown on a plat that has been recorded or otherwise opened to public use and used by motor vehicles for at least 20 years and that, for any reason, has not been taken into the secondary state highway system and serves at least three families per mile.

B. Whenever the governing body of a county recommends in writing to the Department that any street in the county be taken into and become a part of the secondary state highway system in such county, the Department thereupon, within the limit of available funds and the mileage available in such county for the inclusion of highways and streets in the secondary state highway system, shall take such street into the secondary state highway system for maintenance, improvement, construction, and reconstruction if such street, at the time of such recommendation, (i) has a minimum dedicated width of 40 feet or (ii) in the event of extenuating circumstances as determined by the Commissioner of Highways, has a minimum dedicated width of 30 feet. In either case, such streets must have easements appurtenant thereto that conform to the policy of the Board with respect to drainage. After the streets are taken into the secondary state highway system, the Department shall maintain the same in the manner provided by law. However, no such street shall be taken into and become a part of the secondary state highway system unless and until any and all required permits have been obtained and any outstanding fees, charges, or other financial obligations of whatever nature have been satisfied or provision has been made, whether by the posting of a bond or otherwise, for their satisfaction.

C. Such street shall only be taken into the secondary state highway system if the governing body of the county has identified and made available the funds required to improve the street to the required minimum standards. The county may consider the following options to fund the required improvements for streets accepted under this section:

1. The governing body of the county may use a portion of the county's annual secondary state highway system construction allocation designated as rural addition funds to fund the qualifying rural addition costs for qualifying streets if the county agrees to contribute from county revenue or the special assessment of the landowners on the street in question one-half of the qualifying rural addition cost to bring the streets up to the necessary minimum standards for acceptance. No such special assessment of landowners on such streets shall be made unless the governing body of the county receives written declarations from the owners of 75 percent or more of the platted parcels of land abutting upon such streets stating their acquiescence in such assessments. The basis for such special assessments, at the option of the local governing body, shall be either (i) the proportion the value of each abutting parcel bears to the total value of all abutting parcels on such street as determined by the current evaluation of the property for real estate tax purposes, (ii) the proportion the abutting road front footage of each parcel abutting the street bears to the total abutting road front footage of all parcels abutting on the street, or (iii) an equal amount for each parcel abutting on such street. No such special assessment on any parcel shall exceed one-third of the current valuation of such property for real estate tax purposes. Special assessments under this section shall be conducted in the manner provided in Article 2 (§ 15.2-2404 et seq.) of Chapter 24 of Title 15.2, mutatis mutandis, for assessments for local improvements.

2. The governing body of any county may use a portion of its annual secondary state highway system construction allocation designated as rural addition funds to fund the qualifying rural addition cost for qualifying streets within the limitation of funds and the mileage limitation of the Board's policy on rural additions.

3. The governing body of any county may use revenues derived from the sale of bonds to finance the construction of rural additions to the secondary state highway system of such county. In addition, from the funds allocated by the Commonwealth for the construction of secondary state highway improvements, such local governing body may use funds allocated within the Board policy for the construction of rural additions to pay principal and interest on bonds associated with rural additions in such county, provided the revenue derived from the sale of such bonds is not used as the county matching contribution under § 33.2-357. The provisions of this section shall not constitute a debt or obligation of the Board or the Commonwealth.

4. The governing body of the county may expend general county revenue for the purposes of this section.

5. The governing body of the county may permit one or more of the landowners on the street in question to pay to the county a sum equal to one-half of the qualifying rural addition cost to bring the street up to the necessary minimum standards for acceptance into the secondary state highway system, which funds the county shall then utilize for such purpose. Thereafter, upon collection of the special assessment of landowners on such street, the county shall use such special assessment funds to reimburse, without interest, the one or more landowners for those funds that they previously advanced to the county to bring the street up to the necessary minimum standards for acceptance.

6. The governing body of the county may utilize the allocations made to the county in accordance with § 33.2-357.

D. In instances where it is determined that speculative interest exists, the basis for the pro rata percentage required of such developer, developers, or successor developers shall be the proportion that the value of the abutting parcels owned or partly owned by the developer, developers, or successor developers bears to the total value of all abutting property as determined by the current valuation of the property for real estate purposes. The pro rata percentage shall be applied to the Department's total estimated cost to construct such street to the necessary minimum standards for acceptance to determine the amount of costs to be borne by the developer, developers, or successor developers. Property so valuated shall not be assessed in the special assessment for the determination of the individual pro rata share attributable to other properties. Further, when such pro rata participation is accepted by the governing body of the county from such original developer, developers, or successor developers, such amount shall be deducted from the Department's total estimated cost, and the remainder of such estimated cost, the qualifying rural addition cost, shall then be the basis of determining the assessment under the special assessment provision or determining the amount to be provided by the county when funded from general county revenue under the definition of speculative interest in subsection A or determining the amount to be funded as a rural addition under the definition of qualifying rural addition cost in subsection A.

E. Acceptance of any street into the secondary state highway system for maintenance, improvement, construction, and reconstruction shall not impose any obligation on the Board to acquire any additional right-of-way or easements should they be necessary by virtue of faulty construction or design.

Code 1950; 1968, c. 601; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-72.1; 1972, c. 393; 1976, c. 391; 1977, cc. 214, 578; 1978, c. 487; 1979, c. 321; 1980, c. 96; 1981, c. 232; 1982, c. 167; 1983, cc. 171, 455; 1984, c. 146; 1987, cc. 156, 207; 1989, c. 274; 1991, c. 250; 1993, c. 71; 1995, c. 416; 1997, c. 740; 1998, cc. 330, 338, 340; 2001, c. 95; 2004, c. 677; 2006, c. 827; 2009, c. 635; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 179.

§ 33.2-336. Funds allocated to counties for Rural Addition Program; street standards.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Board and the Commissioner of Highways shall not diminish funds allocated or allocable to any county for use under the Rural Addition Program by reason of any county ordinance authorizing the use of private roads not built to standards set by the Department or construction of subdivision streets built to standards other than those established by the Department.

B. In those counties where this section is applicable, the ordinance shall also state that any and all streets that are not constructed to meet the standards necessary for inclusion in the systems of state highways shall be privately maintained and shall not be eligible for acceptance into the systems of state highways unless improved to current Department standards with funds other than those appropriated by the General Assembly and allocated by the Board. For any street that is not constructed to Department standards, the subdivision plat and all approved deeds of subdivision, or similar instruments, shall contain a statement advertising that the streets in the subdivision do not meet the standards necessary for inclusion in the systems of state highways and will not be maintained by the Department or the county approving the subdivision and are not eligible for rural addition funds, as defined in § 33.2-335, or any other funds appropriated by the General Assembly and allocated by the Board.

2006, c. 566, § 33.1-72.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-337. Contributions to primary or secondary state highway construction by counties.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any county having highways in the primary or secondary state highway system may contribute funds annually for the construction of primary or secondary highways. The funds contributed by such county shall be appropriated from the county's general revenues for use by the Department on the primary or secondary state highway system within such county as may be determined by the board of supervisors of such county in cooperation with the Department. The funds to which any county may be entitled under the provisions of § 33.2-358 for construction, improvement, or maintenance of primary or secondary highways shall not be diminished by reason of any funds contributed for that purpose by such county or by any person or entity, regardless of whether such contributions are matched by state or federal funds.

1977, c. 578, § 33.1-75.2; 1982, c. 218; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-338. Construction and improvement of primary or secondary highways by counties.

A. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this article, the governing body of any county may expend general revenues or revenues derived from the sale of bonds for the purpose of constructing or improving highways, including curbs, gutters, drainageways, sound barriers, sidewalks, and all other features or appurtenances conducive to the public safety and convenience, that either have been or may be taken into the primary or secondary state highway system. Project planning and the acquisition of rights-of-way shall be under the control and at the direction of the county, subject to the approval of project plans and specifications by the Department. All costs incurred by the Department in administering such contracts shall be reimbursed from the county's general revenues or from revenues derived from the sale of bonds or such costs may be charged against the funds that the county may be entitled to under the provisions of § 33.2-358.

B. Projects undertaken under the authority of subsection A shall not diminish the funds to which a county may be entitled under the provisions of § 33.2-357 or 33.2-358.

C. At the request of the county, the Department may agree to undertake the design, right-of-way acquisition, or construction of projects funded by the county. In such situations, the Department and the county shall enter into an agreement specifying all relevant procedures and responsibilities concerning the design, right-of-way acquisition, construction, or contract administration of projects to be funded by the county. The county shall reimburse the Department for all costs incurred by the Department in carrying out the aforesaid activities from general revenues or revenues derived from the sale of bonds.

D. Notwithstanding any contrary provision of law, any county may undertake activities toward the design, land acquisition, or construction of primary or secondary state highway projects that have been included in the six-year plan pursuant to § 33.2-331, or in the case of a primary state highway, an approved project included in the six-year improvement program of the Board. In such situations, the Department and the county shall enter into an agreement specifying all relevant procedures and responsibilities concerning the design, right-of-way acquisition, construction, or contract administration of projects to be funded by the Department. Such activities shall be undertaken with the prior concurrence of the Department, and the Department shall reimburse the county for expenses incurred in carrying out these activities. Such reimbursement shall be derived from primary or secondary highway funds that the county may be entitled to under the provisions of this chapter. The county may undertake these activities in accordance with all applicable county procedures, provided the Commissioner of Highways finds that those county procedures are substantially similar to departmental procedures and specifications.

E. If funding for the construction of a primary or interstate project is scheduled in the Board's Six-Year Improvement Program as defined in § 33.2-214, a locality may choose to advance funds to the project. If such advance is offered, the Board may consider such request and agree to such advancement and the subsequent reimbursement of the locality of the advance in accordance with terms agreed upon by the Board or its designee and the locality.

F. Any county carrying out any construction project as authorized in this section may, in so doing, exercise the powers granted the Commissioner of Highways under Article 1 (§ 33.2-1000 et seq.) of Chapter 10 to enter property for the purpose of making an examination and survey thereof, with a view to ascertainment of its suitability for highway purposes and any other purpose incidental thereto.

G. For the purposes of this section, any county without an existing franchise agreement, when administering a Department-sanctioned project under a land-use permit or transportation project agreement, shall have the same authority as the Department pertaining to the relocation of utilities.

H. Whenever so requested by any county, funding of any project undertaken as provided in this section may be supplemented solely by state funds in order to avoid the necessity of complying with additional federal requirements, provided a determination has been made by the Department that (i) adequate state funds are available to fully match available federal transportation funds and (ii) the Department can meet its federal obligation authority, as permitted by federal law.

1981, c. 321, § 33.1-75.3; 1982, c. 218; 1983, cc. 321, 325; 1984, c. 127; 1985, c. 562; 1988, c. 654; 1989, c. 143; 1990, c. 36; 1995, c. 105; 1998, cc. 334, 341, 342; 2000, c. 88; 2003, c. 303; 2005, c. 342; 2006, cc. 115, 827; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-339. Maintenance, etc., of streets and highways in certain towns from secondary funds.

The Commissioner of Highways may, subject to the approval of the Board, upon request of the governing bodies of towns with a population of less than 3,500, according to the last United States census, select certain streets and highways in such towns for maintenance, improvement, construction, and reconstruction from allocations available from secondary highway funds not to exceed two miles of streets or highways in such towns included in the secondary state highway system, whether such two miles of streets or highways constitute connecting links between highways in the secondary state highway system in the counties or between highways in the secondary state highway system and highways in the primary state highway system, or not.

The Commissioner of Highways, with the approval of the Board, in addition to the said two miles may increase the mileage of streets and highways in such towns annually, not to exceed in any one year one-fourth mile, exclusive of any mileage transferred from the primary state highway system under the provisions of § 33.2-315 or any mileage maintained by the Department prior to its annexation by such town.

Code 1950, § 33-50.1; 1954, c. 534; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-79; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-340. Maintenance, etc., by Commissioner of Highways when no request for allocation.

If no request is made to the Board by the governing body of any town as provided in § 33.2-339, the Commissioner of Highways, subject to the approval of the Board, may maintain, improve, construct, and reconstruct all streets in such town that (i) have an unrestricted right-of-way width of not less than 30 feet and a hard-surface width of not less than 12 feet; (ii) were established after July 1, 1950, by such town and have a right-of-way width of not less than 50 feet and a hard-surface width of not less than 20 feet; or (iii) are functionally classified as local streets and were constructed on or after January 1, 1996, and, at the time of approval by the town, met the criteria for pavement width and right-of-way of the then-current edition design standards for subdivision streets as set forth in regulations adopted by the Board.

Code 1950; 1950, p. 162, § 33-50.4; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-82; 1992, c. 108; 1999, c. 318; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-341. Maps of secondary state highway system.

The Commissioner of Highways shall prepare and keep on file in his office for public inspection a complete map for each county showing the route of the secondary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-51; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-84; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-342. Resumption of responsibility for secondary state highways by counties.

Notwithstanding any provisions of § 11 of Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932 and §§ 33.2-341, 33.2-343, 33.2-345, and 33.2-346, the Commissioner of Highways, following receipt of a resolution adopted by the board of supervisors of a county requesting such action, may enter into an agreement with any county that desires to resume responsibility over all or any portion of the secondary state highway system within such county's boundaries for the purposes of planning, constructing, maintaining, and operating such highways. Such agreement shall specify the equipment, facilities, personnel, and funding that will be provided to the county in order to implement such agreement's provisions.

Any county that resumes full responsibility for all of the secondary state highway system within such county's boundaries (i) shall have authority and control over the secondary state highway system within its boundaries, (ii) shall be deemed to have withdrawn from the secondary state highway system, and (iii) shall receive payments in accordance with § 33.2-366. The resolution requesting resumption of all responsibilities shall also include a request for the transfer and release of all rights-of-way and rights of access along the secondary state highway system within the county's boundaries.

2001, cc. 257, 273, 277, § 33.1-84.1; 2009, c. 476; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-343. Return after withdrawal from secondary state highway system.

Any county that has withdrawn its roads from the secondary state highway system under the provisions of § 11 of Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932 shall have the right at any time to bring itself back within such secondary state highway system, provided the decision is approved by a majority of the qualified voters of such county voting in an election called for that purpose as provided in this article.

Code 1950, § 33-53; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-85; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-344. Election to determine return to the secondary state highway system.

Upon the petition of qualified voters of any county that proposes to return its roads to the secondary state highway system equal in number to at least 20 percent of the number counted in such county for presidential electors at the last preceding presidential election or 250, whichever is more, the circuit court of such county shall make an order requiring the judges of election on such day as may be fixed in the order, but not less than 30 days after the date of the order, to open a poll and take the sense of the qualified voters of the county on the question of whether or not such county shall return to the secondary state highway system. The qualifications of voters at each such election shall be as provided by §§ 24.2-400 through 24.2-403.

The ballots for use at any such election shall be printed to state the question as follows:

"Shall ____________________ county (the name of such county to be inserted) return to the secondary state highway system for maintenance and construction by the Commonwealth?

[ ] Yes

[ ] No"

The ballots shall be printed, marked, and counted and returns made and canvassed as in other elections and as provided in § 24.2-684. The results shall be certified by the secretary of the appropriate electoral board to the State Board of Elections, to the court ordering the election, and to such other authority as may be proper to accomplish the purpose of the election. All other proceedings in connection with any such election shall be in conformity with the proceedings prescribed in § 11 of Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932.

Code 1950, § 33-54; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-86; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-345. Effect of election to determine return to the secondary state highway system.

If the result of an election pursuant to § 33.2-344 is in favor of the county returning to the secondary state highway system, such county shall, after the entry by the court of an order so declaring the result of such election and on and after the first day of July next succeeding, be within the secondary state highway system as fully and completely as if it had not withdrawn. All provisions of this article shall thereupon apply to and be enforced as to such county to the same extent as if the dates in Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932 had been changed to correspond with the year in which such county returns to the secondary state highway system. Such county shall not be allowed again to withdraw from the secondary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-55; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-87; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-346. Machinery, etc., owned by returning county.

The Commissioner of Highways shall, as promptly as practicable, make an inventory and appraisal of all road machinery, equipment, teams, material, and supplies on hand or belonging to the local highway authorities of any county that returns to the secondary state highway system or any district thereof that may be deemed by him suitable for work on the secondary state highway system and shall file such inventory and appraisal with the Board. The local highway authorities may, if they so elect, turn over to the Commonwealth such road machinery, equipment, teams, material, and supplies at the appraised value thereof, which shall be paid within two years out of funds available for expenditure on highways in the secondary state highway system, or, if they so prefer, the local highway authorities may retain or sell any of such property otherwise or, if they so elect, may turn over to the Commissioner of Highways all or any of such property for use upon the secondary state highway system without reimbursement therefor. Any sums received by the local highway authorities under the provisions of this section shall, so far as may be necessary, be applied on account of obligations previously contracted for county or district highway purposes and the balance, if any, for general county purposes.

Code 1950, § 33-56; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-88; 2014, c. 805.

Article 4. Urban Highway System.

§ 33.2-347. Minimum street and highway standards for certain towns.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-340, any town in which 70 percent or more of developable land within its boundaries has a natural grade of 20 percent or more may by ordinance provide for streets or highways established on or after July 1, 1980, with an unrestricted right-of-way width of not less than 40 feet and a hard-surface width of not less than 18 feet, provided that no such requirement of any such town shall be less stringent than that of the county in which the town is located. Streets and highways so established and constructed shall be eligible for payment in accordance with § 33.2-340.

1980, c. 374, § 33.1-43.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-348. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2015, c. 684, cl. 6, effective July 1, 2016.

§ 33.2-349. Character of signs, markings, and signals.

On any urban highway upon which the Board has expended funds, the location, form, and character of informational, regulatory, and warning signs, curb and pavement, or other markings and traffic signals installed or placed by any public authority shall be subject to the approval of the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-35.7; 1964, c. 256; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-46; 1977, c. 578; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-350. Landscape studies for urban highway construction projects.

Prior to final design of any urban highway funded in part by any municipality, such municipality may hire a competent authority to conduct a landscape study that shall assess the effect such proposed highway construction may have on existing trees, shrubbery, and other flora and shall make recommendations as to modifications to such project that would minimize damage to existing flora. The Department shall consider such recommendations and modify such highway construction plans to protect trees, shrubbery, and other flora if determined by the Department to be reasonable and practicable. The cost of such landscape study shall be payable by the municipality that initiates such study.

1975, c. 555, § 33.1-47.1; 2014, c. 805.

Article 5. Allocation of Highway Funds.

§ 33.2-351. Definition of "allocation.".

For the purposes of this article, "allocation" means a commitment to expend funds available for construction during each fiscal year. Funds that cannot be expended as allocated within each fiscal year shall be identified as part of future commitments, and the reason for the failure to spend allocations shall be specifically included in the annual construction improvement program.

1982, c. 418, § 33.1-23.01; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-352. Asset management practices; report.

A. The Department shall develop asset management practices in the operation and maintenance of the systems of state highways. Such practices shall include a transparent methodology for the allocation of funds from the Highway Maintenance and Operating Fund established pursuant to § 33.2-1530 to highway systems maintenance and operations programs, including the allocations among the highway construction districts and among the Interstate System and primary and secondary state highway systems.

B. The Commissioner of Highways shall advise the Board on or before June 30 of even-numbered years of performance targets and outcomes that are expected to be achieved, based on the funding identified for maintenance, over the biennium beginning July 1 of that year. In addition, not later than September 30 of even-numbered years, the Commissioner of Highways shall advise the Board on the Department's accomplishments relative to the expected outcomes and budget expenditures for the biennium ending June 30 of that year and also advise the Board as to the methodology used to determine maintenance needs and the justification as to the maintenance funding by source.

1985, c. 42, § 33.1-23.02; 2002, cc. 302, 570; 2006, Sp. Sess. I, c. 9; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-353. Commonwealth Transportation Board to develop and update Statewide Transportation Plan.

A. The Board shall, with the assistance of the Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment, conduct a comprehensive review of statewide transportation needs in a Statewide Transportation Plan setting forth assessment of capacity needs for all corridors of statewide significance, regional networks, and improvements to promote urban development areas established pursuant to § 15.2-2223.1. The assessment shall consider all modes of transportation. Such corridors shall be planned to include multimodal transportation improvements, and the plan shall consider corridor location in planning for any major transportation infrastructure, including environmental impacts and the comprehensive land use plan of the locality in which the corridor is planned. In the designation of such corridors, the Board shall not be constrained by local, district, regional, or modal plans.

The Statewide Transportation Plan shall be updated as needed but no less than once every four years. The plan shall promote economic development and all transportation modes, intermodal connectivity, environmental quality, accessibility for people and freight, and transportation safety.

B. The Statewide Transportation Plan shall establish goals, objectives, and priorities that cover at least a 20-year planning horizon, in accordance with federal transportation planning requirements. The plan shall include quantifiable measures and achievable goals relating to, but not limited to, congestion reduction and safety, transit and high-occupancy vehicle facility use, job-to-housing ratios, job and housing access to transit and pedestrian facilities, air quality, movement of freight by rail, and per capita vehicle miles traveled. The Board shall consider such goals in evaluating and selecting transportation improvement projects for inclusion in the Six-Year Improvement Program pursuant to § 33.2-214.

C. The plan shall incorporate the measures and goals of the approved long-range plans developed by the applicable regional organizations. Each such plan shall be summarized in a public document and made available to the general public upon presentation to the Governor and General Assembly.

D. It is the intent of the General Assembly that this plan assess transportation needs and assign priorities to projects on a statewide basis, avoiding the production of a plan that is an aggregation of local, district, regional, or modal plans.

1985, c. 320, § 33.1-23.03; 2001, cc. 764, 772; 2002, c. 639; 2007, c. 896; 2009, cc. 670, 690, 864, 871; 2011, cc. 104, 164; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-354. Commonwealth Transportation Board to develop and update Statewide Pedestrian Policy.

A. The Board shall develop and update as needed a Statewide Pedestrian Policy. The Board shall:

1. Provide opportunities for receipt of comments, suggestions, and information from local governments, business and civic organizations, and other concerned parties;

2. Identify and evaluate needs at statewide, regional, and local levels for additional facilities required to promote pedestrian access to schools, places of employment and recreation, and major activity centers;

3. Consider and evaluate potential ways of meeting these needs; and

4. Set forth conclusions as to goals, objectives, and strategies to meet these needs in a safety-conscious manner.

B. The Board shall coordinate the development of the Statewide Pedestrian Policy with that of the Statewide Transportation Plan provided for in § 33.2-353 and cover the same 20-year planning horizon. The Statewide Pedestrian Policy shall be summarized in a public document and made available to the general public upon presentation to the Governor and General Assembly, either in combination with the Statewide Transportation Plan or as a separate document.

2002, c. 453, § 33.1-23.03:001; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-355. Goals for addressing transportation needs of populations with limited mobility.

The Board, in cooperation with other local, regional, or statewide agencies and entities vested with transportation planning responsibilities, shall establish specific mobility goals for addressing the transportation needs of populations with limited mobility, including the elderly, persons with disabilities that limit their mobility, persons not served by any form of mass transit, and those who, for whatever reasons, cannot afford motor vehicles or cannot be licensed to drive them. Such goals, once established, shall be considered in the development and implementation of the Statewide Transportation Plan required by § 33.2-353.

2006, cc. 395, 508, § 33.1-23.03:002; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-356. Funding for extraordinary repairs.

Notwithstanding any contrary provision of this Code, the Board has the authority to provide, from revenues available for highway capital improvements under § 33.2-1526, except for revenues pledged to secure any bonds issued for transportation purposes, for exceptionally heavy expenditures for repairs or replacements made necessary by highway damage resulting from extraordinary accidents, vandalism, weather conditions, or acts of God as well as to respond to federal funding initiatives that require matching funds.

1986, Sp. Sess., c. 13, § 33.1-23.03:6; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-357. Revenue-sharing funds for systems in certain localities.

A. From revenues made available by the General Assembly and appropriated for the improvement, construction, reconstruction, or maintenance of the systems of state highways, the Board may make an equivalent matching allocation to any locality for designations by the governing body of up to $5 million for use by the locality to improve, construct, maintain, or reconstruct the highway systems within such locality with up to $2.5 million for use by the locality to maintain the highway systems within such locality. After adopting a resolution supporting the action, the governing body of the locality may request revenue-sharing funds to improve, construct, reconstruct, or maintain a highway system located in another locality or between two or more localities or to bring subdivision streets, used as such prior to the date specified in § 33.2-335, up to standards sufficient to qualify them for inclusion in the primary or secondary state highway system. All requests for funding shall be accompanied by a prioritized listing of specified projects.

B. In allocating funds under this section, the Board shall give priority to projects as follows: first, to projects that have previously received an allocation of funds pursuant to this section; second, to projects that (i) meet a transportation need identified in the Statewide Transportation Plan pursuant to § 33.2-353 or (ii) accelerate a project in a locality's capital plan; and third, to projects that address pavement resurfacing and bridge rehabilitation projects where the maintenance needs analysis determines that the infrastructure does not meet the Department's maintenance performance targets.

C. The Department shall contract with the locality for the implementation of the project. Such contract may cover either a single project or may provide for the locality's implementation of several projects. The locality shall undertake implementation of the particular project by obtaining the necessary permits from the Department in order to ensure that the improvement is consistent with the Department's standards for such improvements. At the request of the locality, the Department may provide the locality with engineering, right-of-way acquisition, construction, or maintenance services for a project with its own forces. The locality shall provide payment to the Department for any such services. If administered by the Department, such contract shall also require that the governing body of the locality pay to the Department within 30 days the local revenue-sharing funds upon written notice by the Department of its intent to proceed. Any project having funds allocated under this program shall be initiated in such a fashion that at least a portion of such funds have been expended within one year of allocation. Any revenue-sharing funds for projects not initiated after two subsequent fiscal years of allocation may be reallocated at the discretion of the Board.

D. Total Commonwealth funds allocated by the Board under this section shall not exceed the greater of $100 million or seven percent of funds available for distribution pursuant to subsection D of § 33.2-358 prior to the distribution of funds pursuant to this section, whichever is greater, in each fiscal year, subject to appropriation for such purpose. For any fiscal year in which less than the full program allocation has been allocated by the Board to specific governing bodies, those localities requesting the maximum allocation under subsection A may be allowed an additional allocation at the discretion of the Board.

E. The funds allocated by the Board under this section shall be distributed and administered in accordance with the revenue-sharing program guidelines established by the Board.

2006, c. 827, § 33.1-23.05; 2008, c. 608; 2011, cc. 830, 868; 2012, cc. 729, 733; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684; 2018, c. 828.

§ 33.2-358. Allocation of funds among highway systems.

A. For the purposes of this section:

"Bridge reconstruction and rehabilitation" means reconstruction and rehabilitation of those bridges identified by the Department as being functionally obsolete or structurally deficient.

"High priority projects" means those projects of regional or statewide significance identified by the Board that reduce congestion, increase safety, create jobs, or increase economic development.

"High-tech infrastructure improvements" means those projects or programs identified by the Board that reduce congestion, improve mobility, improve safety, provide up-to-date travel data, or improve emergency response.

B. The Board shall allocate each year from all funds made available for highway purposes such amount as it deems reasonable and necessary for the maintenance of roads within the Interstate System, the primary state highway system, and the secondary state highway system and for city and town street maintenance payments made pursuant to § 33.2-319 and payments made to counties that have withdrawn or elect to withdraw from the secondary state highway system pursuant to § 33.2-366.

C. Until July 1, 2020, after funds are set aside for administrative and general expenses and pursuant to other provisions in this title that provide for the disposition of funds prior to allocation for highway purposes, and after allocation is made pursuant to subsection B, the Board shall allocate an amount determined by the Board not to exceed $500 million in any given year as follows: (i) 25 percent to bridge reconstruction and rehabilitation; (ii) 25 percent to advancing high priority projects statewide; (iii) 25 percent to reconstructing deteriorated Interstate System, primary state highway system, and municipality maintained primary extension pavements determined to have a Combined Condition Index of less than 60; (iv) 15 percent to projects undertaken pursuant to the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995 (§ 33.2-1800 et seq.); (v) five percent to paving or improving unpaved highways carrying more than 50 vehicles per day; and (vi) five percent to the Innovation and Technology Transportation Fund established pursuant to § 33.2-1531 for high-tech infrastructure improvements, provided that at the discretion of the Board such percentages of funds may be adjusted in any given year to meet project cash flow needs or when funds cannot be expended due to legal, environmental, or other project management considerations. After such allocations are made, the Board may allocate each year up to 10 percent of the funds remaining for highway purposes for the undertaking and financing of rail projects that in the Board's determination will result in mitigation of highway congestion. After the foregoing allocations have been made, the Board shall allocate the remaining funds available for highway purposes, exclusive of federal funds for the Interstate System, pursuant to § 33.2-360 and any funds not allocated to a project in the Six-Year Improvement Program as follows:

50 percent for the high-priority projects program established pursuant to § 33.2-370 and 50 percent for the highway construction district grant programs established pursuant to § 33.2-371.

D. For funds allocated for fiscal years beginning on and after July 1, 2020, after funds are set aside for administrative and general expenses and pursuant to other provisions in this title that provide for the disposition of funds prior to allocation for highway purposes, and after allocation is made pursuant to subsection B, the Board shall allocate all remaining funds, including funds apportioned pursuant to 23 U.S.C. § 104, as follows:

1. Forty-five percent of the remaining funds to state of good repair purposes as set forth in § 33.2-369;

2. Twenty-seven and one-half percent of the remaining funds to the high-priority projects program established pursuant to § 33.2-370; and

3. Twenty-seven and one-half percent of the remaining funds to the highway construction district grant programs established pursuant to § 33.2-371.

E. The funds allocated in subsection C or D shall not include any federal funds and related state match for federal funds with restrictions regarding the construction of general capacity expansion of roadways, or federal funds not under the control of the Board. Such exclusion shall not include restrictions on the location of projects to specific road classifications.

F. In addition, the Board, from funds appropriated for such purpose in the general appropriation act, shall allocate additional funds to the Cities of Newport News, Norfolk, and Portsmouth and the County of Warren in such manner and apportion such funds among such localities as the Board may determine, unless otherwise provided in the general appropriation act. The localities shall use such funds to address highway maintenance and repair needs created by or associated with port operations in those localities.

G. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the General Assembly may, through the general appropriation act, permit the Governor to increase the amounts to be allocated to highway maintenance, highway construction, either or both.

1977, c. 578, § 33.1-23.1; 1979, c. 84; 1985, c. 42; 1986, c. 572; 2006, c. 937; 2007, c. 305; 2012, cc. 729, 733; 2014, cc. 87, 290, 741, 805; 2015, cc. 676, 684.

§ 33.2-359. Unpaved secondary highway funds.

A. Funds from the highway construction district grant programs established pursuant to § 33.2-371 shall be allocated for the improvement of nonsurface treated secondary highways that carry 50 or more vehicles per day. Funds shall be deducted from the allocation made to each highway construction district pursuant to subsection D of § 33.2-371 and such deduction shall be based on the ratio of nonsurface treated secondary highways in each highway construction district that carry 50 or more vehicles per day to the total number of such nonsurface treated secondary highways in the Commonwealth.

Total funds of the Commonwealth allocated by the Board under this section shall not exceed $25 million annually.

B. Such funds shall be distributed to counties in the secondary state highway system based on the ratio of nonsurface treated roads in each county carrying 50 vehicles or more per day to the total number of such nonsurface treated roads in the Commonwealth.

1979, c. 84, § 33.1-23.1:1; 1985, c. 42; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-360. Allocation of funds for interstate match.

Until July 1, 2020, after making the allocations provided for in subsection B of § 33.2-358, a fund shall be established for matching federal-aid interstate funds.

This fund shall be established annually by allocating to it all federal-aid interstate matching funds needed for the year.

1985, c. 42, § 33.1-23.1:2; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-361. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2015, ch. 684, cl. 5.

§ 33.2-363. Construction of U.S. Route 29 bypass.

If the construction of a U.S. Route 29 bypass around any city located in any county that both (i) is located outside Planning District 8 and (ii) operates under the county executive form of government is not constructed because of opposition from a metropolitan planning organization, and the Federal Highway Administration requires the Commonwealth to reimburse the federal government for federal funds expended in connection with such project, an amount equal to the amount of such reimbursement shall be deducted by the Board from funds allocated or allocable to the highway construction district in which the project was located. Furthermore, in the event of such nonconstruction, an amount equal to the total of all state funds expended on such project shall be deducted by the Board from funds allocated or allocable to the highway construction district in which the project was located.

2004, c. 1025, § 33.1-223.2:13; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-364. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2015, ch. 684, cl. 5.

§ 33.2-365. Allocation of proceeds of Commonwealth of Virginia Transportation Capital Projects Revenue Bonds.

The Board shall allocate, use, and distribute the proceeds of any bonds it is authorized to issue on or after July 1, 2007, pursuant to subdivision 10 of § 33.2-1701, as follows:

1. A minimum of 20 percent of the bond proceeds shall be used for transit capital as further described in subdivision A 4 c of § 58.1-638.

2. A minimum of 4.3 percent of the bond proceeds shall be used for rail capital consistent with the provisions of §§ 33.2-1601 and 33.2-1602.

3. The remaining amount of bond proceeds shall be used for paying the costs incurred or to be incurred for construction of transportation projects with such bond proceeds used or allocated as follows: (i) first, to match federal highway funds projected to be made available and allocated to highway and public transportation capital projects to the extent determined by the Board, for purposes of allowing additional state construction funds to be allocated pursuant to § 33.2-358; (ii) second, to provide any required funding to fulfill the Commonwealth's allocation of equivalent revenue sharing matching funds pursuant to § 33.2-357 to the extent determined by the Board; and (iii) third, to pay or fund the costs of statewide or regional projects throughout the Commonwealth. Costs incurred or to be incurred for construction or funding of these transportation projects shall include environmental and engineering studies; rights-of-way acquisition; improvements to all modes of transportation; acquisition, construction, and related improvements; and any financing costs or other financing expenses relating to such bonds. Such costs may include the payment of interest on such bonds for a period during construction and not exceeding one year after completion of construction of the relevant project.

4. The total amount of bonds authorized shall be used for purposes of applying the percentages in subdivisions 1, 2, and 3.

2007, c. 896, § 33.1-23.4:01; 2011, cc. 830, 868; 2013, c. 639; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-366. Funds for counties that have withdrawn or elect to withdraw from the secondary state highway system.

Pursuant to subsection B of § 33.2-358, the Board shall make the following payments to counties that have withdrawn or elect to withdraw from the secondary state highway system under the provisions of § 11 of Chapter 415 of the Acts of Assembly of 1932 and that have not elected to return: to any county having withdrawn prior to June 30, 1985, and having an area greater than 100 square miles, an amount equal to $12,529 per lane-mile for fiscal year 2014, and to any county having an area less than 100 square miles, an amount equal to $17,218 per lane-mile for fiscal year 2014; to any county that elects to withdraw after June 30, 1985, the Board shall establish a rate per lane-mile for the first year using (i) an amount for maintenance based on maintenance standards and unit costs used by the Department to prepare its secondary state highway system maintenance budget for the year in which the county withdraws and (ii) an amount for administration equal to five percent of the maintenance figure determined in clause (i). The payment rates shall be adjusted annually by the Board in accordance with procedures established for adjusting payments to cities and towns under § 33.2-319, and lane mileage shall be adjusted annually to include (a) streets and highways accepted for maintenance in the county system by the local governing body or (b) streets and highways constructed according to standards set forth in the county subdivision ordinance or county thoroughfare plan, and being not less than the standards set by the Department. Such counties shall be eligible to receive allocations pursuant to subsection C or D of § 33.2-358.

Payment of the funds shall be made in four equal sums, one in each quarter of the fiscal year.

The chief administrative officer of such counties receiving such funds shall make annual reports of expenditures to the Board, in such form as the Board shall prescribe, accounting for all expenditures, including delineation between construction and maintenance expenditures and reporting on their performance as specified in subsection B of § 33.2-352. Such reports shall be included in the scope of the annual audit of each county conducted by independent certified public accountants.

1985, c. 42, § 33.1-23.5:1; 2004, c. 118; 2013, c. 766; 2013, Sp. Sess. I, c. 1; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-367. Highway aid to mass transit.

In allocating highway funds, the Board may use such funds for highway aid to mass transit facilities when such use will best accomplish the purpose of serving the transportation needs of the greatest number of people.

Highway aid to mass transit may be accomplished by (i) using highway funds to aid in paying transit operating costs borne by localities; (ii) acquiring or constructing transit-related highway facilities such as exclusive bus lanes; bus turn-outs; bus passenger shelters; fringe parking facilities, including necessary access roads, to promote transit use and relieve highway congestion; and off-street parking facilities to permit exclusive use of curb lane by buses; or (iii) permitting mass transit facilities to occupy highway median strips without the reimbursement required by § 33.2-1015, all to the end that highway traffic may be relieved through the development of more efficient mass transit.

Expenditures pursuant to this section shall be made from funds available for the construction of state highways within the highway construction district in which the transit facilities are wholly or partly located.

The Board may contract with the governing bodies constituting a transportation district, or in its discretion, other local governing bodies, for the accomplishment of a project to which funds have been allocated under the provisions of this section. Whenever such projects are being financed by advance annual allocation of funds, the Board may make such funds available to the contracting governing bodies in annual increments that may be used for other transit purposes until needed for the project for which allocated; however, the Board may require bond or other satisfactory assurance of final completion of the contract.

The Board may also, at the request of local governing bodies, use funds allocated for urban highways or secondary highways within their jurisdiction to accomplish the purposes of this section.

The General Assembly may, through the general appropriation act, provide for (i) limits on the amounts or purposes of allocations made under this section and (ii) the transfer of allocations from one eligible recipient to another.

Code 1950, § 33-35.8; 1970, c. 503, § 33.1-1; 1972, c. 490; 1973, c. 508, § 33.1-46.1; 1977, c. 578; 1980, c. 373; 1986, c. 392; 1998, cc. 905, 907; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-368. Financial plans for transportation construction projects.

For transportation construction projects valued in excess of $100 million, the Commissioner of Highways shall require that a financial plan be prepared and presented to the Board for its review. This plan shall include, but not be limited to, the following: (i) a complete cost estimate for all major project elements, (ii) an implementation plan with the project schedule and cost-to-complete information presented for each year, (iii) identified revenues by funding source available each year to meet project costs, (iv) a detailed cash-flow analysis for each year of the proposed project, and (v) efforts to be made to ensure maximum involvement of private enterprise and private capital.

2013, cc. 585, 646, § 33.1-23.5:3; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-369. State of good repair.

A. As used in this section, "state of good repair purposes" means improvement of deficient pavement conditions and improvement of structurally deficient bridges.

B. The Board shall use funds allocated in § 33.2-358 and § 58.1-1741 to state of good repair purposes for reconstruction and replacement of structurally deficient state and locally owned bridges and reconstruction and rehabilitation of pavement on the Interstate System and primary state highway system determined to be deteriorated by the Board, including municipality-maintained primary extensions.

The Board shall allocate these funds to projects in all nine highway construction districts for state of good repair purposes based on a priority ranking system that takes into consideration (i) the number, condition, and costs of structurally deficient bridges and (ii) the mileage, condition, and costs to replace deteriorated pavements. The Board shall ensure an equitable needs-based distribution of funding among the highway construction districts, with no district receiving more than 17.5 percent or less than 5.5 percent of the total funding allocated in any given year. The Board may, by a duly adopted resolution, waive the cap provided in this section for a fiscal year only when it determines that due to extraordinary circumstances or needs the cap inhibits the ability of the Department to address a key pavement or bridge need that has been identified.

C. In any year in which the Department has not met the established targets for secondary pavements developed in accordance with § 33.2-232 and before making the allocations in subsection B, the Board may allocate up to 20 percent of these funds to all nine highway construction districts to improve the condition of secondary pavements. The Board shall ensure an equitable needs-based distribution of funds among highway construction districts based on the mileage, condition, and cost to improve secondary pavements.

2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-370. High-priority projects program.

A. As used in this section, "high-priority projects" means those projects of regional or statewide significance, such as projects that reduce congestion or increase safety, accessibility, environmental quality, or economic development.

B. The Board shall establish a high-priority projects program and shall use funds allocated in § 33.2-358 to the program for projects and strategies that address a transportation need identified for a corridor of statewide significance or a regional network in the Statewide Transportation Plan pursuant to § 33.2-353. From funds allocated to this program, the Board shall allocate funds to the Innovation and Technology Transportation Fund, provided that the allocation shall not exceed $25 million annually.

In selecting projects and strategies for funding under this program, the Board shall screen, evaluate, and select candidate projects and strategies according to the process established pursuant to subsection B of § 33.2-214.1.

2015, c. 684.

§ 33.2-371. Highway construction district grant programs.

A. As used in this section:

"Land area" means the total land area of the counties within a highway construction district reduced by the area of any military reservations and state or national parks or forests within its boundaries and such other similar areas and facilities of five square miles in area or more, as may be determined by the Board.

"Population" means the population according to the latest U.S. census or the latest population estimates made by the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service of the University of Virginia, whichever is more recent.

B. The Board shall establish a grant program in each highway construction district to fund projects and strategies that address a need in the Statewide Transportation Plan developed pursuant to § 33.2-353.

C. The Board shall solicit candidate projects and strategies from local governments for consideration in the applicable highway construction district's grant program. Candidate projects and strategies shall be screened, evaluated, and selected by the Board according to the process established pursuant to subsection B of § 33.2-214.1 but shall be within a highway construction district and not outside such highway construction district. Candidate projects and strategies from localities within a highway construction district shall be scored against projects and strategies within the same highway construction district. Only those candidate projects and strategies submitted by a locality shall be funded.

D. Funds allocated to this program under § 33.2-358 shall be distributed to each highway construction district for that district's grant program as follows:

1. Thirty percent based on the ratio of the population of the cities and towns eligible to receive payments pursuant to § 33.2-319 within a highway construction district to the total population of the cities and towns eligible to receive payments pursuant to § 33.2-319 within the Commonwealth;

2. Twenty-eight percent based on the ratio of vehicle miles traveled on primary highways within the highway construction district to the total vehicle miles traveled on primary highways in the Commonwealth;

3. Twenty-four percent based on the ratio of the population of counties within a highway construction district to the total population of all counties within the Commonwealth;

4. Ten percent based on the ratio of the number of primary lane-miles in the highway construction district to the total number of primary lane-miles within the Commonwealth;

5. Six percent based on the ratio of the land area of counties within the highway construction district to the total land area of counties within the Commonwealth; and

6. Two percent based on a primary need factor based on addressing the largest under-allocation to highway construction districts relative to primary needs.

E. Projects awarded funds under a grant program established by this section may be administered by the local government pursuant to § 33.2-228 or by the Department.

2015, c. 684.

Chapter 4. Limited Access Highways, Scenic Highways and Virginia Byways, and Highways Over Dams.

§ 33.2-400. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Limited access highway" means a highway especially designed for through traffic, over which abutters have no easement or right of light, air, or access by reason of the fact that their property abuts upon such limited access highway.

"Scenic highway" means a highway, designated as such by the Board, within a protected scenic corridor located, designed, and constructed so as to preserve and enhance the natural beauty and cultural value of the countryside.

"Virginia byway" means a highway, designated as such by the Board, having relatively high aesthetic or cultural value, leading to or within areas of historical, natural, or recreational significance.

Code 1950, §§ 33-37, 33-43.3; 1966, c. 11; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-57, 33.1-64; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-401. Power and authority of Commonwealth Transportation Board relating to limited access highways.

The Board may plan, designate, acquire, open, construct, reconstruct, improve, maintain, discontinue, abandon, and regulate the use of limited access highways in the same manner in which it is now or may be authorized to plan, designate, acquire, open, construct, reconstruct, improve, maintain, discontinue, abandon, and regulate the use of other highways within the Commonwealth. The Board shall also have any and all other additional authority and power relative to other highways, which shall include the right to acquire by purchase, eminent domain, grant, or dedication title to such lands or rights-of-way for such limited access highways.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Code, any highway, street, or portion thereof to which access rights of abutters have been acquired by the Board and which is subsequently incorporated into the street system of a city or town by any method shall remain limited access until and unless the governing body of the city or town, after securing the approval of the Board, acts to discontinue such limited access feature.

Code 1950, § 33-38; 1950, p. 476; 1962, c. 348; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-58; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-402. Designating existing highway as limited access highway; extinguishing easements of access.

The Board may designate all or any part of an existing highway as a limited access highway. When an existing highway is so designated, the Board shall where necessary extinguish all existing easements of access, light, or air.

Code 1950, § 33-39; 1950, p. 476; 1958, c. 571; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-59; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-403. Business enterprises restricted on limited access highway right-of-way.

No commercial establishment or business enterprise shall be constructed or located upon any right-of-way of any limited access highway.

Code 1950, § 33-40.1; 1958, c. 490; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-60; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-404. Service roads parallel to limited access highways; standards for access, service, etc.

The Department may construct service roads parallel to a limited access highway in order to provide access at designated points for property owners abutting on the limited access highway and after the construction of such service roads shall maintain and regulate traffic over them.

The construction or alteration of any access, feeder, or service road that is to serve properties isolated by construction of a limited access highway shall meet all minimum state standards or the standards of the cities or towns with a population of more than 3,500, or of counties that maintain their own road networks, as provided for by ordinance, whichever is more strict.

Code 1950, § 33-41; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-61; 2013, cc. 585, 646; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-405. Designation of scenic highways and Virginia byways.

The Board is authorized to designate any highway as a scenic highway or as a Virginia byway. This designation shall be made in cooperation with the Director of the Department of Conservation and Recreation. Prior to designation, the local governing body and local planning commission, if any, in each county or city wherein the proposed scenic highway or Virginia byway is located shall be given notice and, upon request by any of the local governing bodies, the Board shall hold a hearing in one of the counties or cities wherein the proposed scenic highway or Virginia byway is located.

Code 1950, § 33-43.1; 1966, c. 11; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-62; 1974, c. 319; 1984, c. 739; 1989, c. 656; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-406. Selecting Virginia byways.

In selecting a Virginia byway, the Board and the Director of the Department of Conservation and Recreation shall give preference to corridors controlled by zoning or otherwise, so as to reasonably protect the aesthetic or cultural value of the highway.

Code 1950, § 33-43.2; 1966, c. 11; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-63; 1984, c. 739; 1989, c. 656; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-407. Signage of scenic highways and Virginia byways.

When the Board designates a highway as a scenic highway or as a Virginia byway, it shall be appropriately signed as such.

Code 1950, § 33-43.4; 1966, c. 11; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-65; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-408. Acquisition of adjacent land.

When the Board has designated a highway as a Virginia byway or as a scenic highway, the Commissioner of Highways may acquire by gift or purchase such land, or interests therein, of primary importance for the preservation of natural beauty adjacent to Virginia byways or scenic highways.

Code 1950, § 33-43.5; 1966, c. 11; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-66; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-409. Duty of owner or occupier of dam over which state highway passes; penalty.

Every owner or occupier of a dam over which a state highway passes shall keep such dam in good order, at least 12 feet wide at the top, and also keep in good order the substructure of a bridge of like width over the pier heads, floodgates, or any wastecut through or around the dam, provided that when these requirements have been met, the superstructure of any such bridge shall be maintained by the Commissioner of Highways. The Commissioner of Highways shall inspect all such bridges and report any needed repairs to the owner in writing. If such owner fails to comply with the provisions of this chapter, he is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of $2 for every such failure of 24 hours. However, if a milldam is carried away or destroyed by flood or any other extraordinary natural cause, the owner or occupier thereof shall not be subject to such fine until one month after any mill operated in whole or in part by water impounded by such dam has been put into operation by such waterpower.

Code 1950, § 33-90; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-176; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-410. Duties of Commissioner of Highways related to dams over which a state highway passes.

The Commissioner of Highways may, at his own cost and expense, widen or strengthen any dam or bridge over which a state highway passes to a sufficient width to provide properly for traffic that uses that section of highway of which such dam or bridge forms a part. The Commissioner of Highways shall maintain the highway surface on such sections of highway.

Code 1950, § 33-91; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-177; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-411. Raising or lowering floodgates.

The owner or occupier of a dam shall raise or lower the floodgates on such dam when there is an impending flood in order to reduce the level of the water in the pond, and when it comes to the attention of the Commissioner of Highways that this has not been done, or that the owner is unable to reach the spillway in order to do so, the Commissioner of Highways may perform this duty.

Code 1950, § 33-92; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-178; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-412. Reconstruction if dam is washed out.

If a dam is washed out and the owner refuses to replace the dam, the Commissioner of Highways, with or without the consent of such owner or occupier, may construct a highway across the dam, but in case the owner desires to replace the dam and use the pond, he shall be permitted to do so by paying to the Commissioner of Highways one-half of the cost and expenses of replacing the dam, up to a width of 12 feet at the top, and the difference between the cost, if any, of replacing the bridge normally required to carry the water of the stream and the cost of a bridge that includes floodgates and adequate spillway.

Code 1950, § 33-93; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-179; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-413. When larger spillway required.

In case the earthen portion of a dam has been washed away and it is determined by the Commissioner of Highways that the washout was caused by a spillway of insufficient opening to carry floodwater, the dam shall not be restored for the purpose of impounding water unless the owner or occupier agrees with the Commissioner of Highways to the construction of a spillway with adequate opening, conforming to plans and specifications of the Department. In the event that such construction is required, the Commissioner of Highways shall be responsible for such part of the cost as would be necessary to provide a bridge with sufficient opening to carry the floodwater of the stream, and the owner or occupier of the dam shall be required to pay the difference in cost, if any, of providing adequate floodgates and spillways in addition to the bridge.

Code 1950, § 33-94; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-180; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-414. Application to county roads.

Sections 33.2-409 through 33.2-413 shall also apply to dams, over which pass public roads that are not in the primary or secondary state highway system, and to the owners and occupiers thereof. As to any such dam and the owner or occupier thereof, the powers conferred and imposed upon the Commissioner of Highways in §§ 33.2-409 through 33.2-413 shall be vested in and imposed upon the governing body of the county in which such dam is located.

Code 1950, § 33-95; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-181; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 5. High-Occupancy Vehicle Lanes and High-Occupancy Toll Lanes.

§ 33.2-500. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"High-occupancy requirement" means the number of persons required to be traveling in a vehicle for the vehicle to use HOT lanes without the payment of a toll. Emergency vehicles, law-enforcement vehicles being used in HOT lanes in the performance of law-enforcement duties, which shall not include the use of such vehicles for commuting to and from the workplace or for any purpose other than responding to an emergency incident, patrolling HOT lanes pursuant to an agreement by a state agency with the HOT lanes operator, or the time-sensitive investigation, active surveillance, or actual pursuit of persons known or suspected to be engaged in or with knowledge of criminal activity, and mass transit vehicles and commuter buses shall meet the high-occupancy requirement for HOT lanes, regardless of the number of occupants in the vehicle.

"High-occupancy toll lanes" or "HOT lanes" means a highway or portion of a highway containing one or more travel lanes separated from other lanes that (i) has an electronic toll collection system; (ii) provides for free passage by vehicles that meet the high-occupancy requirement, including mass transit vehicles and commuter buses; and (iii) contains a photo-enforcement system for use in such electronic toll collection. HOT lanes shall not be a "toll facility" or "HOV lanes" for the purposes of any other provision of law or regulation.

"High-occupancy vehicle lanes" or "HOV lanes" means a highway or portion of a highway containing one or more travel lanes for the travel of high-occupancy vehicles or buses as designated pursuant to § 33.2-501.

"HOT lanes operator" means the operator of the facility containing HOT lanes, which may include the Department of Transportation or some other entity.

"Mass transit vehicles" and "commuter buses" means vehicles providing a scheduled transportation service to the general public. Such vehicles shall comprise nonprofit, publicly or privately owned or operated transportation services, programs, or systems that may be funded pursuant to § 58.1-638.

"Owner" means the registered owner of a vehicle on record with the Department of Motor Vehicles or with the equivalent agency in another state. "Owner" does not include a vehicle rental or vehicle leasing company.

"Photo-enforcement system" means a sensor installed in conjunction with a toll collection device to detect the presence of a vehicle that automatically produces one or more photographs, one or more microphotographs, a videotape, or other recorded images of each vehicle's license plate at the time it is detected by the toll collection device.

"Unauthorized vehicle" means a motor vehicle that is restricted from use of the HOT lanes pursuant to subdivision 4 a of § 33.2-503 or does not meet the high-occupancy requirement and indicates with its electronic toll collection device that it meets the applicable high-occupancy requirements.

2004, c. 783, § 33.1-56.1; 2008, cc. 167, 280; 2013, c. 195; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 73; 2016, c. 753.

§ 33.2-501. Designation of HOV lanes; use of such lanes; penalties.

A. In order to facilitate the rapid and orderly movement of traffic to and from urban areas during peak traffic periods, the Board may designate one or more lanes of any highway in the Interstate System, primary state highway system, or secondary state highway system as HOV lanes. When lanes have been so designated and have been appropriately marked with signs or other markers as the Board may prescribe, they shall be reserved during periods designated by the Board for the exclusive use of buses and high-occupancy vehicles. Any local governing body may also, with respect to highways under its exclusive jurisdiction, designate HOV lanes and impose and enforce restrictions on the use of such lanes. Any highway for which the locality receives highway maintenance funds pursuant to § 33.2-319 shall be deemed to be within the exclusive jurisdiction of the local governing body for the purposes of this section. HOV lanes shall be reserved for high-occupancy vehicles of a specified number of occupants as determined by the Board or, for HOV lanes designated by a local governing body, by that local governing body. However, no designation of any lane or lanes of any highway as HOV lanes shall apply to the use of any such lanes by:

1. Emergency vehicles such as firefighting vehicles and emergency medical services vehicles;

2. Law-enforcement vehicles;

3. Motorcycles;

4. a. Transit and commuter buses designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver;

b. Any vehicle operating under a certificate issued under § 46.2-2075, 46.2-2080, 46.2-2096, 46.2-2099.4, or 46.2-2099.44;

5. Vehicles of public utility companies operating in response to an emergency call;

6. Vehicles bearing clean special fuel vehicle license plates issued pursuant to § 46.2-749.3, provided such use is in compliance with federal law;

7. Taxicabs having two or more occupants, including the driver; or

8. (Contingent effective date) Any active duty military member in uniform who is utilizing Interstate 264 and Interstate 64 for the purposes of traveling to or from a military facility in the Hampton Roads Planning District.

In the Hampton Roads Planning District, HOV restrictions may be temporarily lifted and HOV lanes opened to use by all vehicles when restricting use of HOV lanes becomes impossible or undesirable and the temporary lifting of HOV limitations is indicated by signs along or above the affected portion of highway.

The Commissioner of Highways shall implement a program of the HOV facilities in the Hampton Roads Planning District beginning not later than May 1, 2000. This program shall include the temporary lifting of HOV restrictions and the opening of HOV lanes to all traffic when an incident resulting from nonrecurring causes within the general lanes occurs such that a lane of traffic is blocked or is expected to be blocked for 10 minutes or longer. The HOV restrictions for the facility shall be reinstated when the general lane is no longer blocked and is available for use.

The Commissioner of Highways shall maintain necessary records to evaluate the effects of such openings on the operation of the general lanes and the HOV lanes. This program will terminate if the Federal Highway Administration requires repayment of any federal highway construction funds because of the program's impact on the HOV facilities in Hampton Roads.

B. In designating any lane or lanes of any highway as HOV lanes, the Board or local governing body shall specify the hour or hours of each day of the week during which the lanes shall be so reserved, and the hour or hours shall be plainly posted at whatever intervals along the lanes the Board or local governing body deems appropriate. Any person driving a motor vehicle in a designated HOV lane in violation of this section is guilty of a traffic infraction, which shall not be a moving violation, and on conviction shall be fined $100. However, violations committed within the boundaries of Planning District 8 shall be punishable as follows:

1. For a first offense, by a fine of $125;

2. For a second offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $250;

3. For a third offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $500; and

4. For a fourth or subsequent offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $1,000.

Upon a conviction under this section, the court shall furnish to the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles in accordance with § 46.2-383 an abstract of the record of such conviction, which shall become a part of the person's driving record. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 46.2-492, no driver demerit points shall be assessed for any violation of this section, except that persons convicted of second, third, fourth, or subsequent violations within five years of a first offense committed in Planning District 8 shall be assessed three demerit points for each such violation.

C. In the prosecution of an offense, committed in the presence of a law-enforcement officer, of failure to obey a road sign restricting a highway, or portion thereof, to the use of high-occupancy vehicles, proof that the vehicle described in the HOV violation summons was operated in violation of this section, together with proof that the defendant was at the time of such violation the registered owner of the vehicle, shall constitute in evidence a rebuttable presumption that such registered owner of the vehicle was the person who committed the violation. Such presumption shall be rebutted if the registered owner of the vehicle testifies in open court under oath that he was not the operator of the vehicle at the time of the violation. A summons for a violation of this section may be executed in accordance with § 19.2-76.2. Such rebuttable presumption shall not arise when the registered owner of the vehicle is a rental or leasing company.

D. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 19.2-76, whenever a summons for a violation of this section is served in any locality, it may be executed by mailing by first-class mail a copy thereof to the address of the owner of the vehicle as shown on the records of the Department of Motor Vehicles. If the summoned person fails to appear on the date of return set out in the summons mailed pursuant to this section, the summons shall be executed in the manner set out in § 19.2-76.3.

No proceedings for contempt or arrest of a person summoned by mailing shall be instituted for his failure to appear on the return date of the summons.

E. Notwithstanding § 33.2-613, high-occupancy vehicles having three or more occupants (HOV-3) may be permitted to use the Omer L. Hirst-Adelard L. Brault Expressway (Dulles Toll Road) without paying a toll.

F. (Effective until January 1, 2020) Notwithstanding the contrary provisions of this section, the HOV-2 designation of Interstate 66 shall not be changed to HOV-3 or any more restrictive designation.

F. (Effective January 1, 2020) Notwithstanding the contrary provisions of this section, the following conditions shall be met before the HOV-2 designation of Interstate 66 can be changed to HOV-3 or any more restrictive designation:

1. The Department of Transportation shall publish a notice of its intent to change the existing designation and also immediately provide similar notice of its intent to all members of the General Assembly representing districts that touch or are directly impacted by traffic on Interstate 66.

2. The Department of Transportation shall hold public hearings in the corridor to receive comments from the public.

3. The Department of Transportation shall make a finding of the need for a change in such designation, based on public hearings and its internal data, and present this finding to the Board for approval.

4. The Board shall make written findings and a decision based upon the following criteria:

a. Is changing the HOV-2 designation to HOV-3 in the public interest?

b. Is there quantitative and qualitative evidence that supports the argument that HOV-3 will facilitate the flow of traffic on Interstate 66?

c. Is changing the HOV-2 designation beneficial to comply with the federal Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990?

d. Has the change in designation been screened and evaluated by the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority according to the process established pursuant to subdivision 2 of § 33.2-2500?

1973, c. 197, § 33.1-46.2; 1983, c. 339; 1988, c. 637; 1989, cc. 573, 744; 1993, cc. 82, 587; 1994, cc. 212, 426, 439; 1995, c. 55; 1996, cc. 34, 187, 191, 695, 921, 1037; 1997, c. 504; 1998, c. 321; 1999, cc. 914, 960; 2000, c. 322; 2002, cc. 89, 757; 2003, c. 324; 2004, c. 704; 2006, cc. 600, 873, 908; 2007, c. 317; 2008, c. 511; 2009, c. 676; 2010, cc. 111, 133, 390, 485; 2011, cc. 735, 881, 889; 2012, cc. 681, 743; 2014, c. 805; 2015, cc. 256, 502, 503; 2016, cc. 699, 715; 2019, c. 749.

§ 33.2-502. Designation of HOT lanes.

The Board may designate one or more lanes of any highway, including lanes that may previously have been designated HOV lanes under § 33.2-501, in the Interstate System, primary state highway system, or National Highway System, or any portion thereof, as HOT lanes. In making HOT lanes designations, the Board shall also specify the high-occupancy requirement and conditions for use of such HOT lanes or may authorize the Commissioner of Highways to make such determination consistent with the terms of a comprehensive agreement executed pursuant to § 33.2-1808. The high-occupancy requirement for a HOT lanes facility constructed or operated as a result of the Public-Private Transportation Act (§ 33.2-1800 et seq.) shall not be less than three.

2004, c. 783, § 33.1-56.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-503. HOT lanes enforcement.

Any person operating a motor vehicle on designated HOT lanes shall make arrangements with the HOT lanes operator for payment of the required toll prior to entering such HOT lanes. The operator of a vehicle who enters the HOT lanes in an unauthorized vehicle, in violation of the conditions for use of such HOT lanes established pursuant to § 33.2-502, without payment of the required toll or without having made arrangements with the HOT lanes operator for payment of the required toll shall have committed a violation of this section, which may be enforced in the following manner:

1. On a form prescribed by the Supreme Court, a summons for a violation of this section may be executed by a law-enforcement officer, when such violation is observed by such officer. The form shall contain the option for the operator of the vehicle to prepay the unpaid toll and all penalties, administrative fees, and costs.

2. a. A HOT lanes operator shall install and operate, or cause to be installed or operated, a photo-enforcement system at locations where tolls are collected for the use of such HOT lanes.

b. A summons for a violation of this section may be executed when such violation is evidenced by information obtained from a photo-enforcement system as defined in this chapter. A certificate, sworn to or affirmed by a technician employed or authorized by the HOT lanes operator, or a facsimile of such a certificate, based on inspection of photographs, microphotographs, videotapes, or other recorded images produced by a photo-enforcement system, shall be prima facie evidence of the facts contained therein. Any photographs, microphotographs, videotape, or other recorded images evidencing such a violation shall be available for inspection in any proceeding to adjudicate the liability for such violation under this subdivision 2. Any vehicle rental or vehicle leasing company, if named in a summons, shall be released as a party to the action if it provides to the HOT lanes operator a copy of the vehicle rental agreement or lease or an affidavit identifying the renter or lessee prior to the date of hearing set forth in the summons. Upon receipt of such rental agreement, lease, or affidavit, a summons shall be issued for the renter or lessee identified therein. Release of this information shall not be deemed a violation of any provision of the Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act (§ 2.2-3800 et seq.) or the Insurance Information and Privacy Protection Act (§ 38.2-600 et seq.).

c. On a form prescribed by the Supreme Court, a summons issued under this subdivision 2 may be executed as provided in § 19.2-76.2. Such form shall contain the option for the owner or operator to prepay the unpaid toll and all penalties, administrative fees, and costs. A summons for a violation of this section may set forth multiple violations occurring within one jurisdiction. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 19.2-76, a summons for a violation of this section may be executed by mailing by first-class mail a copy thereof to the address of the owner or, if the owner has named and provided a valid address for the operator of the vehicle at the time of the violation in an affidavit executed pursuant to subdivision e, such named operator of the vehicle. Such summons shall be signed either originally or by electronic signature. If the summoned person fails to appear on the date of return set out in the summons mailed pursuant to this section, the summons shall be executed in the manner set out in § 19.2-76.3.

d. No summons may be issued by a HOT lanes operator for a violation of this section unless the HOT lanes operator can demonstrate that (i) there was an attempt to collect the unpaid tolls and applicable administrative fees through debt collection not less than 30 days prior to issuance of the summons and (ii) 120 days have elapsed since the unpaid toll or, in a summons for multiple violations, 120 days have elapsed since the most recent unpaid toll noticed on the summons. For purposes of this subdivision, "debt collection" means the collection of unpaid tolls and applicable administrative fees by (a) retention of a third-party debt collector or (b) collection practices undertaken by employees of a HOT lanes operator that are materially similar to a third-party debt collector.

e. The owner of such vehicle shall be given reasonable notice by way of a summons as provided in this subdivision 2 that his vehicle had been used in violation of this section, and such owner shall be given notice of the time and place of the hearing and notice of the civil penalty and costs for such offense.

It shall be prima facie evidence that the vehicle described in the summons issued pursuant to subdivision 2 was operated in violation of this section. Records obtained from the Department of Motor Vehicles pursuant to § 33.2-504 and certified in accordance with § 46.2-215 or from the equivalent agency in another state and certified as true and correct copies by the head of such agency or his designee identifying the owner of such vehicle shall give rise to a rebuttable presumption that the owner of the vehicle is the person named in the summons.

Upon the filing of an affidavit with the court at least 14 days prior to the hearing date by the owner of the vehicle stating that he was not the operator of the vehicle on the date of the violation and providing the legal name and address of the operator of the vehicle at the time of the violation, a summons will also be issued to the alleged operator of the vehicle at the time of the offense. The affidavit shall constitute prima facie evidence that the person named in the affidavit was driving the vehicle at all the relevant times relating to the matter named in the affidavit.

If the owner of the vehicle produces a certified copy of a police report showing that the vehicle had been reported to the police as stolen prior to the time of the alleged offense and remained stolen at the time of the alleged offense, then the court shall dismiss the summons issued to the owner of the vehicle.

3. a. The HOT lanes operator may impose and collect an administrative fee in addition to the unpaid toll so as to recover the expenses of collecting the unpaid toll, which administrative fee shall be reasonably related to the actual cost of collecting the unpaid toll and not exceed $100 per violation. The operator of the vehicle shall pay the unpaid tolls and any administrative fee detailed in a notice or invoice issued by a HOT lanes operator. If paid within 60 days of notification, the administrative fee shall not exceed $25. The HOT lanes operator shall notify the owner of the vehicle of any unpaid tolls and administrative fees by mailing an invoice pursuant to § 46.2-819.6.

b. Upon a finding by a court of competent jurisdiction that the operator of the vehicle observed by a law-enforcement officer under subdivision 1 or the vehicle described in the summons for a violation issued pursuant to evidence obtained by a photo-enforcement system under subdivision 2 was in violation of this section, the court shall impose a civil penalty upon the operator of such vehicle issued a summons under subdivision 1, or upon the operator or owner of such vehicle issued a summons under subdivision 2, payable to the HOT lanes operator as follows: for a first offense, $50; for a second offense, $100; for a third offense within a period of two years of the second offense, $250; and for a fourth and subsequent offense within a period of three years of the second offense, $500, together with, in each case, the unpaid toll, all accrued administrative fees imposed by the HOT lanes operator as authorized by this section, and applicable court costs. The court shall remand penalties, the unpaid toll, and administrative fees assessed for violation of this section to the treasurer or director of finance of the county or city in which the violation occurred for payment to the HOT lanes operator for expenses associated with operation of the HOT lanes and payments against any bonds or other liens issued as a result of the construction of the HOT lanes. No person shall be subject to prosecution under both subdivisions 1 and 2 for actions arising out of the same transaction or occurrence.

c. Notwithstanding subdivisions a and b, for a first conviction of an operator or owner of a vehicle under this section, the total amount for the first conviction shall not exceed $2,200, including civil penalties and administrative fees regardless of the total number of offenses the operator or owner of a vehicle is convicted of on that date.

d. Upon a finding by a court that a resident of the Commonwealth has violated this section, in the event such person fails to pay the required penalties, fees, and costs, the court shall notify the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles, who shall suspend all of the registration certificates and license plates issued for any motor vehicles registered solely in the name of such person and shall not issue any registration certificate or license plate for any other vehicle that such person seeks to register solely in his name until the court has notified the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles that such penalties, fees, and costs have been paid. Upon a finding by a court that a nonresident of the Commonwealth has violated this section, in the event that such person fails to pay the required penalties, fees, and costs, the court shall notify the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles, who shall, when the vehicle is registered in a state with which the Commonwealth has entered into an agreement to enforce tolling violations pursuant to § 46.2-819.9, provide to the entity authorized to issue vehicle registration certificates or license plates in the state in which the vehicle is registered sufficient evidence of the court's finding to take action against the vehicle registration certificate or license plates in accordance with the terms of the agreement, until the court has notified the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles that such penalties, fees, and costs have been paid. Upon receipt of such notification from the court, the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles shall notify the state where the vehicle is registered of such payment. The HOT lanes operator and the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles may enter into an agreement whereby the HOT lanes operator may reimburse the Department of Motor Vehicles for its reasonable costs to develop, implement, and maintain this enforcement mechanism, and that specifies that the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles shall have an obligation to suspend such registration certificates or to provide notice to such entities in other states so long as the HOT lanes operator makes the required reimbursements in a timely manner in accordance with the agreement.

e. An action brought under subdivision 1 or 2 shall be commenced within two years of the commission of the offense and shall be considered a traffic infraction. Except as provided in subdivisions 4 and 5, imposition of a civil penalty pursuant to this section shall not be deemed a conviction as an operator of a motor vehicle under Title 46.2 and shall not be made part of the driving record of the person upon whom such civil penalty is imposed, nor shall it be used for insurance purposes in the provision of motor vehicle insurance coverage. The provisions of § 46.2-395 shall not be applicable to any civil penalty, fee, unpaid toll, fine, or cost imposed or ordered paid under this section for a violation of subdivision 1 or 2.

4. a. The HOT lanes operator may restrict the usage of the HOT lanes to designated vehicle classifications pursuant to an interim or final comprehensive agreement executed pursuant to § 33.2-1808 or 33.2-1809. Notice of any such vehicle classification restrictions shall be provided through the placement of signs or other markers prior to and at all HOT lanes entrances.

b. Any person driving an unauthorized vehicle on the designated HOT lanes is guilty of a traffic infraction, which shall not be a moving violation, and shall be punishable as follows: for a first offense, by a fine of $125; for a second offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $250; for a third offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $500; and for a fourth and subsequent offense within a period of five years from a first offense, by a fine of $1,000. No person shall be subject to prosecution under both this subdivision and subdivision 1 or 2 for actions arising out of the same transaction or occurrence.

Upon a conviction under this subdivision, the court shall furnish to the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles, in accordance with § 46.2-383, an abstract of the record of such conviction, which shall become a part of the person's driving record. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 46.2-492, no driver demerit points shall be assessed for any violation of this subdivision, except that persons convicted of a second, third, fourth, or subsequent violation within five years of a first offense shall be assessed three demerit points for each such violation.

5. The operator of a vehicle who enters the HOT lanes by crossing through any barrier, buffer, or other area separating the HOT lanes from other lanes of travel is guilty of a violation of § 46.2-852, unless the vehicle is a state or local law-enforcement vehicle, firefighting truck, or emergency medical services vehicle used in the performance of its official duties. No person shall be subject to prosecution both under this subdivision and under subdivision 1, 2, or 4 for actions arising out of the same transaction or occurrence.

Upon a conviction under this subdivision, the court shall furnish to the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles in accordance with § 46.2-383 an abstract of the record of such conviction, which shall become a part of the convicted person's driving record.

6. No person shall be subject to prosecution both under this section and under § 33.2-501, 46.2-819, or 46.2-819.1 for actions arising out of the same transaction or occurrence.

7. Any action under this section shall be brought in the general district court of the county or city in which the violation occurred.

2004, c. 783, § 33.1-56.3; 2008, cc. 167, 280; 2013, cc. 85, 101; 2014, c. 805; 2015, cc. 502, 503; 2016, c. 753.

§ 33.2-504. Release of personal information to or by HOT lanes operators; penalty.

A. The HOT lanes operator may enter into an agreement with the Department of Motor Vehicles, in accordance with the provisions of subdivision B 21 of § 46.2-208, to obtain vehicle owner information regarding the owners of vehicles that use HOT lanes and with the Department of Transportation to obtain any information that is necessary to conduct electronic toll collection and otherwise operate HOT lanes. Such agreement may include any information that may be obtained by the Department of Motor Vehicles in accordance with any agreement entered into pursuant to § 46.2-819.9. No HOT lanes operator shall disclose or release any personal information received from the Department of Motor Vehicles or the Department of Transportation to any third party, except in the issuance of a summons and institution of court proceedings in accordance with § 33.2-503. Information in the possession of a HOT lanes operator under this section shall be exempt from disclosure under the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.).

B. Information collected by a photo-enforcement system shall be limited exclusively to that information that is necessary for the collection of unpaid tolls. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, all photographs, microphotographs, electronic images, or other data collected by a photo-enforcement system shall be used exclusively for the collection of unpaid tolls and shall not be (i) open to the public; (ii) sold or used for sales, solicitation, or marketing purposes; (iii) disclosed to any other entity except as may be necessary for the collection of unpaid tolls or to a vehicle owner or operator as part of a challenge to the imposition of a toll; or (iv) used in a court in a pending action or proceeding unless the action or proceeding relates to a violation of § 33.2-503 or upon order from a court of competent jurisdiction. Information collected under this section shall be purged and not retained later than 30 days after the collection and reconciliation of any unpaid tolls, administrative fees, or civil penalties. Any entity operating a photo-enforcement system shall annually certify compliance with this section and make all records pertaining to such system available for inspection and audit by the Commissioner of Highways or the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles or their designee. Any violation of this subsection constitutes a Class 1 misdemeanor. In addition to any fines or other penalties provided for by law, any money or other thing of value obtained as a result of a violation of this section shall be forfeited to the Commonwealth.

2004, c. 783, § 33.1-56.4; 2006, c. 859; 2014, c. 805; 2016, c. 753.

§ 33.2-505. Exclusion of HOT lanes from certain other laws.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the provisions of §§ 22.1-187, 33.2-501, 33.2-613, 46.2-819, and 46.2-819.1 shall not apply to HOT lanes.

2004, c. 783, § 33.1-56.5; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 6. Ferries and Toll Facilities.

§ 33.2-600. Acquisition or establishment of ferries.

The Board may acquire by purchase, condemnation, or gift any ferry within the Commonwealth that forms a connecting link in a state highway and may purchase all equipment and other things necessary for the establishment of new ferries to become connecting links in the primary or secondary state highway system, whenever it shall determine such action to be advisable and expedient. The Board may expend from state highway construction funds of the highway construction district where the ferries are located and are under the Board's control at any time such sums as may be necessary to acquire or establish, maintain, and operate any such ferry.

The Board may operate such ferry either as a free or toll ferry and may establish a toll for the use of such ferry at such rates as are deemed by the Board to be reasonable and proper without regulation by any other governmental body.

Code 1950, § 33-209; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-254; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-601. Ferry across Corrotoman River.

The public free ferry across the Corrotoman River, in the County of Lancaster, authorized by Chapter 156 of the Acts of Assembly of 1847, shall be kept according to such act, except as otherwise provided in this section. The Circuit Court of Lancaster may have the contract for keeping the same let to the lowest bidder for a period of five years, and the bonds thereby directed shall be to the County of Lancaster. Furthermore, the ferry shall cross from Merry Point to the upper side of the wharf and canning factory at Ottoman wharf. However, the circuit court of the county shall have the right, upon the application of the board of supervisors, to discontinue the ferry if it appears that public necessity therefor no longer exists. No such application shall be made unless and until notice is given by (i) publication once a week for two successive weeks in a newspaper published in the county or having general circulation therein and (ii) posting copies of the notice at the front door of the courthouse of the county and at both landings of the ferry. Such notice shall be posted and the first newspaper publication made at least 30 days before the day on which the application will be made to the court.

Code 1950, § 33-171; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-247; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-602. Toll bridges; when privilege ceases.

When an act is passed to authorize the erection of a toll bridge, if the work is not commenced within one year from the passage of such act or is not completed within two years after such commencement or if, after its completion, there is an abandonment of the toll bridge or a failure for three successive years to keep it in good order, the privileges granted by the act shall cease.

Code 1950, § 33-215; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-255; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-603. Toll bridges not to obstruct navigation or fish.

Every toll bridge shall be made so as not to obstruct the passage of fish or the navigation of the watercourse over which it is erected.

Code 1950, § 33-216; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-256; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-604. How right to demand tolls ascertained and rates fixed or changed.

Tolls shall be received for passing a bridge only after it appears to the circuit court of the county where the bridge is located that the bridge is completed according to the act authorizing it. The court shall ascertain whether it is so completed by appointing three disinterested freeholders to view it. If they report in writing that it is so completed and their report is confirmed by the court, the person authorized to erect it, or his heirs or assigns, may then demand and receive tolls at the rates fixed by such act from persons or things passing over the bridge. If no rates are fixed, then he, or his heirs or assigns, may receive tolls at such rates as may be fixed by law. If the toll rates are specified in such act they may be changed by law, unless such act otherwise expressly provides.

Code 1950, § 33-217; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-257; 1995, c. 647; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-605. Special police officers in connection with toll bridges.

A. The circuit court of any county in which there is a toll bridge or its approaches, or the circuit court of any county in which lies any part of any toll bridge or bridges or their approaches belonging to the same proprietor, but which toll bridge or bridges or their approaches lie in more than one county, may, upon the application of the proprietor, appoint any employee of such proprietor, employed in the control or operation of such toll bridge or bridges and approaches, a special police officer. Such special police officer may exercise all the powers and duties imposed and conferred upon sheriffs in the Commonwealth, in criminal matters, upon any such toll bridge or bridges and their approaches. Such power shall extend throughout the Commonwealth when such special police officer is actually in pursuit of a person accused of crime or acting under authority of a warrant duly issued for the arrest of a person charged with a crime. However, no special policeman appointed under this section whose duties as such special policeman are merely incidental to such private employment shall be deemed to be an employee of the Commonwealth or county or counties within which such toll bridges and their approaches lie, within the meaning of the Virginia Workers' Compensation Act (§ 65.2-100 et seq.).

B. Before any such appointment is made, the court shall be satisfied that such person has been a bona fide resident of the Commonwealth for more than one year immediately preceding such appointment and is of good moral character. Before any such person shall be permitted to discharge any of the duties of such special policeman, he shall take the oath required by law and shall give a bond payable to the Commonwealth in the penalty of not less than $500, conditioned for the faithful discharge of his official duties.

C. No salary shall be paid to any special police officer appointed under subsection A by the Commonwealth or county, or counties, in which such properties lie; nor shall he receive any fees for making any arrest, executing any warrant, summoning a witness, or carrying a person to or from jail.

Code 1950, §§ 33-218, 33-219, 33-220; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-258, 33.1-259, 33.1-260; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-606. Permission required to erect or maintain toll bridges over navigable water.

No toll bridge erected after March 19, 1928, shall be constructed, maintained, or operated across, in, or over any navigable waters in or of the Commonwealth, anything in the charter of any company to the contrary notwithstanding, unless a permit is first obtained from the Board. The Board may grant or withhold such permit or prescribe its terms and conditions, as it may deem for the best interest of the Commonwealth, except so far as such terms and conditions are provided for in this chapter.

Code 1950, § 33-221; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-261; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-607. Approval of plans by Board; inspection; costs.

Detailed plans, estimates, and specifications shall be submitted to the Board for approval before construction is commenced on a toll bridge or approaches under a permit granted under § 33.2-606. No such toll bridge shall be constructed until such plans, estimates, and specifications are approved by the Board. Access to such work shall be granted to the Board, the Commissioner of Highways, and authorized representatives of either at all times during construction. The permittee shall keep accurate records of the cost of such toll bridge and approaches and real and personal property used in the operation thereof and of all replacements and repairs and shall submit a copy to the Board.

Code 1950, § 33-222; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-262; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-608. Toll bridges may be purchased by Commonwealth.

In addition to the power of eminent domain as provided by law for highways in the primary state highway system, the Commonwealth, acting through the Commissioner of Highways, may purchase any such toll bridge and the approaches thereto with the real estate and tangible personal property necessary for their proper operation, at such time as may be specified in the permit granted for such toll bridge, or at the expiration of any two-year period after such time, all at a price equal to the original cost, to be determined as provided in this section, less depreciation.

In order to exercise the right of the Commonwealth to purchase and take over any such toll bridge and approaches and real estate and tangible personal property, the Commonwealth, through the Commissioner of Highways, shall give to the permittee, or its successor in title of record to such toll bridge and other property, not less than two months' notice of its intention to do so and specify the date on which the conveyance will be required. Title to such toll bridge and approaches and property shall be vested in the Commonwealth free of lien at the time set out in such notice and upon the payment or offer of the purchase price determined in accordance with §§ 33.2-602 through 33.2-610, to such permittee or successor in title of record to such toll bridge and other property, or to the trustee or trustees, or mortgagor or mortgagees in any deed of trust or mortgage on such property, or to the lien creditor or creditors, as their interest may appear of record.

The original cost of such toll bridge and approaches and real estate and tangible personal property shall be determined by the Commissioner of Highways. The original cost shall include the actual cost and an additional amount equal to interest at the rate of six percent on the amount actually invested by such permittee, or successor in title of record, in such property, or in hand for investment therein, during the period of construction. "Actual costs" includes the cost of improvements; financing charges; the cost of traffic estimate and of engineering and legal expenses, plans, specifications, and surveys; estimates of cost and of revenue; other expenses necessary or incident to determining the feasibility or practicability of the enterprise; administrative expenses; and such other expenses as may be necessary or incident to the financing of the project and the placing of the project in operation. The Commissioner of Highways shall determine the depreciation and the reasonableness of each item of actual cost.

Code 1950, § 33-224; 1956, c. 138; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-264; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-609. Conveyance of toll bridge by Commonwealth.

In the event a toll bridge, at the time it is purchased by the Commonwealth under the provisions of §§ 33.2-602 through 33.2-610, is not on the line of a highway then in one of the systems of state highways, the Commissioner of Highways may convey such toll bridge and approaches and other property to such county or counties in which it may be in whole or in part located, upon the payment by such county or counties of the amount paid by the Commonwealth for such toll bridge and approaches and other property, with interest on such amount at six percent per year from the time of such payment by the Commonwealth. The conveyance shall be executed in the name and on behalf of the Commonwealth by the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-225; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-265; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-610. Sections 33.2-606 through 33.2-609 not applicable to certain toll bridges.

Nothing contained in §§ 33.2-606 through 33.2-609 shall be construed to apply to any bridge existing or under construction on March 20, 1928, or to bridges constructed within or adjacent to towns or cities having a population of more than 3,500.

Code 1950, § 33-226; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-266; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-611. Tolls may vary to encourage travel during off-peak hours.

A. In order to provide an incentive for motorists to travel at off-peak hours, and in accordance with federal requirements, wherever a toll is imposed and collected by the Department or such other entity as may be responsible for imposing or collecting such toll, the amount of such toll may vary according to the time of day, day of the week, traffic volume, vehicle speed, vehicle type, similar variables, or combinations thereof. The amount of such toll and the time of day when such toll changes shall be as fixed and revised by the Board or such other entity as may be responsible for fixing or revising the amount of such toll, provided, however, that any such variation shall be reasonably calculated to minimize the reduction in toll revenue generated by such toll.

B. 1. Beginning July 1, 2008, every agency of the Commonwealth or any political subdivision or instrumentality thereof having control of or day-to-day responsibility for the operation of any toll facility in the Commonwealth shall take all necessary actions to ensure that every newly constructed toll facility under its control is capable of fully automated electronic operation, employing technologies and procedures that permit the collection of tolls from users of the facility, to the extent possible, without impeding the traffic flow of the facility. An entity operating a toll facility that substantially upgrades its equipment or substantially renovates its facility after July 1, 2008, shall comply with the provisions of this subsection. The provisions of this section shall also apply to any nongovernmental or quasigovernmental entity operating a toll facility under a comprehensive agreement entered into, pursuant to the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995 (§ 33.2-1800 et seq.), on or after January 1, 2008. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit a toll facility from retaining means of nonautomated toll collection in some lanes of the facility.

2. For toll facilities within the territory embraced by the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, the provisions of subdivision 1 apply to all toll facilities, regardless of whether or not they are newly constructed or substantially upgraded.

2004, c. 1003, § 33.1-223.2:12; 2007, c. 896; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-612. Unlawful for Department of Transportation to permit free passage over certain toll bridges and ferries; exceptions.

Except for those persons exempted from tolls under § 33.2-613, it shall be unlawful for the Department or any employee thereof to give or permit free passage over any toll bridge, tunnel, or ferry that has been secured through the issuance of revenue bonds and which bonds are payable from the revenues of such project. Every vehicle shall pay the same toll as others similarly situated. Except as provided in § 33.2-613, the provisions of this section shall apply to vehicles and employees of the state government, local governments, or other political subdivisions and to vehicles and persons of all other categories and descriptions, public, private, eleemosynary, or otherwise.

Code 1950, § 33-173.1; 1950, p. 458; 1954, c. 576; 1968, c. 170; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-251; 1973, c. 215; 1981, c. 417; 1983, c. 617; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-613. Free use of toll facilities by certain state officers and employees; penalties.

A. Upon presentation of a toll pass issued pursuant to regulations promulgated by the Board, the following persons may use all toll bridges, toll ferries, toll tunnels, and toll roads in the Commonwealth without the payment of toll while in the performance of their official duties:

1. The Commissioner of Highways;

2. Members of the Commonwealth Transportation Board;

3. Employees of the Department of Transportation;

4. The Superintendent of the Department of State Police;

5. Officers and employees of the Department of State Police;

6. Members of the Board of Directors of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority;

7. Employees of the regulatory and hearings divisions of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority and special agents of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority;

8. The Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles;

9. Employees of the Department of Motor Vehicles;

10. Local police officers;

11. Sheriffs and their deputies;

12. Regional jail officials;

13. Animal wardens;

14. The Director and officers of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries;

15. Persons operating firefighting equipment and emergency medical services vehicles as defined in § 32.1-111.1;

16. Operators of school buses being used to transport pupils to or from schools;

17. Operators of (i) commuter buses having a capacity of 20 or more passengers, including the driver, and used to regularly transport workers to and from their places of employment and (ii) public transit buses;

18. Employees of the Department of Rail and Public Transportation;

19. Employees of any transportation facility created pursuant to the Virginia Highway Corporation Act of 1988; and

20. Law-enforcement officers of the Virginia Marine Resources Commission.

B. Notwithstanding the provision of subsection A requiring presentation of a toll pass for toll-free use of such facilities, in cases of emergency and circumstances of concern for public safety on the highways of the Commonwealth, the Department of Transportation shall, in order to alleviate an actual or potential threat or risk to the public's safety, facilitate the flow of traffic on or within the vicinity of the toll facility by permitting the temporary suspension of toll collection operations on its facilities.

1. The assessment of the threat to public safety shall be performed and the decision temporarily to suspend toll collection operations shall be made by the Commissioner of Highways or his designee.

2. Major incidents that may require the temporary suspension of toll collection operations shall include (i) natural disasters, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, and floods; (ii) accidental releases of hazardous materials, such as chemical spills; (iii) major traffic accidents, such as multivehicle collisions; and (iv) other incidents deemed to present a risk to public safety. Any mandatory evacuation during a state of emergency as defined in § 44-146.16 shall require the temporary suspension of toll collection operations in affected evacuation zones on routes designated as mass evacuation routes. The Commissioner of Highways shall reinstate toll collection when the mandatory evacuation period ends.

3. In any judicial proceeding in which a person is found to be criminally responsible or civilly liable for any incident resulting in the suspension of toll collections as provided in this subsection, the court may assess against the person an amount equal to lost toll revenue as a part of the costs of the proceeding and order that such amount, not to exceed $2,000 for any individual incident, be paid to the Department of Transportation for deposit into the toll road fund.

C. Any tollgate keeper who refuses to permit the persons listed in subsection A to use any toll bridge, toll ferry, toll tunnel, or toll road upon presentation of such a toll pass is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $50 and not less than $2.50. Any person other than those listed in subsection A who exhibits any such toll pass for the purpose of using any toll bridge, toll ferry, toll tunnel, or toll road is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

D. Any vehicle operated by the holder of a valid driver's license issued by the Commonwealth or any other state shall be allowed free use of all toll bridges, toll roads, and other toll facilities in the Commonwealth if:

1. The vehicle is specially equipped to permit its operation by a handicapped person;

2. The driver of the vehicle has been certified, either by a physician licensed by the Commonwealth or any other state or by the Adjudication Office of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, as being severely physically disabled and having permanent upper limb mobility or dexterity impairments that substantially impair his ability to deposit coins in toll baskets;

3. The driver has applied for and received from the Department of Transportation a vehicle window sticker identifying him as eligible for such free passage; and

4. Such identifying window sticker is properly displayed on the vehicle.

A copy of this subsection shall be posted at all toll bridges, toll roads, and other toll facilities in the Commonwealth. The Department of Transportation shall provide envelopes for payments of tolls by those persons exempted from tolls pursuant to this subsection and shall accept any payments made by such persons.

E. Nothing contained in this section or in § 33.2-612 or 33.2-1718 shall operate to affect the provisions of § 22.1-187.

F. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections A, B, and C, only the following persons may use the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, facilities of the Richmond Metropolitan Transportation Authority, or facilities of an operator authorized to operate a toll facility pursuant to the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995 (§ 33.2-1800 et seq.) without the payment of toll when necessary and incidental to the conduct of official business:

1. The Commissioner of Highways;

2. Members of the Commonwealth Transportation Board;

3. Employees of the Department of Transportation;

4. The Superintendent of the Department of State Police;

5. Officers and employees of the Department of State Police;

6. The Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles;

7. Employees of the Department of Motor Vehicles; and

8. Sheriffs and deputy sheriffs.

However, in the event of a mandatory evacuation and suspension of tolls pursuant to subdivision B 2, the Commissioner of Highways or his designee shall order the temporary suspension of toll collection operations on facilities of all operators authorized to operate a toll facility pursuant to the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995 (§ 33.2-1800 et seq.) that has been designated as a mass evacuation route in affected evacuation zones, to the extent such order is necessary to facilitate evacuation and is consistent with the terms of the applicable comprehensive agreement between the operator and the Department. The Commissioner of Highways shall authorize the reinstatement of toll collections suspended pursuant to this subsection when the mandatory evacuation period ends or upon the reinstatement of toll collections on other tolled facilities in the same affected area, whichever occurs first.

G. Any vehicle operated by a quadriplegic driver shall be allowed free use of all toll facilities in Virginia controlled by the Richmond Metropolitan Transportation Authority, pursuant to the requirements of subdivisions D 1 through 4.

H. Vehicles transporting two or more persons, including the driver, may be permitted toll-free use of the Dulles Toll Road during rush hours by the Board; however, notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision B 1 of § 56-543, such vehicles shall not be permitted toll-free use of a roadway as defined pursuant to the Virginia Highway Corporation Act of 1988 (§ 56-535 et seq.).

Code 1950, § 33-11; 1952, c. 572; 1970, cc. 322, 415, § 33.1-252; 1973, c. 215; 1981, c. 417; 1983, c. 617; 1984, cc. 508, 543, 778; 1990, cc. 505, 509, 613; 1992, c. 266; 1993, c. 866; 1994, cc. 65, 771, 874, 927; 1995, c. 572; 1996, c. 138; 1998, c. 565; 2004, c. 655; 2005, c. 298; 2006, c. 859; 2014, cc. 469, 805; 2015, cc. 38, 256, 502, 503, 730; 2019, cc. 269, 547.

§ 33.2-614. Disclosure of certain information relating to use of toll facilities; injunctive relief; attorney fees.

A. Neither the Department nor any other operator of any toll bridge, toll road, or other toll facility nor any employee or contractor with the Department or other toll facility operator shall disclose any information derived from an automated electronic toll collection system about the time, date, or frequency of use or nonuse of any such facility by any individually identified motor vehicle except when ordered to do so by a court of competent jurisdiction. The provisions of this section shall not apply to information supplied (i) to any person who is a participant in the electronic toll collection system, when such information is limited to vehicles owned or leased by such person; (ii) to the issuer of any credit card or debit card or other third party vendor when such information is necessary for collecting the toll and ensuring the accuracy of such billing by the operator; (iii) for statistical or research purposes, when such information contains no data attributable to individual vehicles or individual participants; or (iv) to federal, state, and local law enforcement, when such information is required in the course of an investigation where time is of the essence in preserving and protecting human life or public safety.

B. Any aggrieved person may institute a proceeding for injunction or mandamus against any person, governmental agency, or other entity that has engaged, is engaged, or is about to engage in any acts or practices in violation of the provisions of this section. The proceeding shall be brought in the circuit court of any county or city wherein the person, governmental agency, or other entity made defendant resides or has a place of business. In the case of any successful proceeding by an aggrieved party, the person, governmental agency, or other entity enjoined or made subject to a writ of mandamus by the court shall be liable for the costs of the action together with reasonable attorney fees as determined by the court.

2004, c. 665, § 33.1-252.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-615. Electronic notification of unpaid tolls.

For the purpose of electronic notification of unpaid tolls, the Department shall request email addresses and personal cell phone numbers from all holders of an account for an electronic toll collection device that is the property of the Commonwealth.

The Department shall electronically notify a holder of an account for an electronic toll collection device that is the property of the Commonwealth of each unpaid toll, within 108 hours of such unpaid toll, (i) when such device is detected by the toll operator or (ii) when such device is not detected by the toll operator but whose vehicle is associated with such account. The Department shall provide a second electronic notification on the eighth day after the unpaid toll. Such notification requirements shall only apply to accounts where the account holder has provided the Department with an email address or cell phone number. Such notification shall be for informational purposes only and the notice, or lack thereof, shall not alter or amend the requirement that an owner or operator pay all required tolls, fines, penalties, and fees.

All toll operators in the Commonwealth shall notify the Department of an unpaid toll on a facility it operates related to an account for an electronic toll collection device that is the property of the Commonwealth within 96 hours of such violation.

2016, c. 753.

§ 33.2-616. Electronic toll collection device; DRIVE SMART Virginia Education Fund contribution.

A. The Department shall establish a method by which holders of an account for an electronic toll collection device that is the property of the Commonwealth may opt to make a voluntary contribution to the DRIVE SMART Virginia Education Fund through electronic means.

B. There is hereby created in the state treasury a special nonreverting fund to be known as the DRIVE SMART Virginia Education Fund, referred to in this section as "the Fund." DRIVE SMART Virginia is a nonprofit organization exempt from taxation under § 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Fund shall be established on the books of the Comptroller. All funds collected pursuant to subsection A shall be paid into the state treasury and credited to the Fund. Interest earned on moneys in the Fund shall remain in the Fund and be credited to it. Any moneys remaining in the Fund, including interest thereon, at the end of each fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund but shall remain in the Fund. Moneys in the Fund, less costs of administration incurred and withheld by the Department, shall be used solely for the purposes of supporting educational projects in the Commonwealth through DRIVE SMART Virginia's existing network of education, corporate, and community partners in an effort to improve behavior, raise awareness, and educate members of the general public in workplaces, schools, municipalities, and other locations on issues related to safe driving. Such issues shall include work zone safety, sharing the road with bicyclists and pedestrians, teen driver safety, occupant protection, designated driving, distracted road users, and other issues as needed. DRIVE SMART Virginia shall submit an annual report to the Secretary regarding its use of disbursements from the Fund. Expenditures and disbursements from the Fund shall be made by the State Treasurer on warrants issued by the Comptroller upon written request signed by the Secretary.

2017, c. 533.

Chapter 7. Local Authority Over Highways.

Article 1. General Provisions.

§ 33.2-700. Transfer of highways, etc., from secondary state highway system to local authorities.

Whenever any town has a population of more than 3,500 inhabitants, all the streets, highways, causeways, bridges, landings, and wharves in such town that were incorporated within the secondary state highway system shall be eliminated from such system and the control and jurisdiction over them shall be vested in the local authorities. This section shall in no way affect the rights of such towns to receive the benefits provided elsewhere in this title.

Code 1950, § 33-137; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-224; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-701. Levies.

For the purpose of this section, "district" means a magisterial, sanitary, or other special district created by the governing body of a county for the levy of road taxes.

The governing bodies of the counties shall not make any levy of county or district road taxes or contract any further indebtedness for the construction, maintenance, or improvement of highways; however, the governing bodies of the counties shall continue to make county or district levies, as the case may be, upon all real and personal property subject to local taxation, in such county or magisterial district, and not embraced within the corporate limits of any town that maintains its own streets and is exempt from county and district road taxes unless the citizens of such towns voted on the question of issuing county or district road bonds, sufficient only to provide for the payment of any bonded or other indebtedness and for the interest contracted thereon that may be outstanding as an obligation of any county or district contracted for road purposes or for the sinking fund for the retirement of any bonded indebtedness established for county or district road purposes.

Code 1950, § 33-138; 1964, c. 376; 1968, c. 368; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-225; 2007, c. 813; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-702. Gifts received by counties for construction, maintenance, etc., of secondary highways.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-701 or any other provisions of law to the contrary, the governing body of any county may accept gifts of money, property, or services to be utilized for the construction, maintenance, and improvement of the secondary state highway system in such county, in conformity with specifications of and in cooperation with the Department, provided that such gift resources may be matched in value by appropriations from the county's general funds. The allocation of such donated and appropriated resources to the secondary highways shall be made by the governing body of the county, after consultation with the Department, to be used by the Department in accordance with the wishes of the governing body of such county.

1976, c. 63, § 33.1-225.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-703. Funds for highways not in secondary state highway system.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-701 or 33.2-706, the governing body of any county under the urban county executive form of government may expend funds on minor improvements and maintenance of highways not within the secondary state highway system, provided such highways are open for public use. A highway shall be determined to be open for public use by applying the same standards set forth in § 33.2-105 or by final order of a court of competent jurisdiction on or before January 1, 1978, except that in order to be eligible for funds under this section such highways need not be 30 feet wide but shall not be less than 15 feet wide. The maximum amount of mileage to be maintained under this section shall not exceed 30 miles.

1978, c. 43, § 33.1-225.3; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-704. Agreements between localities for construction and operation of toll facilities.

The governing bodies of adjacent localities may enter into agreements providing for the construction and operation of highways, bridges, and ferries within their boundaries and for the imposition and collection of tolls for the use of such facilities. Such tolls may be in whatever amount, subject to whatever conditions, and expended for whatever purposes provided for in such agreements. Such agreements shall provide for the design, land acquisition, or construction of primary or secondary highway projects that have been included in the six-year plan pursuant to § 33.2-331, or in the case of a primary highway, an approved project included in the six-year improvement program of the Board. Such agreements shall specify relevant procedures and responsibilities concerning the design, right-of-way acquisition, construction, and contract administration of such projects. Any facility constructed pursuant to the authority granted in this section shall be constructed in accordance with the applicable standards of the Department for such facility. Prior to executing any agreement pursuant to this section, a joint public hearing shall be held concerning the benefits of and need for as well as the location and design of the facility.

2006, c. 587, § 33.1-228.1; 2014, c. 805.

Article 2. Establishment, Alteration, and Discontinuance of Highways.

§ 33.2-705. Continuance of powers of county authorities; alternative procedure.

The local authorities shall continue to have the powers vested in them on June 20, 1932, for the establishment of new highways in their respective counties, which shall, upon such establishment, become parts of the secondary state highway system within such counties. They shall likewise have the power to alter or change the location of any highway now in the secondary state highway system within such counties or that may hereafter become a part of the secondary state highway system within such counties. The Commissioner of Highways shall be made a party to any proceeding before the local authorities for the establishment of any such highway or for the alteration or change of the location of any such highway. When any such board or commission appointed by the governing body of a county to view a proposed highway or to alter or change the location of an existing highway shall award damages for the right-of-way for the same, in either case to be paid in money, it may be paid by the governing body of the county out of the general county levy funds. No expenditure by the Commonwealth shall be required upon any new highway so established or any old road the location of which is altered or changed by the local authorities, except as may be approved by the Commissioner of Highways. If the property sought to be taken is for the easement or right-of-way, the plat shall reasonably indicate thereon any appurtenant right-of-way or easement for ingress and egress to and from the principal easement or right-of-way being taken.

As an alternative to the method of establishing or relocating a highway provided in the preceding paragraph, the Commissioner of Highways, by and with the approval of the Board and the governing body of a county, shall have power and authority to make such changes in routes in, and additions to, the secondary state highway system as the public safety or convenience may require.

The service of any process or notice in any such proceedings upon the district administrator of the Department having the supervision of maintenance and construction of highways in any such county shall be termed sufficient service on the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-141; 1950, p. 726; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-229; 1980, c. 441; 1984, c. 198; 2013, cc. 585, 646; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-706. How highways and bridges in counties established or altered; examination and report; width and grade of highways; employing engineer.

Whenever the governing body of any county is of the opinion that it is necessary to establish or alter the location of a public highway or bridge, or any other person applies to the local governing body therefor, it may appoint five viewers, who shall be resident freeholders of the county, any three of whom may act, to examine such highways or routes and report upon the expediency of establishing or altering the location of such public highway or bridge. In lieu of such viewers, the local governing body may direct the county road engineer or county road manager to examine such highway or route and make such report, and such board may establish or alter such highway or bridge upon such location and of such width and grade as it may prescribe. The right-of-way for any public highway shall not be less than 30 feet wide, except that in any case in which the cost of constructing and maintaining any such highway is to be borne by any individual the right-of-way for such highway may be less than 30 but not less than 15 feet in width. If none of the viewers is an engineer, appointed for the purpose of making survey and map, the local governing body may employ an engineer, if necessary, to assist the viewers.

Code 1950, § 33-142; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-230; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-707. Duty of viewers.

The viewers or the county road engineer or county road manager shall, as early as practicable after receiving the order of the local governing body, proceed to make the view and may examine routes and locations other than that proposed and if of the opinion that there is a necessity to establish or alter the location of the public highway or bridge shall locate the same and make a report to the local governing body that includes a map or diagram of the location made and that states:

1. Their reasons for preferring the location made;

2. The probable cost of establishing or altering the location of such highway or bridge;

3. The convenience and inconvenience that will result to individuals as well as to the public;

4. Whether the highway or bridge will be one of such mere private convenience as to make it proper that it should be opened, established, or altered and kept in order by the person for whose convenience it is desired;

5. Whether any yard, garden, or orchard will have to be taken;

6. The names of the landowners on such route;

7. Which of such landowners require compensation;

8. What will be a just compensation to the landowners requiring compensation for the land so taken and for the damages to the residue of the tract, if any, beyond the peculiar benefits to be derived in respect to such residue, from the highway or bridge to be established; and

9. All other facts and circumstances in their opinion useful in enabling the local governing body to determine the expediency of establishing or altering the highway or bridge.

They shall file such report with the clerk of the local governing body.

Code 1950, § 33-144; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-231; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-708. Pay to viewers, commissioners, and engineers.

A statement in writing showing the number of days each viewer or commissioner and engineer, appointed or employed under the provisions of this article, was employed shall be sworn to and presented to the governing body, and the governing body may allow a reasonable compensation not exceeding $50 per day to each viewer or commissioner and not exceeding $7.50 per day and necessary traveling expenses for the engineer, provided that in any county adjoining a county having a population in excess of 1,000 per square mile and in the County of Henrico, the governing body may pay the viewers, commissioners, and engineers in addition to expenses not exceeding $25 a day for each day they were respectively employed hereunder.

Code 1950, § 33-155; 1950, p. 157; 1966, c. 438; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-242; 1975, c. 445; 1978, c. 305; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-709. Consent of landowners.

In the event that some of the landowners do not require compensation and will execute their written consent giving the right-of-way in question, the viewers or the county road engineer or county road manager shall obtain such consent and return it with the report to the local governing body, and such written consent shall operate and have the force and effect of a deed from the landowners of the county for the right-of-way so long as it is used by the public, in case the highway is established, and it shall be recorded in the deed books of the county.

Should any of the landowners require compensation and not unite in such deed, the subsequent proceedings shall be as prescribed in this article.

Code 1950, § 33-145; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-232; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-710. Proceedings on report; notice to owners.

At the next meeting of the local governing body after receipt of such report, as provided in § 33.2-707, unless the opinion of the local governing body is against establishing or altering the highway or bridge, the local governing body shall require its clerk to give written notice to the owner of the land on which it is proposed to establish or alter such highway or bridge at least five days before the hearing to be held under § 33.2-712 informing the owner of the time and place of the hearing at which he may appear and present his views. Notice sent by registered or certified mail to the last known address of such owner as shown on the current real estate tax assessment books shall be deemed adequate compliance with this requirement. If the hearing is continued, notice shall be mailed again. If the current real estate tax assessment books do not contain the name of the owner of the affected land, notice of the hearing shall be published once each week for four successive weeks in a newspaper having general circulation in the county.

Code 1950, § 33-146; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-233; 1977, c. 470; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-711. Guardian ad litem for persons under disability.

If any such owner or proprietor is a person under a disability as defined in § 8.01-2, the circuit court of the county shall, at the time the clerk shall issue such process, or as soon thereafter as practicable, upon the court's or judge's own motion, or upon the suggestion of any party in interest, appoint for such person a guardian ad litem, who shall faithfully represent the interest of the person under a disability and whose fees shall be fixed by the court or judge making the appointment.

Code 1950, § 33-147; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-234; 2005, c. 716; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-712. Defense allowed; what board may do.

Upon the return of the process duly executed, defense may be made to the proceedings by any party and the local governing body may hear testimony touching the expediency or propriety of establishing or altering the highway or bridge. Upon such hearing, the local governing body shall fix just compensation to the proprietors and tenants for the land proposed to be taken and the damage accruing therefrom, unless the local governing body is of the opinion that the highway or bridge should not be established or altered in which case it shall so order.

Code 1950, § 33-148; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-235; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-713. Appointment of commissioners to assess damages.

If a tenant or proprietor desires or if the local governing body sees cause, the local governing body shall appoint five disinterested resident freeholders of the county as commissioners, any three of whom may act to ascertain just compensation for the land to be taken for such highway or bridge and damages, if any, to the residue, beyond the benefits to be derived by such residue, from such highway or bridge.

Code 1950, § 33-149; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-236; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-714. Enhancement in value of residue.

The enhancement, if any, in value of the residue by reason of the establishment or alteration of such highway or bridge shall be offset against the damage to the residue, but there shall be no recovery over against such landowner for any excess nor shall enhancement be offset against the value of land taken.

Code 1950, § 33-150; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-237; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-715. Action of commissioners; report.

The commissioners shall meet on the lands of the proprietors and tenants that are named in the order of the local governing body at a specified place and day, of which notice shall be given by the sheriff to such proprietors and tenants or their agents. Notice need not be given to any person present at the time the order is made. Any one or more of the commissioners attending on the land may adjourn, from time to time, until their business is finished. The commissioners, in the discharge of their duties, shall comply in all respects with the provisions of Chapter 2 (§ 25.1-200 et seq.) of Title 25.1 so far as applicable. They shall promptly make their report as required by § 25.1-232 to the local governing body and, unless good cause is shown against the report, it shall be confirmed. If, however, good cause is shown against the report or the commissioners report their disagreement or fail to report within a reasonable time, the local governing body may appoint other commissioners to ascertain the compensation and damages. When any report is confirmed, the local governing body shall establish or alter the highway or bridge with or without gates, as it may seem proper, and provide for the payment of the compensation and damages allowed.

Code 1950, § 33-151; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-238; 1991, c. 520; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-716. Appeal to circuit court.

If an applicant, proprietor, or tenant is not satisfied with the decision of the local governing body with respect to the amount of compensation or damages allowed, he may appeal, but only on the question of compensation and damages, to the circuit court of the county, provided such appeal is filed within 60 days. The court shall hear the matter de novo as to the amount of compensation and damages with the further right of appeal as provided by general law. Upon the hearing of the appeal, the court shall ascertain the amount of compensation and damages, if any, to which such proprietor is entitled, and shall certify the same to the local governing body, which shall proceed to carry out the judgment of the court, provided that the local governing body shall be summoned to appear at the hearing of the appeal.

Code 1950, § 33-152; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-239; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-717. Who shall pay costs, compensation, and damages.

When the highway or bridge is established or altered, the county shall be chargeable with the compensation and damages to the proprietor or tenant and all costs incurred in the proceedings, provided that when the record shows that the sum allowed by the circuit court on appeal, as compensation and damages to any proprietor or tenant is not more than the amount allowed by the local governing body from whose decision the appeal was taken, such proprietor or tenant shall be adjudged to pay the costs occasioned by such appeal. When the local governing body decides against the application to establish or alter a highway or bridge, the applicant shall pay the costs incurred in the case, except the compensation of the viewers.

But when it shall appear to the local governing body that the opening and establishing or altering of such highway will be for mere private convenience, then the local governing body may order the same upon condition that such applicant pay, in whole or in part, the compensation and damages to the proprietor or tenant and the costs of the proceedings and keep the highway in order. In any such case the highway shall not be opened and established or altered until such compensation and damages and costs has been first paid or the written consent of the proprietor or tenant has been given.

Code 1950, § 33-153; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-240; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-718. Highways not to be established through cemetery or seminary of learning without owners' consent.

No highway shall be established upon or through the lands of any cemetery or through the lands of any seminary of learning without the consent of the owners thereof.

Code 1950, § 33-154; 1964, c. 565; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-241; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-719. Abandonment of certain highways and railway crossings.

The governing body of any county that has chosen or hereafter chooses not to be included in the provisions of Article 3 (§ 33.2-324 et seq.) of Chapter 3, whenever it deems that any part of a highway subject to its jurisdiction is no longer required or an existing crossing by any such highway of the lines of a railway company, or any existing crossing by the lines of a railway company of such highway, is no longer necessary as a part of such highway system, may abandon the section of highway or the crossing.

The procedure for any such abandonment shall be governed by the provisions applicable to the Board as provided in Articles 1, 2, and 3 (§§ 33.2-900 through 33.2-926) of Chapter 9 and all provisions applicable to the Board shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to the governing body of the county.

Code 1950, § 33-155.1; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-243; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-720. Supervisors may issue process.

The governing body of a county shall have power to cause process to issue and compel the attendance of witnesses and other parties.

Code 1950, § 33-159; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-244; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-721. Compensation of clerk of board.

The clerk of the local governing body of a county shall receive for the duties to be performed by him under the provisions of this article compensation to be fixed and allowed to him by the local governing body.

Code 1950, § 33-160; 1956, c. 582; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-245; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-722. Discontinuance of gates on public highways.

Whenever a public highway is, or has been, established with gates, any person may apply to the governing body of the county to have such gates discontinued, on which application proceedings shall be had in accordance with the applicable provisions of §§ 33.2-706 through 33.2-717. If the local governing body decides that the gates shall be removed, it shall direct the sheriff of the county to remove the same, and the sheriff shall do so at such time as the local governing body may direct.

When damages are allowed to any person or persons on account of the removal of such gates, such damages and the costs incident to the proceeding shall be paid out of the county general fund. Any such person shall have an appeal of right to the circuit court of the county, at any time within 10 days from the date of the order making such allowance, but only from the amount of damages allowed.

Code 1950, § 33-161; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-246; 2014, c. 805.

Article 3. Assumption of District Highway Indebtedness.

§ 33.2-723. Assumption of district highway indebtedness by counties.

A. Any county may assume the payment of and pay any outstanding indebtedness of any magisterial district or districts thereof incurred for the purpose of constructing public highways that were subsequently taken over by the Commonwealth, provided the assumption thereof is approved by a majority of the qualified voters of the county voting on the question at an election to be held as provided in this section.

B. The governing body of the county may, by a resolution entered of record in its minute book, require the judges of election to open a poll at the next regular election and take the sense of the qualified voters of the county upon the question whether or not the county shall assume the highway indebtedness of __________ district, or __________ districts. The local governing body shall cause notice of such election to be given by the posting of written notice thereof at the front door of the county courthouse at least 30 days prior to the date the same is to be held and by publication thereof once a week for two successive weeks in a newspaper published or having general circulation in the county, which notice shall set forth the date of such election and the question to be voted on.

C. The ballots for use in voting upon the question so submitted shall be prepared, printed, distributed, voted, and counted and the returns made and canvassed in accordance with the provisions of § 24.2-684. The results shall be certified by the commissioners of election to the county clerk, who shall certify the same to the governing body of the county, and such returns shall be entered of record in the minute book of the local governing body.

D. If a majority of the voters voting on the question vote in favor of the assumption by the county of the highway indebtedness of any district of the county, such indebtedness shall become and be an obligation of the county and as binding thereon as if the same had been originally contracted by the county. In such event the governing body of the county is authorized to levy and collect taxes throughout the county for the payment of the district indebtedness so assumed, both as to principal and interest.

E. Nothing contained in this section shall affect the validity of such district highway obligations in the event that the result of such election is against the assumption thereof by the county, but they shall continue to be as valid and binding in all respects as they were in their inception.

Code 1950, §§ 33-256, 33-257, 33-258, 33-259, 33-260; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-321, 33.1-322, 33.1-323, 33.1-324, 33.1-325; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 8. Offenses Concerning Highways.

§ 33.2-800. Definition.

As used in this chapter, "highway" means a state or county highway.

Code 1950, § 33-278; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-344; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-801. Cutting or damaging trees; damaging bridges; damaging markers; obstructing highways; penalty.

Any person is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor who:

1. Cuts or damages a tree within 50 feet of a highway so as to render it liable to fall and leaves it standing;

2. Knowingly and willfully, without lawful authority, breaks down, destroys, or damages any bridge or log placed across a stream for the accommodation of pedestrians;

3. Obstructs any highway or any ditch made for the purpose of draining the highway;

4. Willfully or maliciously displaces, removes, destroys, or damages any highway sign or historical marker or any inscription thereon that is lawfully within a highway; or

5. Puts or casts into any public highway any glass, bottles, glassware, crockery, porcelain or pieces thereof, caltrops or any pieces of iron or hard or sharp metal, or any nails, tacks, or sharp-pointed instruments of any kind, likely in their nature to cut or puncture any tire of any vehicle or injure any animal traveling thereon. This subdivision shall not apply to the use of any tire deflation device by a law-enforcement officer while in the discharge of his official duties, provided the device was approved for use by the Division of Purchase and Supply.

Code 1950, § 33-279; 1956, c. 676; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-345; 1972, c. 65; 1980, c. 141; 1981, c. 19; 1988, c. 79; 1989, c. 727; 1997, c. 136; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-802. Dumping trash; penalty.

A. It shall be unlawful for any person to dump or otherwise dispose of trash, garbage, refuse, litter, a companion animal as defined in § 3.2-6500 for the purpose of disposal, or other unsightly matter on public property, including a public highway, right-of-way, or property adjacent to such highway or right-of-way, or on private property without the written consent of the owner or his agent.

B. When any person is arrested for a violation of this section, and the matter alleged to have been illegally dumped or disposed of has been ejected from a motor vehicle or transported to the disposal site in a motor vehicle, the arresting officer may comply with the provisions of § 46.2-936 in making an arrest.

When a violation of the provisions of this section has been observed by any person, and the matter illegally dumped or disposed of has been ejected or removed from a motor vehicle, the owner or operator of the motor vehicle shall be presumed to be the person ejecting or disposing of the matter. However, such presumption shall be rebuttable by competent evidence.

C. Any person convicted of a violation of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by confinement in jail for not more than 12 months and a fine of not less than $250 or more than $2,500, either or both. In lieu of the imposition of confinement in jail, the court may order the defendant to perform a mandatory minimum of 10 hours of community service in litter abatement activities.

D. The governing bodies of localities may adopt ordinances not in conflict with the provisions of this section and may repeal or amend such ordinances.

E. The provisions of this section shall not apply to the lawful disposal of such matter in landfills.

Code 1950, § 33-279.1; 1950, p. 453; 1970, c. 264, § 33.1-346; 1972, c. 65; 1976, c. 773; 1978, c. 226; 1981, c. 340; 1988, c. 805; 1995, c. 657; 2000, c. 20; 2003, cc. 113, 787; 2013, c. 156; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-803. Dump creating fire hazard to public bridge; penalty.

It shall be unlawful for any person to establish or maintain a public or private dump containing flammable articles within 500 feet of any public bridge constructed wholly or partly of wood so as to create a fire hazard to such bridge. Any person violating this section is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Each day of operation in violation of this section shall constitute a separate offense. An offense in violation of this section may be enjoined in the manner provided by law for the abatement of public nuisances.

Code 1950, § 33-279.2; 1958, c. 91; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-347; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-804. Junkyards; penalty.

A. For the purpose of promoting the public safety, health, welfare, convenience, and enjoyment of public travel, protecting the public investment in public highways, and preserving and enhancing the scenic beauty of lands bordering public highways, it is hereby declared to be in the public interest to regulate and restrict the establishment, operation, and maintenance of junkyards in areas adjacent to the highways within the Commonwealth.

B. As used in this section:

"Automobile graveyard" means any lot or place that is exposed to the weather and upon which more than five motor vehicles of any kind that are incapable of being operated and which it would not be economically practical to make operative are placed, located, or found. The movement or rearrangement of vehicles within an existing lot or facility does not render this definition inapplicable. The provisions established by this subsection shall begin with the first day that the vehicle is placed on the subject property.

"Federal-aid primary highway" means any highway within that portion of the primary state highway system as established and maintained under Article 2 (§ 33.2-310 et seq.) of Chapter 3, including extensions of such system within municipalities that have been approved by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce pursuant to 23 U.S.C. § 103(b).

"Junk" means old or scrap copper, brass, rope, rags, batteries, paper, trash, rubber, debris, or waste; junked, dismantled, or wrecked automobiles or parts thereof; and old or scrap iron, steel, or other ferrous or nonferrous material.

"Junkyard" means an establishment or place of business that is maintained, operated, or used for storing, keeping, buying, or selling junk or for the maintenance or operation of an automobile graveyard. "Junkyard" includes garbage dumps and sanitary landfills.

"National Highway System" means the federal-aid highway system referenced in 23 U.S.C. § 103 and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, which includes those highways that are designated as such by congressional action or designation by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation. Prior to congressional approval or designation by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, highways classified as National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, Interstate System, or federal-aid primary highways as that system existed on June 1, 1991, shall be considered as the National Highway System.

"Primary highway" means any highway within the primary state highway system as established and maintained under Article 2 (§ 33.2-310 et seq.) of Chapter 3, including extensions of such system within municipalities.

"Visible" means capable of being seen without visual aid by a person of normal visual acuity.

C. No junkyard shall be established any portion of which is within 1,000 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of any National Highway System highway or primary highway or within 500 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of any other highway or city street, except the following:

1. Junkyards that are screened by natural objects, plantings, fences, or other appropriate means so as not to be visible from the main-traveled way of the highway or city street or otherwise removed from sight.

2. Junkyards that are located in areas that are zoned for industrial use under authority of state law or in unzoned industrial areas as determined by the Board.

3. Junkyards that are not visible from the main-traveled way of the highway or city street.

D. Any junkyard lawfully in existence on April 4, 1968, that is within 1,000 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way and visible from the main-traveled way of any interstate or federal-aid primary highway, and not located within an industrial area, shall be screened, if feasible, by the Commissioner of Highways at locations on the highway right-of-way or in areas acquired for such purposes outside the right-of-way, so as not to be visible from the main-traveled way of such highways.

Any junkyard lawfully in existence on April 4, 1968, that is within 1,000 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of any other primary highway or within 500 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of any other highway and visible from the main-traveled way of such highway, and not located within an industrial area, may be screened by the Commissioner of Highways in the same manner as junkyards adjacent to National Highway System highways.

The Commissioner of Highways is authorized to acquire by purchase, gift, or the power of eminent domain such lands or interests in lands as may be necessary to provide adequate screening of such junkyards.

E. When the Commissioner of Highways determines that the topography of the land adjoining a National Highway System highway will not permit adequate screening of such junkyards or the screening of such junkyards would not be economically feasible, the Commissioner of Highways shall have the authority to acquire by gift, purchase, or the power of eminent domain such interests in lands as may be necessary to secure the relocation, removal, or disposal of the junkyards and to pay for the costs of their relocation, removal, or disposal. When the Commissioner of Highways determines that the topography of the land adjoining any other highway will not permit adequate screening or such would not be feasible, the Commissioner of Highways may exercise the same authority to relocate such junkyards as is vested in him in regard to National Highway System highways.

F. Any junkyard that comes into existence after April 4, 1968, and that cannot be made to conform to this section is declared to be a public and private nuisance and may be forthwith removed, obliterated, or abated by the Commissioner of Highways or his representatives. The Commissioner of Highways may collect the cost of such removal, obliteration, or abatement from the person owning or operating the junkyard.

G. The Board is authorized to enter into agreements with the United States as provided in 23 U.S.C. § 136 with respect to control of junkyards.

H. The Commissioner of Highways shall not be required to expend any funds for screening or relocation under this section unless and until federal-aid matching funds are made available for this purpose.

I. Any person violating any provision of this section is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Code 1950, § 33-279.3; 1958, c. 552; 1962, c. 8; 1966, c. 485; 1968, c. 240; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-348; 1973, c. 328; 2005, c. 291; 2013, c. 127; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 9. Abandonment and Discontinuance of Highways and Roads.

Article 1. Abandonment and Discontinuance of Highways in Primary State Highway System.

§ 33.2-900. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Abandonment" means that the public's right to use a public highway, public landing, or public crossing has been extinguished.

"Discontinuance" means that the Board has determined that a highway, landing, or crossing no longer serves the public convenience warranting its maintenance at public expense; it divests the Department from maintenance responsibilities. Discontinuance does not render a highway, landing, or crossing unavailable for public use.

2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-901. Discontinuance of a section of a highway or railroad crossing.

In any case in which a section of a highway is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system, or when, in laying out, constructing, or maintaining sections of highways in the primary state highway system, a part of a highway has been or is straightened or the location of a part of it is altered and a section of the highway is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways, by and with the approval of the Board, may discontinue such section of the highway as a part of the primary state highway system. In addition, in any case in which an existing crossing by such highway of the lines of a railroad company or a crossing by the lines of a railroad company of such highway is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary as a part of the primary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways, by and with the approval of the Board, may discontinue such crossing as a part of the primary state highway system. Discontinuance under this section does not constitute an abandonment of such highway as a public highway or such crossing as a public crossing unless the procedure conforms to § 33.2-902.

The opening of the new section of highway by the Commissioner of Highways and the entry by the Board upon its minutes of its approval of the discontinuance of the section of the highway or the railroad crossing shall be sufficient to constitute such discontinuance.

Code 1950, § 33-76.1; 1950, p. 727; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-144; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-902. Abandonment of highway or railroad crossing; procedure.

A. The Commissioner of Highways either on his own motion or upon petition of any interested landowner may cause any section of a highway in the primary state highway system, or any crossing by such highway of the lines of a railroad company or crossing by the lines of a railroad company of such highway, to be abandoned altogether as a public highway or as a public crossing by complying substantially with the procedure provided in this section.

B. The Commissioner of Highways or any interested landowner may file application with the Board setting out the section of the highway or the railroad crossing sought to be abandoned as a public highway or public railroad crossing. The Board shall give notice of the filing of the application (i) by posting a notice of such application at least three days before the first day of a regular term of the circuit court at the front door of the courthouse of the county in which the section of the highway or railroad crossing sought to be abandoned as a public highway or public railroad crossing is located, or if the section of the highway or the railroad crossing is located partly in two or more counties, at the front door of the courthouse of each county, or (ii) by publishing a notice of such application in two or more issues of a newspaper published in the county or one of the counties in which the section of the highway or the crossing is located. The Board shall also send by registered mail a notice of the application to the governing body of the county or counties. If such highway or railroad crossing is in a town with a population of 3,500 or less, the Board shall give notice to the governing body of the town in the same manner as notice is required to be given to the governing body of the county in which the town is located.

C. If one or more landowners in the county or counties affected by such proposed abandonment or the governing body of a county or town in which the highway or railroad crossing is located files a petition with the Board within 30 days after notice is posted or published and mailed as provided in this section, the Board or a representative thereof shall hold a public hearing in the county or one of the counties for consideration of the application and shall give notice of the time and place of the hearing by publishing such information in at least two issues in a newspaper having general circulation in the county or one of the counties and by mailing notice of the hearing to the governing body of the county or counties, and if applicable to the governing body of the town, in which the highway or railroad crossing is located.

D. If a petition for a public hearing is not filed as provided in this section, or if after a public hearing is held a majority of the Board is satisfied that no public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of highway as a public highway or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing or that the welfare of the public would be served best by abandoning the section of highway or the railroad crossing as a public highway or public railroad crossing, the Board shall (i) within four months of the 30-day period during which notice was posted where no petition for a public hearing was filed or (ii) within four months after the public hearing enter an order on its minutes abandoning the section of highway as a public highway or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing, and with that order the section of highway shall cease to be a public highway, unless the local governing body takes control as provided in this article, or the railroad crossing shall cease to be a public railroad crossing. If the Board is not so satisfied, it shall enter an order dismissing the application within the applicable four months provided in this subsection.

E. In considering the abandonment of any section of highway under the provisions of this section, due consideration shall be given to the historic value, if any, of such highway.

Code 1950, § 33-76.2; 1950, p. 727; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-145; 1978, c. 187; 1980, c. 39; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-903. Grade crossing closing and safety.

A. It is the public policy of the Commonwealth to enhance public safety by establishing safe highway-rail grade crossings, to consolidate and close unsafe, unnecessary, or redundant crossings, and to limit the establishment of new crossings. The Board has the authority to close public highway-rail grade crossings on all systems of state highways for which it has responsibility.

B. The Commissioner of Highways on his own motion or by request of any interested landowner, railroad corporation, or local governing body may petition the Board to close a highway-rail grade crossing as a public crossing.

C. Prior to petitioning the Board to close a highway-rail grade crossing, the Commissioner of Highways shall conduct a traffic engineering study to determine the validity of closing the crossing. The traffic engineering study shall consider all factors, including (i) the number of freight and passenger trains passing the crossing and their timetable speeds, (ii) the distance to an alternate crossing, (iii) the availability of alternate access, (iv) the crossing's accident history during the five-year period immediately prior to the study, (v) the number of vehicles per day using the crossing, (vi) the posted speed limit at the crossing, (vii) the type of warning devices present at the crossing, (viii) the alignment of the roadway and railroad and their angle of intersection, (ix) the number of trucks per day carrying hazardous materials through the crossing, (x) the number of vehicles per day carrying passengers for hire through the crossing, (xi) the number of school buses per day using the crossing, and (xii) the use of the crossing by emergency vehicles.

D. The results of the traffic engineering study shall be made public in accordance with the procedures set forth in § 33.2-902. The Commissioner of Highways shall present his findings and recommendations to the Board, and the Board shall decide what actions to take regarding the railroad crossing at issue.

1996, cc. 114, 157, § 33.1-145.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-904. Effect of abandonment.

In the case of abandonment of a section of highway or a railroad crossing that is part of the primary state highway system under the provisions of this article, such section of highway or such railroad crossing shall not thereafter be a public highway or public railroad crossing unless conveyed to the county or town and subject to the authority of the local governing body. In the case of proceedings for abandonment of any section of highway, not including a railroad crossing situated less than one and one-half miles from another public crossing over the same railroad, as a public highway under the provisions of this article, the local governing body, insofar as such section of highway is located within the county of such governing body, shall have authority to take over such section of highway, not including the railroad crossing, and maintain it as a public highway. However, the local governing body shall adopt an ordinance or resolution to that effect and to give notice thereof to the Commissioner of Highways within 30 days from the posting or publishing and mailing of the notice of the application for the abandonment of such section of highway as a public highway as provided in this article.

Code 1950, § 33-76.3; 1950, p. 728; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-146; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-905. Appeal to circuit court.

A. Any one or more of the landowners who filed a petition, the governing body of any county or town in which the section of highway or the railroad crossing is wholly or partly located, or the Commissioner of Highways may within 30 days from the entry of the order by the Board appeal from the order to the circuit court of the county in which the section of highway or the railroad crossing, or the major portion thereof, sought to be abandoned under § 33.2-902 is located. If the Board fails to enter an order pursuant to § 33.2-902, such person or persons named in this section may appeal to the appropriate circuit court within 30 days from such failure. Such appeal shall be filed by petition in the clerk's office of such court, setting out the order appealed from or the cause appealed from where no order was entered and the grounds of such appeal. Upon the filing of such petition, the clerk of the circuit court shall docket the appeal, giving it a preferred status. If the appeal is by any of the landowners who filed a petition with the Board for a public hearing, notice of such appeal shall be served upon the attorney for the Commonwealth and the Commissioner of Highways. If the appeal is by the local governing body or the Commissioner of Highways, notice of such appeal shall be served upon the landowners who filed petition with the Board for a public hearing. No such appeal shall be tried by the court within 10 days after notice is given as provided in this section unless such notice is waived. The circuit court shall hear the matter de novo with further right of appeal as provided by law. Upon the hearing of the appeal, the court shall ascertain and by its order determine whether public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of highway or the railroad crossing as a public highway or public railroad crossing or whether the welfare of the public will be served best by abandoning the section of the highway or the railroad crossing as a public highway or public railroad crossing and shall enter its order accordingly. The clerk of the court shall certify a copy of the order of the court to the Board.

B. Upon any such appeal, if it appears to the court that by the abandonment of such section of highway or such railroad crossing as a public highway or public railroad crossing any party to such appeal would be deprived of access to a public highway, the court may cause the railroad company or the local governing body to be made parties to the proceedings, if not already parties, and may enter such orders as seem just and proper for keeping open such section of highway or such railroad crossing for the benefit of such party or parties.

C. The provisions of this section shall not apply to any discontinuance of a portion of the primary state highway system under § 33.2-901.

Code 1950, § 33-76.4; 1950, p. 729; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-147; 1978, c. 187; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-906. Alternative procedure for abandonment of old highway or railroad crossing to extent of alteration.

The Commissioner of Highways may declare any highway in the primary state highway system or any highway in the primary state highway system containing a highway-rail grade crossing abandoned when (i) it has been or is altered and a new highway that serves the same users as the old highway is constructed as a replacement and approved by the Commissioner of Highways or (ii) the Chief Engineer of the Department recommends that it is appropriate in connection with the completion of a construction or maintenance project. The old highways or the crossing may be abandoned to the extent of such alteration, but no further, by the entry by the Commissioner of Highways of such abandonment upon the records of the Department.

Code 1950, § 33-76.5; 1950, p. 730; 1952, c. 124; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-148; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-907. Conveying sections of highways or other property no longer necessary.

A. Whenever a highway or a section of a highway has been abandoned in accordance with the provisions of § 33.2-902 or 33.2-906 and is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways shall so certify in writing and may execute in the name of the Commonwealth a deed or deeds conveying such section or sections of highway, either for consideration or in exchange for other lands that may be necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system. Before any such deed either for the sale or exchange of land is executed conveying any section of a highway along which any person resides, the Commissioner of Highways shall give notice to the governing bodies of the county and town and to the owner of the land upon which such person resides of the intention to convey the section of highway. If after a reasonable notice of such intention any such landowner or local governing body so requests, a hearing shall be ordered by the Commissioner of Highways as provided in this article. If upon such hearing it is determined that such section of highway should be left open for the reasonable convenience of such landowner or the public, then such section of highway shall not be conveyed. No such hearing shall be held if such highway was abandoned under § 33.2-902.

B. When real estate acquired incidental to the construction, reconstruction, alteration, maintenance, and repair of the primary state highway system that does not constitute a section of the public highway is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways shall so certify in writing and may execute in the name of the Commonwealth a deed conveying such real estate, interest therein, or any portion thereof, either for consideration or in exchange for other lands that may be necessary for the uses of the primary state highway system.

C. Upon petition of a local governing body, the Board may transfer real estate acquired incidental to the construction, reconstruction, alteration, maintenance, or repair of the primary state highway system that constitutes a section of public highway to the local governing body, and upon such transfer such section of highway shall cease being a part of the primary state highway system.

Code 1950, § 33-76.6; 1950, p. 730; 1954, c. 88; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-149; 2002, c. 445; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

Article 2. Abandonment and Discontinuance of Highways in Secondary State Highway System.

§ 33.2-908. Discontinuance of highway, landing, or railroad crossing; procedure.

A. For the purposes of this article, "landing" means a place on a river or other navigable body of water for loading or unloading goods or for the reception and delivery of travelers, the terminus of a highway on a river or other navigable body of water for loading or unloading goods or for the reception and delivery of travelers, or a place for loading or unloading watercraft, but not a harbor for watercraft.

B. Upon petition of the governing body of any county in which a highway, landing, or railroad crossing is located or upon petition of the governing body of a town with a population of 3,500 or less, or on its own motion, the Board may discontinue any highway, landing, or railroad crossing in the secondary state highway system as a part thereof in any case in which the Board deems such highway, landing, or railroad crossing not required for public convenience. If the Board on its own motion desires to discontinue any such highway, landing, or railroad crossing, the Board shall give notice to the affected governing body at least 30 days prior to such discontinuance. In addition, in cases where only a highway or landing or the maintenance thereof is to be discontinued, the Board shall give notice of such intention to the public at least 30 days prior to such action by publishing such notice in at least one issue in a newspaper having general circulation in the county in which the affected highway or landing is situated and, where practicable, by a registered letter to each landowner whose property abuts the section of highway or landing to be discontinued. For the purposes of this section, the Board may, where practicable, rely upon the tax records of the county to determine the names and addresses of such owners. These additional notice provisions shall not be required in cases where the section of highway to be discontinued has been replaced by a new highway serving the same users. If the governing body of any county or town requests a hearing, or upon petition of any landowner whose property abuts a highway or landing that is to be discontinued, the Board shall hold a hearing in the county in which the highway, landing, or railroad crossing is located in order to ascertain whether or not such highway, landing, or railroad crossing should be discontinued. From the finding of the Board, an appeal shall lie to the circuit court of the county in which such highway, landing, or railroad crossing is located and the procedure thereon shall conform to the procedure prescribed in § 33.2-905. The jurisdiction and procedure for abandonment of highways and landings discontinued as parts of the secondary state highway system in accordance with this article shall remain in the local governing bodies.

C. In cases where the Chief Engineer of the Department recommends that it is appropriate in connection with the completion of a construction or maintenance project to discontinue any highway, landing, or railroad crossing in the secondary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways may discontinue such highway, landing, or railroad crossing as he deems proper. The entry by the Commissioner of Highways upon the records of the Department of the discontinuance shall be sufficient to constitute such discontinuance.

Code 1950, § 33-76.7; 1950, p. 731; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-150; 1978, c. 337; 1981, c. 323; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-909. Abandonment of highway, landing, or railroad crossing; procedure.

A. The governing body of any county on its own motion or upon petition of any interested landowner may cause any section of the secondary state highway system, or any crossing by the highway of the lines of a railroad company or crossing by the lines of a railroad company of the highway, deemed by it to be no longer necessary for the uses of the secondary state highway system to be abandoned altogether as a public highway, a public landing, or a public railroad crossing by complying substantially with the procedure provided in this section.

B. The governing body of the county shall give notice of its intention to abandon any such highway, landing, or railroad crossing (i) by posting a notice of such intention at least three days before the first day of a regular term of the circuit court at the front door of the courthouse of the county in which the section of the highway, landing, or railroad crossing sought to be abandoned as a public highway, public landing, or public railroad crossing is located or (ii) by posting notice in at least three places on and along the highway, landing, or railroad crossing sought to be abandoned for at least 30 days and in either case by publishing notice of its intention in two or more issues of a newspaper having general circulation in the county. In addition, the governing body of the county shall give notice of its intention to abandon such highway, landing, or railroad crossing to the Board or the Commissioner of Highways. In any case in which the highway, landing, or railroad crossing proposed to be abandoned lies in two or more counties, the governing bodies of such counties shall not abandon such highway, landing, or railroad crossing unless and until all affected governing bodies agree. The procedure in such cases shall conform mutatis mutandis to the procedure prescribed for the abandonment of a highway, landing, or railroad crossing located entirely within a county.

When the governing body of a county gives notice of intention to abandon a public landing, the governing body shall also give such notice to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

C. If one or more landowners in the county whose property abuts the highway, landing, or railroad crossing proposed to be abandoned, or if only a section of a highway, landing, or railroad crossing is proposed to be abandoned, whose property abuts such section, or the Board or the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, in the case of a public landing, files a petition with the governing body of the county within 30 days after notice is posted and published as provided in this section, the governing body of the county shall hold a public hearing on the proposed abandonment and shall give notice of the time and place of the hearing by publishing such information in at least two issues in a newspaper having general circulation in the county and shall also give notice to the Board or, if a public landing is sought to be abandoned, to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

D. If a petition for a public hearing is not filed as provided in this section, or if after a public hearing is held the governing body of the county is satisfied that no public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of the secondary highway as a public highway or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing or the landing as a public landing or that the safety and welfare of the public would be served best by abandoning the section of highway, the landing, or the railroad crossing as a public highway, public landing, or public railroad crossing, the governing body of the county shall (i) within four months of the 30-day period during which notice was posted where no petition for a public hearing was filed or (ii) within four months after the public hearing adopt an ordinance or resolution abandoning the section of highway as a public highway, or the landing as a public landing, or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing, and with that ordinance or resolution the section of highway shall cease to be a public highway, a public landing, or a public railroad crossing. If the governing body is not so satisfied, it shall dismiss the application within the applicable four months provided in this subsection.

E. A finding by the governing body of a county that a section of the secondary state highway system is no longer necessary for the uses of the secondary state highway system may be made if the following conditions exist:

1. The highway is located within a residence district as defined in § 46.2-100;

2. The residence district is located within a county having a density of population exceeding 1,000 per square mile;

3. Continued operation of the section of highway in question constitutes a threat to the public safety and welfare; and

4. Alternate routes for use after abandonment of the highway are readily available.

F. In considering the abandonment of any section of highway under the provisions of this section, due consideration shall be given to the historic value, if any, of such highway.

G. Any ordinance or resolution of abandonment issued in compliance with this section shall give rise in subsequent proceedings, if any, to a presumption of adequate justification for the abandonment.

H. No public landing shall be abandoned unless the Board of Game and Inland Fisheries shall by resolution concur in such abandonment.

Code 1950, § 33-76.8; 1950, p. 731; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-151; 1975, c. 255; 1978, c. 187; 1980, c. 39; 1981, c. 323; 1990, c. 190; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-910. Appeal to circuit court.

Any one or more of the landowners whose property abuts the highway, landing, or railroad crossing proposed to be abandoned, or if only a section of a highway, landing, or railroad crossing is proposed to be abandoned, whose property abuts such section of the highway, landing, or railroad crossing, and who petitioned for a public hearing under § 33.2-909 or the Commissioner of Highways, or if a public landing is proposed to be abandoned, the Director of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, may within 30 days from the adoption of an ordinance or resolution by the governing body of the county appeal from the ordinance or resolution to the circuit court of the county in which the section of highway, the public landing, or the railroad crossing sought to be abandoned under § 33.2-909 is located. Where the governing body of the county fails to adopt an ordinance or resolution pursuant to § 33.2-909, such person or persons named in this section shall within 30 days from such failure have a right of appeal to the appropriate circuit court. Such appeal shall be filed by petition in the clerk's office of such court, setting out the ordinance or resolution appealed from or the cause appealed from where no ordinance or resolution was adopted and the grounds of such appeal. Upon the filing of such petition, the clerk of the circuit court shall docket the appeal, giving it a preferred status, and if the appeal is by any of the landowners who filed a petition with the governing body of the county for a public hearing, notice of such appeal shall be served upon each member of the governing body of the county pursuant to § 8.01-300 and either the Commissioner of Highways or the Director of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, as applicable, and if the appeal is by either the Commissioner of Highways or the Director of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, notice of such appeal shall be served upon the governing body of the county and the landowners who filed petition with the governing body of the county for a public hearing. No such appeal shall be tried by the court within 10 days after notice is given, as provided in this section unless such notice is waived. The circuit court shall decide the appeal based upon the record and upon such other evidence as may be presented by the parties. Upon the hearing of the appeal, the court shall ascertain and by its order determine whether adequate justification exists for the decision of the governing body of the county that public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of highway, landing, or the railroad crossing as a public highway, public landing, or public railroad crossing or whether the welfare of the public will be served best by abandoning the section of the highway, landing, or the railroad crossing as a public highway, public landing, or public railroad crossing and shall enter its order accordingly.

Upon any such appeal, if it appears to the court that by the abandonment of such section of highway, landing, or railroad crossing as a public highway, public landing, or public railroad crossing any party to such appeal would be deprived of access to a public highway, the court may cause the railroad company and the governing body of the county, or either, to be made parties to the proceedings, if not already parties, and may enter such orders as seem just and proper for keeping open such section of highway, landing, or railroad crossing for the benefit of such party or parties.

Code 1950, § 33-76.9; 1950, p. 732; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-152; 1978, c. 187; 1981, c. 323; 1990, c. 190; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-911. Permissible uses by counties of certain discontinued secondary highways.

Whenever a secondary highway is discontinued under § 33.2-908, the highway shall continue to be available for use by the public as a highway, unless it has been abandoned pursuant to this chapter or its use has been modified by an ordinance adopted pursuant to this section. The governing body of the county may by ordinance provide for use of a discontinued highway for any of the following purposes: (i) hiking or bicycle trails and paths or other nonvehicular transportation and recreation; (ii) greenway corridors for resource protection and biodiversity enhancement, with or without public ingress and egress; and (iii) access to historic, cultural, and educational sites.

1993, c. 349, § 33.1-152.1; 2011, c. 129; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-912. Alternative procedure for abandonment of old highway or crossing to extent of alteration.

The Commissioner of Highways may declare any highway in the secondary state highway system or any highway in the secondary state highway system containing a highway-rail grade crossing abandoned when (i) it has been or is altered and a new highway that serves the same users as the old highway is constructed as a replacement and approved by the Commissioner of Highways or (ii) the Chief Engineer of the Department recommends that it is appropriate in connection with the completion of a construction or maintenance project. The old highway or the public crossing may be abandoned to the extent of such alteration, but no further, by the entry by the Commissioner of Highways of such abandonment upon the records of the Department.

Code 1950, § 33-76.12; 1950, p. 734; 1952, c. 127; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-155; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-913. Conveying sections of highways, landings, or other property no longer necessary.

A. Whenever a secondary highway or landing has been abandoned in accordance with the provisions of § 33.2-909 or 33.2-910 or in accordance with § 33.2-912 and its use is no longer deemed necessary by the Commissioner of Highways, the Commissioner of Highways shall so certify in writing to the governing body of the county in which such highway or landing is located, and the governing body of the county or the Commissioner of Highways shall then be authorized to execute, in the name of the Commonwealth or the county, a deed or deeds conveying such section or sections of highway or such landing, either for consideration or in exchange for other lands that may be necessary for the uses of the secondary state highway system. Before any such deed either for the sale or exchange of land is executed conveying any section of a highway or landing along which any person resides, notice shall be given by the Commissioner of Highways or the governing body of the county and to the owner or owners of the land upon which such person resides of the intention to convey the section of highway or the landing and if after a reasonable notice of such intention any such landowner so requests, a hearing shall be ordered by the Commissioner of Highways or governing body of the county as provided in this article. If upon such hearing it is determined that such section of highway or landing should be kept open for the reasonable convenience of such landowner or the public, then such section of highway or landing shall not be conveyed.

Any such conveyance by the governing body of a county shall not be subject to § 15.2-1800.

B. When real estate acquired by the Commonwealth incidental to the construction, reconstruction, alteration, maintenance, and repair of the secondary state highway system does not constitute a section of a public highway and is deemed by the Commissioner of Highways no longer necessary for the uses of the secondary state highway system, the Commissioner of Highways shall so certify in writing and is authorized to execute in the name of the Commonwealth a deed or deeds conveying such real estate, interest therein, or any portion thereof, either for consideration or in exchange for other lands that may be necessary for the uses of the secondary state highway system.

C. Upon petition of a local governing body, the Board may transfer real estate acquired incidental to the construction, reconstruction, alteration, maintenance, or repair of the secondary state highway system that constitutes a section of public highway to the local governing body, and upon such transfer, such section of highway shall cease being a part of the secondary state highway system.

Any such conveyance shall be subject to approval of the Board by resolution and recorded in the minutes of the Board.

Code 1950, § 33-76.11; 1950, p. 733; 1956, c. 106; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-154; 1981, c. 323; 2002, c. 445; 2011, cc. 36, 152; 2014, c. 805.

Article 3. Abandonment of Roads Not in Primary or Secondary State Highway System.

§ 33.2-914. County roads not part of primary or secondary state highway system; definitions.

A. The provisions of this article shall apply mutatis mutandis to county roads maintained by a county and not part of the secondary state highway system and to roads dedicated to public use but that are not part of the primary or secondary state highway system.

B. For the purposes of this article:

"Governing body" means the governing body of a county.

"Road" includes streets and alleys dedicated to public use and any existing crossing by the lines of a railroad company of such road and a railroad crossing by such road of the lines of a railroad company.

Code 1950, § 33-76.13; 1950, p. 734; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-156; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-915. Abandonment of certain roads and railroad crossings by governing body.

A. When a section of a road not in the secondary state highway system, or an existing crossing by such road of the lines of a railroad company or a crossing by the lines of a railroad company of such road, is deemed by the governing body in which it is located to be no longer necessary for public use, the governing body may abandon such section of the road or such crossing by proceeding as prescribed in this article.

B. In considering the abandonment of any section of road under the provisions of this section, due consideration shall be given to the historic value, if any, of such road.

Code 1950, § 33-76.14; 1950, p. 734; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-157; 1978, c. 616; 1980, c. 39; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-916. Notice of proposed abandonment.

In the case of a proposed abandonment of a road not part of the primary or secondary state highway system, the governing body shall give at least 30 days' notice of its intention to do so by posting notice at the front door of the courthouse, by posting notices on at least three places along and visible from the road proposed to be abandoned, and by publishing notice in at least two issues in a newspaper having general circulation in the county. All such notices shall state the time and place at which the governing body will meet to consider the abandonment of such road.

Code 1950, § 33-76.15; 1950, p. 734; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-158; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-917. Petition for abandonment.

Any person desiring to have a road abandoned may petition the governing body to abandon such road by filing the petition and a reasonably accurate plat and description of the section proposed to be abandoned with the governing body and in the clerk's office of the county. The governing body may proceed to have such road abandoned as provided in this article, but the expenses shall be borne by the petitioner.

Code 1950, § 33-76.16; 1950, p. 735; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-159; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-918. Petition for public hearing on proposed abandonment.

If one or more landowners affected by a proposed abandonment file a petition for a public hearing with the governing body within 30 days after notice is posted and published, the governing body shall hold a public hearing in the county for the consideration of the proposed abandonment.

Code 1950, § 33-76.17; 1950, p. 735; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-160; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-919. Action of governing body.

If a petition for a public hearing is not filed as provided in § 33.2-918, or if after a public hearing is held the governing body is satisfied that no public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of road as a public road or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing or that the welfare of the public would be served best by abandoning the section of road or the railroad crossing as a public road or public railroad crossing, the governing body shall (i) within four months of the 30-day period during which notice was posted where no petition for a public hearing was filed or (ii) within four months after the public hearing adopt an ordinance or resolution abandoning the section of road as a public road or the railroad crossing as a public railroad crossing, and with that ordinance or resolution the section of road shall cease to be a public road. If the governing body is not so satisfied, it shall dismiss the application within the applicable four months provided in this section.

Code 1950, § 33-76.18; 1950, p. 735; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-161; 1978, c. 187; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-920. Appeal to circuit court.

Any one or more of the landowners who filed a petition or the governing body may within 30 days from the action of the governing body on the proposal appeal from the action of the governing body to the circuit court of the county. Where the governing body fails to adopt an ordinance or resolution pursuant to § 33.2-919, such person named in this section shall within 30 days from such failure have a right of appeal to the appropriate circuit court. Such appeal shall be filed by petition in the clerk's office of such court, setting out the action or inaction appealed from and the grounds for appeal. Upon the filing of such petition, the clerk of the circuit court shall docket the appeal, giving it a preferred status, and if the appeal is by any of the landowners who filed a petition with the governing body for a public hearing, notice of such appeal shall be served upon the attorney for the Commonwealth and the governing body. No such appeal shall be tried by the court within 10 days after notice is given as provided in this section unless such notice is waived. The circuit court shall hear the matter de novo with further right of appeal as provided by law. The court may appoint viewers to make such investigation and findings as the court requires of them. Upon the hearing of the appeal, the court shall ascertain and by its order determine whether public necessity exists for the continuance of the section of road or the railroad crossing as a public road or public railroad crossing or whether the welfare of the public will be served best by abandoning the section of the road or the railroad crossing as a public road or public railroad crossing and shall enter its order accordingly.

Upon any such appeal, if it appears to the court that by the abandonment of such section of road or such railroad crossing as a public road or public railroad crossing any party to such appeal would be deprived of access to a public road, the court may cause the railroad company and the governing body, or either, to be made parties to the proceedings, if not already parties, and may enter such orders as seem just and proper for keeping open such section of road or such railroad crossing for the benefit of such party or parties.

Code 1950, § 33-76.19; 1950, p. 735; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-162; 1978, c. 187; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-921. Effect of abandonment.

In the case of the abandonment of any section of road or any railroad crossing under the provisions of this article, such section of road or such crossing shall cease to be a public road or public railroad crossing. However, any such abandonment shall be subject to the rights of owners of any public utility installations that have been previously erected therein.

Code 1950, § 33-76.20; 1950, p. 736; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-163; 1986, c. 12; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-922. Recordation of abandonment of roads, highways, or railroad crossings by counties.

A certified copy of any ordinance, resolution, or order abandoning a road, highway, or railroad crossing by a county adopted pursuant to Article 2 (§ 33.2-908 et seq.) or this article shall be recorded and indexed in the deed book in the name of the county as grantor or where record title to the underlying fee is not known shall be recorded in the office of the clerk of court in the county where such road, highway, or railroad crossing is located in the name of the county adopting such ordinance or resolution or entering such order.

1986, c. 631, § 33.1-163.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-923. Alternative procedure for abandonment of old road or crossing to extent of alteration.

When any road or any road containing a highway-rail grade crossing has been or is altered and a new road that serves the same users as the old road is constructed as a replacement and approved by the governing body, the old road or public crossing may be abandoned to the extent of such alteration, but no further, by an ordinance or resolution of the governing body declaring the old road or public crossing abandoned.

Code 1950, § 33-76.21; 1950, p. 736; 1952, c. 123; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-164; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-924. Conveying sections of roads or other property no longer necessary.

When any road abandoned as provided in this article is deemed by the governing body no longer necessary for the public use, the governing body shall so certify in its minutes and may authorize the sale and conveyance in the name of the county of a deed or deeds conveying such sections, either for consideration or in exchange for other lands that may be necessary for the uses of the county. However, before any such deed either for the sale or exchange of land is executed conveying any section of a road along which any person resides, the governing body shall give notice to the owner of the land upon which such person resides of the intention to convey the section of road, and if after a reasonable notice of such intention any such landowner so requests, the governing body shall order a hearing. If upon such hearing it is determined that such section of road should be kept open for the reasonable convenience of such landowner or the public, then such section of road shall not be conveyed. The action of the governing body under this section shall not be subject to § 15.2-1800.

Code 1950, § 33-76.22; 1950, p. 736; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-165; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-925. Alternative method of abandoning roads.

As an alternative to the procedure for abandonment prescribed by this article, a road may be abandoned in accordance with the procedure for vacations in subdivision 2 of § 15.2-2272. All abandonments of roads sought to be effected according to subsection (b) of former § 15.1-482 before July 1, 1990, are hereby validated notwithstanding any defects or deficiencies in the proceeding, provided that property rights that have vested subsequent to the attempted abandonment are not impaired by such validation. The manner of reversion shall not be affected by this section.

1990, c. 198, § 33.1-166.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-926. Chapter 20 of Title 15.2 not affected.

No provision of Articles 1 (§ 33.2-900 et seq.), 2 (§ 33.2-908 et seq.), or this article shall affect the provisions of Chapter 20 (§ 15.2-2000 et seq.) of Title 15.2.

Code 1950, § 33-76.24; 1950, p. 737; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-167; 2014, c. 805.

Article 4. Abandonment of Highways for Flooding Secondary Highways in Connection With Municipal Water Supply Projects.

§ 33.2-927. Abandonment of highway in area to be flooded in connection with municipal water supply projects.

When a city or town that owns and operates a waterworks system that supplies the city or town and its inhabitants with water finds it necessary to increase its water supply such that it requires impounding the water of a stream outside the corporate limits of such city or town by means of a dam erected in such stream and the impounding of the water thereof would result in the overflow, or flooding, of a section or sections of a highway or highways within the secondary state highway system that necessitates the alteration and relocation of the highway or highways and the governing body of the city or town by ordinance declares (i) such necessity and (ii) that it is the intention of such city or town to comply with the requirements of this article, then the highway proposed to be flooded may be discontinued and abandoned but only after the city or town has complied with the provisions and requirements of this article.

Code 1950, § 33-82; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-168; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-928. Procedure to secure abandonment of highways to be flooded in connection with municipal water supply projects.

A city or town subject to the provisions of this article shall certify to the governing body of the county within which the highway, or the greater part thereof, lies a copy of the ordinance adopted by the city or town as provided in this article. The governing body of the county, upon receipt, shall within 30 days (i) consider the reasonableness of the action contemplated by the city or town ordinance, (ii) propose and publish an ordinance approving or disapproving the action contemplated by the city or town, and (iii) conduct a hearing thereon. In the event that after such hearing the governing body of the county disapproves the proposed flooding, discontinuance, and abandonment of the highway, the city or town shall have the right to an appeal to the circuit court of the county where the question of the reasonableness of the proposed flooding and abandonment shall be heard de novo by the circuit court and judgment shall be rendered according to its decision. From the judgment a writ of error will lie in the discretion of the Supreme Court of Virginia.

Code 1950, § 33-83; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-169; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-929. Plans for relocation of highways in connection with municipal water supply projects.

If there is a final approval of the abandonment of the highway by the governing body of the county or by the court, the city or town shall, solely at its own expense, submit to the Commissioner of Highways plans and specifications for a proposed relocation of the highway, containing such information and facts as a location, elevations, and other matters the Commissioner of Highways may require. The Commissioner of Highways shall have the power to change, alter, and amend the plans in order to conform to the views of the Commissioner of Highways as to the location, width, and type of construction of such highway to be built on the new location, provided that the new highway is located such that it will not be flooded by the water to be impounded, and provided further that the Commissioner of Highways may not require a more expensive type or character of highway than the one to be abandoned. The Commissioner of Highways shall approve such plans and specifications either as proposed by the city or town or as amended by the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-84; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-170; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-930. Acquisition of lands for relocation.

Upon the approval of plans and specifications by the Commissioner of Highways, the city or town shall, solely at its own expense and in the name of the Commonwealth, acquire either by purchase or condemnation the right-of-way necessary to construct the highway on the new location as shown by the plans approved by the Commissioner of Highways. In the event of condemnation, the proceedings shall be instituted in the name of the city or town and shall conform to the proceedings that would be applicable if they had been instituted by the Commissioner of Highways. However, when the award has been paid, the title to the lands acquired in the proceedings shall vest in the Commonwealth in the same manner as if the Commissioner of Highways had instituted and conducted the proceedings and had paid the award.

Code 1950, § 33-85; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-171; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-931. Costs of relocation.

The city or town shall pay out of its own funds all costs incident to all surveys, plans, specifications, blueprints, or other matters relating to the relocation of the highway and the entire cost of acquiring, by purchase or by condemnation, the right-of-way.

Code 1950, § 33-86; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-172; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-932. Construction of relocated highway.

Upon the acquisition of a right-of-way as provided in this article, the city or town shall grade such right-of-way and construct the highway required, in accordance with the plans and specifications approved by the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-87; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-173; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-933. Approval or disapproval of construction.

When a highway is completed, the city or town shall notify the Commissioner of Highways, who shall promptly cause an inspection to be made by the Department. If the Department approves the highway construction, the Commissioner of Highways shall notify the city or town in writing of such fact. If the Department disapproves the highway construction, it shall notify the city or town, specifying the Department's objections and recommendations for remedying or removing them, and the city or town shall promptly carry out such recommendations.

Code 1950, § 33-88; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-174; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-934. New highway part of secondary state highway system; former highway to vest in city or town.

When the city or town has been notified by the Commissioner of Highways of final approval of the construction of the highway, such highway shall immediately become a part of the secondary state highway system, and the public shall be vested with the same rights of travel on such highway as it possesses with respect to the other highways in the system. The part of the highway that it is proposed to flood shall be deemed to be abandoned, and all public rights therein shall vest in the city or town.

Code 1950, § 33-89; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-175; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 10. Eminent Domain.

Article 1. Eminent Domain and Damages.

§ 33.2-1000. Definitions.

As used in this article, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Certificate" means an instrument that, when recorded in the office of the clerk of the circuit court wherein condemnation proceedings are pending or are to be instituted by the Commissioner of Highways, terminates the interest or estate of the owner of the property described therein and vests defeasible title to such property or interest or estate of the owner in the Commonwealth. "Certificate" includes a certificate of deposit and a certificate of take.

"Certificate of deposit" means a certificate issued by the Commissioner of Highways and countersigned by the State Treasurer, stating that any sum or sums designated therein shall be paid pursuant to the order of the court, and filed by the Commissioner of Highways with the court wherein condemnation proceedings are pending or are to be instituted in lieu of the payment of funds into court, as provided in subdivision A 2 of § 33.2-1019.

"Certificate of take" means a certificate recorded by the Commissioner of Highways with the court wherein condemnation proceedings are pending or are to be instituted, in connection with which the Commissioner of Highways has deposited funds with the court as provided in subdivision A 1 of § 33.2-1019.

"Owner" means any person owning land, buildings, structures, or improvements upon land where such ownership is of record in the land records of the clerk's office of the circuit court of the city or county where the property is located. "Owner" does not include trustees or beneficiaries under a deed of trust, any person with a security interest in the property, or any person with a judgment or lien against the property. In proceedings instituted by the Commissioner of Highways under Title 25.1 or this title, "owner" includes persons owning structures or improvements for which an outdoor advertising permit has been issued by the Commissioner of Highways pursuant to § 33.2-1208. This definition of owner shall not alter in any way the valuation of such land, buildings, structures, or improvements under existing law.

"Public highway" means a highway, road, or street. When applicable, "public highway" includes a bridge, ferry, causeway, landing, or wharf.

2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1001. Power to acquire lands, etc.; conveyance to municipality after acquisition; property owners to be informed and briefed.

A. The Commissioner of Highways is vested with the power to acquire by purchase, gift, or power of eminent domain such lands, structures, rights-of-way, franchises, easements, and other interest in lands, including lands under water and riparian rights, of any person, association, partnership, corporation, or municipality or political subdivision, deemed necessary for the construction, reconstruction, alteration, maintenance, and repair of the public highways of the Commonwealth and for these purposes and all other purposes incidental thereto may condemn property in fee simple and rights-of-way of such width and on such routes and grades and locations as the Commissioner of Highways may deem requisite and suitable, including locations for permanent, temporary, continuous, periodical, or future use and rights or easements incidental thereto and lands, quarries, and locations, with rights of ingress and egress, containing gravel, clay, sand, stone, rock, timber, and any other road materials deemed useful or necessary in carrying out the purposes of this subsection.

B. The Commissioner of Highways is authorized to exercise the power provided under subsection A within municipalities on projects that are constructed with state or federal participation if requested by the municipality concerned. Whenever the Commissioner of Highways has acquired property pursuant to a request of the municipality, he shall convey the title so acquired to the municipality, except that rights-of-way or easements acquired for the relocation of a railroad, public utility company, or public service corporation or company, another political subdivision, or a cable television company in connection with such projects shall be conveyed to that entity in accordance with § 33.2-1014. The authority for such conveyance shall apply to acquisitions made by the Commissioner of Highways pursuant to previous requests as well as any subsequent request.

C. Any offer by the Commissioner of Highways to a property owner with respect to payment of compensation for the prospective taking of property and damage to property not taken incident to the purposes of this section shall separately state (i) the property to be taken and the amount of compensation offered therefor and (ii) the nature of the prospective damage or damages and the amount of compensation offered for each such prospective damage. The amount of the offer shall not be less than the amount of the approved appraisal of the fair market value of such property, in accordance with the provisions of § 25.1-417, or the current assessed value of such property for real estate tax purposes, unless the property has physically changed in a material and substantial way since the current assessment date such that the real estate tax assessment no longer represents a fair valuation of the property, when the entire parcel for which the assessment is made is to be acquired, whichever is greater. Any such appraisal used by the Commissioner of Highways as the basis for an offer shall be prepared by a real estate appraiser licensed in accordance with Chapter 20.1 (§ 54.1-2009 et seq.) of Title 54.1.

D. The Commissioner of Highways shall also provide to a property owner a copy of any report of status of title prepared in connection with such acquisition if prepared pursuant to subsection D of § 25.1-204.

E. In negotiating with a property owner with respect to payment for prospective damage to property not taken incident to the purposes of this section, the Commissioner of Highways shall ensure that such property owner or his authorized representative is properly informed as to the type and amount of foreseeable damage or enhancement. Adequate briefing includes (i) the giving of plats and profiles of the project, showing cuts and fills, together with elevations and grades and (ii) explanation, in lay terms, of all proposed changes in profile, elevation, and grade of the highway and entrances, including the elevations of proposed pavement and shoulders, both center and edges, with relation to the present pavement and approximate grade of entrances to the property.

F. Any option or deed executed by the property owner shall contain a statement that the plans as they affect his property have been fully explained. However, the requirements of this section with respect to information and briefing and the acknowledgment thereof in options and deeds shall in no way be construed to affect the validity of any conveyance, to create any right to compensation, or to limit the authority of the Commissioner of Highways to reasonably control the use of public highways so as to promote the public health, safety, and welfare.

G. Nothing in this section shall make evidence of tax assessments admissible as proof of value in an eminent domain proceeding.

Code 1950, § 33-57; 1956, c. 152; 1966, c. 65; 1968, c. 700; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-89; 1976, c. 430; 1993, c. 67; 1999, c. 88; 2000, c. 1029; 2002, c. 878; 2003, c. 940; 2013, c. 764; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1002. Limitation on power of eminent domain.

No property that is within an agricultural and forestal district as provided by the Agricultural and Forestal Districts Act (§ 15.2-4300 et seq.) shall be condemned by the Commissioner of Highways except in accordance with § 15.2-4313.

1977, c. 681, § 33.1-89.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1003. Additional power to acquire lands.

The Commissioner of Highways may use the powers granted in this title to acquire needed property interests for purposes set out in Article 5 (§ 33.2-281 et seq.) of Chapter 2.

1992, c. 167, § 33.1-89.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1004. Plans for acquisition of rights-of-way.

Subject to compliance with applicable federal regulations, the Commissioner of Highways shall establish a plan for identification and acquisition of rights-of-way that may be needed within the corridors designated on the Statewide Transportation Plan.

2013, cc. 585, 646, § 33.1-89.3; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1005. Acquisition of real property that may be needed for transportation projects; sale of certain real property.

A. When the Commissioner of Highways determines that any real property will be required in connection with the construction of a transportation project, or project as defined in § 33.2-1700, within a period not exceeding 12 years for the Interstate System or 10 years for any other highway system or transportation project from the time of such determination, and that it would be advantageous to the Commonwealth to acquire such real property, he may proceed to do so. The Commissioner of Highways may lease any real property so acquired to the owner from whom such real property is acquired, if requested by him, and, if not so requested, to another person upon such terms and conditions as in the judgment of the Commissioner of Highways may be in the public interest. If the transportation project contemplated, or project as defined in § 33.2-1700, has not been let to contract or construction has not commenced within a period of 20 years from the date of the acquisition of such property, and a need for the use of such property has not been determined for any alternative transportation project, then upon written demand of the owner, or his heirs or assigns, that is received (i) within 90 days from the expiration of such 20-year period or such extension as provided for in this section or (ii) within 30 days from publication of a notice of the intent of the Commissioner of Highways to dispose of such property in a newspaper of general circulation in the political subdivision in which the property is located and the Commissioner of Highways shall notify to the extent practical, the last known owner of said property by certified mail, that such property shall be reconveyed by the Commonwealth to such owner, or his heirs or assigns, upon repayment of the original purchase price, without interest. If the reconveyance is not concluded within six months from receipt by the Commissioner of Highways of a written demand, the reconveyance opportunity shall lapse. However, the 20-year limit established by this section within which the Department must let to contract or begin construction in order to avoid reconveyance shall be extended by the number of days of delay caused by litigation involving the project or by the failure of the Commonwealth to receive anticipated federal funds for such project. The 20-year limit may also be extended in those instances in which a project is included in the Six-Year Improvement Program of the Board or the Six-Year Improvement Program for secondary highways prepared by the county boards of supervisors and in which steps have been taken to move forward. No such reconveyance shall be required for rights-of-way acquired for future transportation improvements at the request of local governing bodies or for rights-of-way acquired for state construction designed to provide future additional lanes or other enhancements to existing transportation facilities.

B. If any real property acquired under this article for use in connection with a transportation project is subsequently offered for sale by the Department and such property is suitable for independent development, the Department shall offer the property for sale at fair market value to the owner from whom it was acquired before such property is offered for sale to any other person. The Commissioner of Highways shall notify, to the extent practicable, the last known owner of such property by certified mail, and the owner shall have 30 days from the date of such notice to advise the Commissioner of Highways of his interest in purchasing the property. If the purchase of the property by the owner from whom it was acquired is not concluded within six months from receipt by the Commissioner of Highways of a written notice, the purchase opportunity shall lapse. The provisions of this subsection shall apply only to property to which the provisions of subsection A do not apply.

C. Subsection B shall not apply to Department projects carried out in cooperation with the United States Army Corps of Engineers as part of a nonstructural flood control project. If property acquired by the Commonwealth under this article in connection with a project is no longer needed by the Commonwealth for such project, such property shall be conveyed to the locality in which such project is located and used in connection with the redevelopment. If such property is not used for economic development, then the property shall revert to the Commonwealth and may be used for any purposes deemed appropriate, including resale.

Code 1950, § 33-57.1; 1958, c. 345; 1964, c. 261; 1970, cc. 110, 322, § 33.1-90; 1972, c. 396; 1973, c. 430; 1983, c. 146; 1988, c. 80; 1992, c. 108; 1997, c. 93; 1998, c. 426; 2000, c. 998; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1006. Reconveyance where property deemed suitable for mass transit purposes.

If any real property that, under the provisions of § 33.2-1005, is or may become eligible for reconveyance is deemed suitable for the mass transit purposes of a public agency, authority, instrumentality, or public service corporation or company, and such entity has submitted tentative plans to the Commissioner of Highways for a mass transit facility utilizing such real property, or portions thereof, and, prior to the eligibility of that real property for reconveyance under this article, the Commissioner of Highways has approved the use of such real property for mass transit purposes, such real estate shall not be eligible for reconveyance under those sections. Upon the formulation of final plans for the facility, the Commissioner of Highways is authorized to enter into an agreement with any such entity for the conveyance of the property to such entity. Any property or portions thereof not necessary for the mass transit facility shall become eligible for reconveyance under the provisions of § 33.2-1005 upon a determination of the final plans for the facility. Such agreement shall provide for the payment to the Commonwealth of an amount equal to that expended by the Commonwealth in the acquisition of such real property, including proportionate administrative costs and costs under the federal Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970, as amended. Upon payment of the agreed consideration, the Commissioner of Highways shall convey the specified property to the facility. However, if construction of such planned facilities is not commenced within 10 years from the date of the agreement between the transit agency and the Commissioner of Highways, the persons who would otherwise have been authorized to petition for reconveyance under § 33.2-1005 or their heirs or assigns may seek reconveyance under the same procedures and on the same basis as established in § 33.2-1005.

This section shall not compel the Commissioner of Highways to convey any such property to such entities in contravention of any federal law or regulation affecting the disposition of real property acquired for highway purposes when such property is no longer needed for such purposes when such property has been acquired with federal funding participation.

1976, c. 724, § 33.1-90.2; 1992, c. 108; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1007. Authority to acquire entire tract of land, or parcel thereof, when only part to be utilized for highway purposes.

In acquiring rights-of-way for highway construction, reconstruction, or improvement, and lands incidental to such construction, reconstruction, or improvement, the Commissioner of Highways is authorized and empowered, whenever a portion of a tract of land is to be utilized for right-of-way or a purpose incidental to the construction, reconstruction, or improvement of a public highway, to acquire by purchase, gift, or the exercise of the power of eminent domain the entire tract of land or any part thereof whenever (i) the remainder of such tract or part thereof can no longer be utilized for the purpose for which the entire tract is then being utilized; (ii) a portion of a building is to be taken; (iii) the cost of removal or relocation of the buildings or other improvements on the remaining portion necessitated by the taking would exceed the cost of destroying such buildings or other improvements; (iv) the highway project will leave the remaining portions without a means of access to a public highway; or (v) in the judgment of the Commissioner of Highways the resulting damages to the remainder of such tract or part thereof lying outside the proposed right-of-way, or the area being acquired for a purpose incidental to the construction, reconstruction, or improvement of a public highway, will approximate or equal the fair market value of such remaining lands. However, the Commissioner of Highways shall not acquire the remainder of such tracts by purchase where the remaining portion is in excess of 10 acres or by condemnation where the remaining portion is in excess of two acres. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed as preventing the Commissioner of Highways from complying, where applicable, with the provisions of § 25.1-417.

Code 1950, § 33-117.2; 1960, c. 546; 1964, c. 262; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-91; 1973, c. 166; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1008. Authority to acquire land to replace parkland; applicability.

For the purposes of this section, "parkland" only includes parks and recreational areas under the jurisdiction of state agencies or local governing bodies. Notwithstanding any contrary provision of this title, the Commissioner of Highways may acquire by gift or purchase any property without a permanent residential structure, or an interest in property, needed to replace parkland that is acquired for the improvement, maintenance, construction, or reconstruction of highways. Land acquired to replace parkland shall be abutting or appurtenant to the property of rights-of-way acquired for the improvement, maintenance, construction, or reconstruction of highways. Before exercising the authority granted by this section, the Commissioner of Highways shall notify the local governing body or state agency having jurisdiction over the parkland and shall obtain the concurrence of the local governing body or state agency that replacement parklands should be acquired and conveyed to the local governing body or state agency in exchange for the parkland needed for the improvement, maintenance, construction, or reconstruction of the highway.

The provisions of this section shall apply only in Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville.

2000, c. 310, § 33.1-91.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1009. Acquisition of residue parcels declared to be in public interest.

The acquisition of such residue parcels in addition to the lands necessary for the immediate use for highway rights-of-way or purposes incidental to the construction, reconstruction, or improvement of public highways is hereby declared to be in the public interest and constitutes a public use as the term public uses is used in Article I, Section 11 of the Constitution of Virginia.

Code 1950, § 33-117.3; 1960, c. 546; 1964, c. 262; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-92; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1010. Use and disposition of residue parcels of land.

The Commissioner of Highways may lease, sell, or exchange such residue parcels of land upon such terms and conditions as in the judgment of the Commissioner of Highways may be in the public interest, provided, however, that the Commissioner of Highways shall not use such parcels for any commercial purpose. The Commissioner of Highways may lease, sell, or exchange such residue parcels of land as may have been acquired under the provisions of the Transportation Development and Revenue Bond Act (§ 33.2-1700 et seq.), upon such terms and conditions as in the judgment of the Commissioner of Highways may be in the public interest. The Commissioner of Highways may lease such parcels of land as may have been acquired under the provisions of § 33.2-1005 in the event the former owner fails to make the request authorized under § 33.2-1005 to persons other than the former owner, upon such terms and conditions as in the judgment of the Commissioner of Highways may be in the public interest. The provisions of Articles 1 (§ 33.2-900 et seq.) and 2 (§ 33.2-908 et seq.) of Chapter 9 shall not be construed to apply to the disposition of land authorized in this section.

Code 1950, § 33-117.4; 1960, c. 546; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-93; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1011. Right to enter on land to ascertain its suitability for highway and other transportation purposes; damage resulting from such entry.

A. The Commissioner of Highways, through his duly authorized officers, agents, or employees, may enter upon any land in the Commonwealth for the purposes of making examination and survey thereof, including photographing; testing, including soil borings or testing for contamination; making appraisals; and taking such actions as may be necessary or desirable to determine its suitability for highway and other transportation purposes or for any other purpose incidental thereto. Such officers, agents, or servants shall exercise care to protect any improvements, growing crops, or timber in making such examination or survey. Such officers, agents, or servants may enter upon any property without the written permission of its owners if (i) the Commissioner has requested the owner's permission to inspect the property as provided in subsection B, (ii) the owner's written permission is not received prior to the date entry is proposed, and (iii) the Commissioner has given the owner notice of intent to enter as provided in subsection C.

B. 1. A request for permission to inspect shall (i) be sent to the owner by certified mail, return receipt requested, delivered by guaranteed overnight courier, or otherwise delivered to the owner in person with proof of delivery and (ii) be made not less than 15 days prior to the first date of the proposed inspection. A request for permission to inspect shall be deemed to be made on the date of mailing, if mailed, or otherwise on the date of delivery.

2. A request for permission to inspect shall include (i) the specific date or dates such inspection is proposed to be made; (ii) the name of the entity entering the property; (iii) the number of persons for whom permission is sought; (iv) the purpose for which entry is made; and (v) the testing, appraisals, or examinations to be performed and other actions to be taken.

C. If the owner's written permission is not received within 15 days of the request for permission, then the Commissioner shall provide notice of intent to enter. Notice of intent to enter shall be sent to the owner by certified mail and be (i) posted at the entryway to the property or at the front door or such other door that appears to be the main entrance of the residence or business located on the parcel upon which the property to be entered is located, if the parcel contains a residence or business; (ii) delivered by guaranteed overnight courier; or (iii) otherwise delivered to the owner in person with evidence of receipt. The notice of intent to enter shall include a copy of the request for permission to inspect and shall be made not less than 15 days prior to the date of intended entry. The notice of intent to enter shall include (a) the specific date or dates of such intended entry; (b) the name of the entity entering the property; (c) the number of persons intending to enter the property; (d) the purpose for which entry is made; and (e) the testing, appraisals, or examinations to be performed and other actions to be taken, which in no way shall exceed those set forth in the request for permission pursuant to subdivision B 2. Notice of intent to enter shall be deemed made on the earlier of (1) the date of mailing, if mailed, or (2) the date of delivery or posting. Any individuals entering the property shall carry identification and shall present such identification upon request of the landowner or his authorized representative.

D. Any entry authorized by this section (i) shall be for the purpose of making surveys, tests, appraisals, or examinations thereof in order to determine the suitability of such property for the project and (ii) shall not be deemed a trespass.

E. The Commissioner shall make reimbursement for any actual damages resulting from entry upon the property. In any action filed under this section, the court may award the owner his reasonable (i) attorney fees, (ii) court costs, and (iii) fees for up to three experts or as many experts as are called by the condemnor, whichever is greater, who testified at trial if the court finds that the Commissioner damaged the owner's property. A proceeding under this subsection shall not preclude the owner from pursuing any additional remedies available at law or equity.

F. The requirements of this section shall not apply to the practice of land surveying, as defined in § 54.1-400, when such surveying is not involved in any eminent domain or any proposed eminent domain matter.

Code 1950, § 33-57.2; 1960, c. 491; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-94; 2007, c. 755; 2011, c. 60; 2014, c. 805; 2019, c. 788.

§ 33.2-1012. Limitations in Title 25.1 not applicable to Commissioner of Highways.

Except as to procedure, the Commissioner of Highways shall not be subject to any limitations in Title 25.1 in exercising the power of eminent domain pursuant to this title.

Code 1950, § 33-57.3; 1964, Ex. Sess., c. 23; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-95; 1972, c. 765; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1013. Notice of exercise of eminent domain power; evidence of value.

A. As used in this section:

"Fair market value" means the price that the real property would bring if it were offered for sale by one who wanted to sell, but was under no necessity, and was bought by one who wanted to buy, but was under no necessity.

"Owner" means any person owning an estate or interest in buildings, structures, or other improvements on real property, which estate or interest is recorded in the official records of the circuit court where the property is located, or improvements for which a permit has been issued by the Commissioner of Highways pursuant to § 33.2-1208. "Owner" does not include trustees or beneficiaries under a deed of trust or any person owning only a security interest in the real property.

B. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in this chapter or in Chapter 2 (§ 25.1-200 et seq.) of Title 25.1:

1. The Commissioner of Highways shall notify every owner, as defined in this section, of a building, structure, or other improvement if the Commissioner of Highways intends to exercise the power of eminent domain in a manner that would result in a taking of the building, structure, or other improvement.

2. The owner of any such building, structure, or other improvement may present evidence of the fair market value of such building, structure, or other improvement in the proceedings described in § 25.1-233, provided such owner has filed a petition for intervention pursuant to § 25.1-218.

3. If the owner of such building, structure, or improvement is different from the owner of the underlying land, then such owner shall not be allowed to proffer any evidence of value that the owner of the underlying land would not be permitted to proffer if the building, structure, or improvement were owned by the owner of the underlying land; and

4. The provisions of this section shall not apply to condemnation proceedings in which the petition for condemnation was filed prior to July 1, 2000.

2000, cc. 822, 843, § 33.1-95.1; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1014. Acquisition of interests for exchange with railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company; relocation of poles, lines, etc.

Whenever any railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company owns or occupies any privately owned land either under a claim of right or with the apparent acquiescence of the private landowner which the Commissioner of Highways deems necessary and intends to acquire for any highway project, and such land owned or occupied by the railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company is devoted to a public use, the Commissioner of Highways may acquire by gift, purchase, or by the exercise of the power of eminent domain additional land or easement, right-of-way, or interest in land adjacent to or approximately adjacent to such land needed and proposed to be acquired for such highway project and may then convey the same to the railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company for use by it in lieu of the land theretofore owned or occupied by it but needed by the Commissioner of Highways for such highway project. The condemnation of such land, easement, right-of-way, or other interest in land to be conveyed to any railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company shall be governed by the procedure prescribed by this article and may be carried out at the same time if against the same property owner and if against the same landowner or in the same proceedings in which land is condemned for highway purposes. The Commissioner of Highways may, under the same procedure and conditions prescribed by this article, with respect to property needed for highway purposes, enter upon and take possession of such property to be conveyed to any railroad, public utility company, public service corporation or company, political subdivision, or cable television company in the manner provided in §§ 33.2-1018 through 33.2-1027 and proceed with the relocation of the installations of the railroad or public utility company in order that the construction of the highway project may be carried out without delay.

After the acquisition of the land owned or occupied by railroads, public utility companies, public service corporations or companies, political subdivisions, or cable television companies and the acquisition of the additional land, easement, right-of-way, or other interest in land for such railroads, utility companies, public service corporations or companies, political subdivisions, or cable television companies as provided in this section, in the event the poles, lines, or other facilities are not removed by such railroads or utility companies within 60 days from the date of the taking by the Commissioner of Highways, the Commissioner of Highways is vested with the power to remove and relocate such facilities at his own cost.

Any conveyance previously made by the Commissioner of Highways in exchange for land that was needed for a highway project is hereby declared to be valid and effective in all respects.

Code 1950, § 33-58; 1960, c. 491; 1968, c. 227; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-96; 1976, c. 380; 1990, c. 242; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1015. Acquisition of land in median of highways for public mass transit; disposition of such property.

When acquiring land for the construction of highways with divided roadways, the Commissioner of Highways may, if he deems it necessary and appropriate, also acquire by gift, purchase, or by the exercise of the power of eminent domain as vested in him by § 33.2-1001, in addition to the land necessary for such highways, sufficient land in the median for use for public mass transit and may convey or otherwise make available the same to a public agency or authority or public service corporation or public service company for the construction and operation thereon of public facilities for mass transit.

Such additional land shall be acquired only after an agreement has been made between the Commissioner of Highways and a public agency or authority or public service corporation or public service company whereby such agency, authority, corporation, or company has agreed to pay the cost of the additional land acquired and all expense incidental to its acquisition.

The condemnation of such land to be conveyed for use for public mass transit shall be governed by the procedure prescribed by this article and may be carried out at the same time if against the same property owner and if against the same landowner or in the same proceedings in which land is condemned for highway purposes. The Commissioner of Highways may, under the same procedure and conditions prescribed by this article with respect to property needed for highway purposes, enter upon and take possession of such property to be conveyed to a public agency or authority or public service corporation or public service company in the manner provided in §§ 33.2-1018 through 33.2-1027.

The Board is authorized and directed with the consent of the Federal Highway Administration to permit the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to commence construction of rapid transit and ancillary facilities within the proposed median of Interstate 66 between Glebe Road in Arlington County and Nutley Road in Fairfax County, provided that (i) construction of rapid transit shall conform with highway plans and that construction procedures shall be reviewed and approved by the Commissioner of Highways and (ii) prior to construction of rapid transit, a mutually satisfactory allocation of cost shall be agreed to by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, the Board, and the Federal Highway Administration.

Code 1950, § 33-58.1; 1962, c. 303; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-97; 1973, c. 508; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1016. Procedure in general; suits in name of Commissioner of Highways; survival; validation of suits; notice of filing.

A. Proceedings for condemnation under this article shall be instituted and conducted in accordance with the procedures provided in Chapter 2 (§ 25.1-200 et seq.) of Title 25.1, except that the provisions of §§ 33.2-1018 through 33.2-1029 shall be applicable to such proceedings.

B. All suits shall be instituted and conducted in the name of the Commissioner of Highways as petitioner without naming the individual who may be such Commissioner of Highways or acting Commissioner of Highways. In the event of the death, removal, retirement, or resignation of the Commissioner of Highways or acting Commissioner of Highways, the suit shall automatically survive to a successor Commissioner of Highways or acting Commissioner of Highways. All suits heretofore filed in accordance with the provisions of this section are hereby ratified, validated, and confirmed.

C. In addition to any other notices required to be served pursuant to this section, in any proceeding instituted by the Commissioner of Highways under this title, a copy of the notice of the filing of the petition also shall be served, in the same manner as such notice is served upon owners, upon any person owning structures or improvements for which an outdoor advertising permit has been issued by the Commissioner of Highways pursuant to § 33.2-1208.

Code 1950, § 33-59; 1960, c. 491; 1964, c. 383; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-98; 1972, c. 765; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1017. Taking highway materials from streams, rivers, and watercourses.

Whenever the Commissioner of Highways determines that it is necessary or desirable to remove materials from the streams, rivers, or watercourses for use on public highways, he shall submit to the Marine Resources Commission his plan for the removal and all conditions relating thereto for its review and concurrence. After receiving the concurrence of the Marine Resources Commission, the Commissioner of Highways may take for use on the public highways in the Commonwealth sand, gravel, rock, and any other materials deemed by him suitable for road purposes from the streams, rivers, and watercourses, title to the bed of which is in the Commonwealth, and in addition to the power of eminent domain already vested in him may acquire by condemnation all property, rights, and easements necessary to enable him to obtain and make use of such materials. All such proceedings shall be governed by the provisions of law governing the exercise by the Commissioner of Highways of the power of eminent domain for state highway purposes.

Code 1950, § 33-69; 1968, c. 659; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-117; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1018. Authority to take possession and title to property before or during condemnation; purpose and intent of provisions.

In addition to the exercise of the power of eminent domain prior to the entry upon land being condemned, as provided in this article, the Commissioner of Highways is authorized to acquire title and to enter upon and take possession of such property and rights-of-way, for the purposes set out in § 33.2-1001, as the Commissioner of Highways may deem necessary, and proceed with the construction of such highway, such taking to be made pursuant to §§ 33.2-1019 through 33.2-1029.

It is the intention of this article to provide that such property and rights-of-way may, in the discretion of the Commissioner of Highways, be condemned during or after the construction of the highway, as well as prior thereto, and to direct the fund out of which the judgment of the court in condemnation proceedings shall be paid, and to provide that in all other respects the provisions of this article shall apply, whether the property and rights-of-way are condemned before, during, or after the construction of the highway. However, the authorities constructing such highway under the authority of this article shall use diligence to protect growing crops and pastures and to prevent damage to any property not taken. So far as possible all rights-of-way shall be acquired or contracted for before any condemnation is resorted to.

Code 1950, § 33-70.1; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-119; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1019. Payments into court or filing certificate of deposit before entering upon land.

A. Before entering upon or taking possession of land pursuant to § 33.2-1018, the Commissioner of Highways shall either:

1. Pay into the court wherein condemnation proceedings are pending or are to be instituted such sum as is required by subsection B; or

2. File with the court wherein condemnation proceedings are pending or are to be instituted a certificate of deposit issued by the Commissioner of Highways for such sum as is required by subsection B, which shall be deemed and held for the purpose of this chapter to be payment into the custody of such court.

B. The amount to be paid into the court as provided in subdivision A 1 or represented by a certificate of deposit as provided in subdivision A 2 shall be the amount that the Commissioner of Highways estimates to be the fair value of the land taken, or interest therein sought, and damage done, which estimate shall be based on a bona fide appraisal if required by § 25.1-417; however, such estimate shall not be less than the current assessed value of the land for real estate tax purposes, unless the property has physically changed in a material and substantial way since the current assessment date such that the real estate tax assessment no longer represents a fair valuation of the property, when the entire parcel for which the assessment has been made is to be acquired.

C. If the Commissioner of Highways makes a payment into court as provided in subdivision A 1, the court shall also record a certificate of take pursuant to § 33.2-1021.

D. Payment against a certificate of deposit, when ordered by the court named therein, shall be paid by the Commissioner of Highways.

E. The Commissioner of Highways shall not be permitted to force relocation on improved owner-occupied property until the owner is permitted to withdraw the funds represented by the certificate filed with the court. However, if the owner refuses to withdraw the funds represented by the certificate filed with the court or if the Commissioner of Highways reasonably believes that the owner does not possess clear title to the property being taken, that ownership of the property is disputed, or that certain owners cannot be located, the Commissioner of Highways may petition the court to establish that the owner does not possess clear title, that the ownership of the property is in dispute, that certain owners cannot be located, or that the owner has refused to withdraw the funds represented by the certificate filed with the court, and request that the Commissioner of Highways be given authority to force relocation.

F. Nothing in this section shall make evidence of tax assessments admissible as proof of value in an eminent domain proceeding.

Code 1950, § 33-70.2; 1958, c. 581; 1970, cc. 322, 684, § 33.1-120; 2003, c. 940; 2004, c. 803; 2013, c. 764; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1020. Payment of certificates of deposit; recordation of certain certificates; notice to owner.

A. A certificate of deposit shall be deemed and held for the purpose of this article to be payment into the custody of such court. Payment against any certificate of deposit so issued and countersigned, when ordered by the court named therein, shall be paid by the State Treasurer on warrants of the Comptroller, issued on vouchers signed by the Commissioner of Highways.

B. A duplicate of each certificate of deposit so issued and countersigned shall be kept as a record in the office of the Commissioner of Highways and a copy thereof shall be filed with the State Treasurer.

C. The Commissioner of Highways shall give notice, between 30 and 45 days prior to the date on which any certificate will be filed or recorded pursuant to this chapter, to the owner or tenant, if known, of the freehold by certified or registered mail that such certificate will be filed or recorded. Additionally, within four business days of the filing or recording of a certificate, the Commissioner of Highways shall give notice of such filing or recording to the owner or tenant, if known, of the freehold by providing a copy of such certificate by certified or registered mail.

Code 1950, § 33-70.3; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-121; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805; 2017, c. 563; 2019, cc. 82, 162.

§ 33.2-1021. Recordation of certificates; transfer of title or interest; land situated in two or more counties or cities.

The certificate of the Commissioner of Highways shall be recorded in the clerk's office of the court where deeds are recorded. Upon such recordation, the interest or estate of the owner of such property shall terminate and the title to such property or interest or estate of the owner shall be vested in the Commonwealth. Such owner shall have such interest or estate in the funds held on deposit by virtue of the certificate as he had in the property taken or damaged, and all liens by deed of trust, judgment, or otherwise upon such property or estate or interest shall be transferred to such funds. The title in the Commonwealth shall be defeasible until the reaching of an agreement between the Commissioner of Highways and such owner, as provided in § 33.2-1027, or the compensation determined by condemnation proceedings as provided in §§ 33.2-1022 through 33.2-1028.

If the land affected by the certificate is situated in two or more counties or cities, the clerk of the court wherein the certificate is recorded shall certify a copy of such certificate to the clerk of the court of the counties or cities in which any portion of the land lies, who shall record the same in his deed book and index it in the name of the person who had the land before and also in the name of the Commonwealth.

Code 1950, § 33-70.4; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-122; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1022. Certificates to describe land and list owner.

The certificate shall set forth the description of the land or interest therein being taken or damaged and, if known, the owner.

Code 1950, § 33-70.5; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-123; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1023. Proceedings for distribution of funds; effect of acceptance of payments; evidence as to amount of deposit or certificate.

A. Any person or persons shown by a certificate to be entitled thereto may petition the court for the distribution of all or any part of the funds deposited with the court pursuant to subdivision A 1 of § 33.2-1019 or represented by a certificate of deposit filed pursuant to subdivision A 2 of § 33.2-1019.

B. A copy of such petition shall be served on the Commissioner of Highways, his deputy, or any attorney authorized to accept service with a notice, returnable to the court or judge not less than 21 days after such service, to show cause, if any, why such amount should not be distributed in accordance with the prayers of the petition.

C. If the Commissioner of Highways does not, on or before the return day of the petition, show such cause, and if the record in the proceeding does not disclose any denial or dispute with respect thereto, the court shall enter an order directing the distribution of such amount in accordance with the prayers of the petition. However, in the case of a nonresident petitioner the court may require a bond before ordering the distribution.

D. If funds have been deposited with the court pursuant to subdivision A 1 of § 33.2-1019, any interest that has accrued on the funds shall be payable to the person or persons entitled to receive such funds.

E. If funds are not then on deposit with the court but are represented by a certificate of deposit filed pursuant to subdivision A 2 of § 33.2-1019, a certified copy of such order shall forthwith be sent to the Commissioner of Highways by the clerk. It shall be the duty of the Commissioner of Highways to deposit such funds with the court within 21 days of the date of such order.

F. Interest shall be payable on funds represented by a certificate of deposit from the date of filing of the certificate of deposit until the funds are paid into court at the rate of interest established pursuant to § 6621(a)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended, for the month in which the order pursuant to this section is entered. However, interest shall not accrue if an injunction is filed against the Department that enjoins the taking of the property described in the certificate.

G. If the Commissioner of Highways shows such cause, or if the record in the proceeding discloses any denial or dispute as to the persons entitled to such distribution or to any interest or share therein, the court shall direct such proceedings as are provided by § 25.1-240 for the distribution of awards.

H. However, the acceptance of such payment shall not limit the amount to be allowed by a commissioner in a condemnation proceeding, nor limit the rights of any party or parties to the proceeding to appeal from any decision therein; nor shall any party to such proceeding be entitled to introduce evidence of any amount deposited with the court or represented by a certificate, nor of any amount that has been accepted by any party entitled thereto pursuant to this section.

Code 1950, § 33-70.6; 1958, c. 581; 1964, c. 487; 1968, c. 232; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-124; 1972, c. 765; 1985, c. 594; 1987, c. 641; 1994, c. 584; 2003, cc. 19, 47, 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1024. Reformation, alteration, revision, amendment, or invalidation of certificate.

Upon the recordation of such certificate, no reformation, alteration, revision, amendment, or invalidation shall be made for any purpose without the prior consent of the court wherein such certificate is recorded. The court shall have jurisdiction to reform, alter, revise, amend, or invalidate in whole or in part any certificate; to correct mistakes in the description of the property affected by such certificate; to correct the name of the owner in the certificate; to correct any other error that may exist with respect to such certificate; or for any other purpose. A petition filed by the Commissioner of Highways with the court setting forth any error made in such certificate, or the necessity of any change therein, shall be deemed sufficient basis for the reformation, alteration, revision, amendment, or invalidation in whole or in part of such certificate. The court may enter an order permitting the reformation, alteration, revision, amendment, or invalidation in whole or in part, and such order, together with any revised certificate that may be necessary, shall be recorded in the current deed book. The filing of any certificate pursuant to the provisions of this section shall not alter the date of taking as established by the filing of the original certificate pursuant to § 33.2-1021 as to any land that is included in the amended certificate, and no such amended certificate shall include any land not in the original certificate. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit or preclude any person from recovering any damages in a condemnation proceeding resulting from such reformation, alteration, revision, amendment, or invalidation.

Code 1950, § 33-70.7; 1958, c. 581; 1968, c. 313; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-125; 1993, c. 35; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256; 2019, c. 788.

§ 33.2-1025. When condemnation proceedings instituted; payment of compensation or damages; order confirming award; recording.

Within 180 days after the recordation of such certificate, if the Commissioner of Highways and the owner of such lands or interest therein taken or damaged by the Commissioner of Highways are unable to agree as to the compensation or damages, if any, caused thereby, or such consent cannot be obtained due to the incapacity of the owner, or because such owner is unknown or cannot with reasonable diligence be found within the Commonwealth, the Commissioner of Highways shall institute condemnation proceedings, as provided in this article, unless said proceedings shall have been instituted prior to the recordation of such certificate. The amount of such compensation and damages, if any, awarded to the owner in such proceedings shall be paid out of the appropriations to the Department. The final order confirming the award of the Commissioner of Highways shall confirm absolute and indefeasible title to the land, or interest therein sought, in the Commonwealth and shall be recorded in the current deed book.

Code 1950, § 33-70.9; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-127; 1993, c. 35; 2003, c. 317; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-1026. Awards in greater or lesser amounts than deposit; interest.

A. If the amount of an award in a condemnation proceeding is greater than that deposited with the court or represented by a certificate of deposit, the excess amount, together with interest accrued on such excess amount, shall be paid into court for the person entitled thereto.

B. Interest shall accrue on the excess amount at not less than the judgment rate of interest as set forth in § 8.01-382, computed from the date of such deposit to the date of payment into court, and shall be paid into court for the person or persons entitled thereto. However, any (i) interest accruing after June 30, 1970, and prior to July 1, 1981, shall be paid at the rate of six percent; (ii) interest accruing after June 30, 1981, and prior to July 1, 1994, shall be paid at the rate of eight percent; and (iii) interest accruing after June 30, 1994, and prior to July 1, 2003, shall be paid at the general account composite rate, compiled by the Department of the Treasury for the month in which the award is rendered.

C. If the amount of an award in a condemnation proceeding is less than that deposited with the court or represented by a certificate of deposit, and the person or persons entitled thereto have received a distribution of the funds pursuant to § 33.2-1023, the Commissioner of Highways shall recover (i) the amount of such excess and (ii) interest on such excess at the rate of interest established pursuant to § 6621(a)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended. If any person has been paid a greater sum than that to which he is entitled as determined by the award, judgment shall be entered for the Commissioner of Highways against such person for the amount of such excess and interest. However, the Commissioner of Highways shall not be entitled to recover the amount of such excess and interest in the event the Commissioner of Highways acquired, by virtue of the certificate, an entire parcel of land containing a dwelling, multiple-family dwelling, or building used for commercial purposes at the time of initiation of negotiations for the acquisition of such property.

Code 1950, § 33-70.10; 1958, c. 581; 1970, cc. 322, 614, § 33.1-128; 1981, c. 476; 1994, c. 584; 1997, c. 865; 2003, cc. 19, 47, 318, 940; 2010, cc. 20, 53; 2014, c. 805; 2017, c. 710.

§ 33.2-1027. Agreements as to compensation; petition and order of court thereon; disposition of deposit.

At any time after the recordation of such certificate, but prior to the institution of condemnation proceedings, if the Commissioner of Highways and the owner of the land or interest therein taken or damaged are able to agree as to compensation for the land taken and damages, if any, caused by such taking, the Commissioner of Highways shall file with the court a petition so stating, with a copy of the agreement attached. If condemnation proceedings are already pending at the time of reaching such agreement, no such petition shall be required, but the motion for dismissal of such proceedings shall contain an averment that such agreement has been reached. Upon the filing of such petition or motion to dismiss, the court shall thereupon enter an order confirming absolute and indefeasible title to the land or interest therein in the Commonwealth. Such order shall be recorded in the current deed book. Upon entry of such order, the Commissioner of Highways and State Treasurer shall be relieved of further obligation by virtue of having filed such certificate of deposit with the court.

If it shall appear from such petition and agreement, or motion to dismiss a pending suit, that no person other than those executing such agreement are entitled to the fund on deposit, the court shall direct that such fund, after payment therefrom of any taxes that may be charged against such land taken, be disbursed and distributed in accordance with the statement or charge in the petition or motion among the parties or persons entitled thereto. If it shall appear that a controversy exists as to the persons entitled to such fund, such distribution shall be made in accordance with the provisions of § 33.2-1023.

Code 1950, § 33-70.11; 1958, c. 581; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-129; 1993, c. 35; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-1027.1. Distribution of funds to owner or owner's attorney.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, upon any settlement or final determination resulting in a judgment for the owner, whether funds have been paid into the court or are outstanding, all such funds due and owing shall be payable to the owner or, if the owner consents, to the owner's attorney within 30 days of the settlement or final determination, unless otherwise subject to § 25.1-240, 25.1-241, 25.1-243, or 25.1-250. Nothing in this section shall be construed to alter the priority of liens or any obligation to satisfy or release any outstanding liens on the property or the funds.

2018, c. 842.

§ 33.2-1028. Enhancement to be offset against damage.

In all cases under the provisions of this article, the enhancement, if any, in value of the remaining property of the landowner by reason of the construction or improvement contemplated or made by the Commissioner of Highways shall be offset against the damage, if any, resulting to such remaining property of such landowner by reason of such construction or improvement. However, such enhancement in value shall not be offset against the value of the property taken, and if such enhancement in value exceeds the damage, there shall be no recovery against the landowner for such excess.

Code 1950, § 33-73; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-130; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1029. Remedy of landowners under certain conditions.

Whenever the Commissioner of Highways enters upon and takes possession of property pursuant to §§ 33.2-1018, 33.2-1019, and 33.2-1020 and has not instituted condemnation proceedings within 180 days after the recordation of a certificate as required by § 33.2-1025, whether the construction of the highway project has been completed or not, the property owner may, if no agreement has been made with the Commissioner of Highways as to compensation and damage, if any, petition the circuit court of the county or the court of the city in which such cases are tried and in which the greater portion of the property lies for the appointment of commissioners or a jury to determine just compensation for the property taken and damages done, if any. A copy of such petition shall be served upon the Commissioner of Highways at least 10 days before it is presented to the court, and the Commissioner of Highways shall file an answer thereto within five days after the petition is so presented. If the court finds that a reasonable time has elapsed for the completion of the construction of the highway project or that 60 days have elapsed since the completion of the construction of the highway project or that more than 180 days have elapsed since the Commissioner of Highways entered upon and took possession of the property, without condemnation proceedings being instituted and without an agreement having been made between the property owner and the Commissioner of Highways as to compensation and damages, if any, commissioners or a jury shall be appointed to ascertain the amount of compensation to be paid for the property taken and damages done, if any. The proceedings shall thereafter be governed by the procedure prescribed by Chapter 2 (§ 25.1-200 et seq.) of Title 25.1 insofar as the same may be applicable.

Code 1950, § 33-75; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-132; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 141; 1972, c. 765; 1991, c. 520; 2003, cc. 317, 940; 2004, c. 804; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1030. Installation of broadband conduit.

Where a public highway exists pursuant to § 33.2-105, the rights of the Commonwealth include the use of such public highway for communications purposes and specifically include the power of the Department to permit a broadband service provider to install, maintain, operate, repair, and replace within the public right of way underground lines, systems, and facilities necessary for the provision and extension of broadband services to the extent allowed by applicable land use permit regulations, policies, and procedures of the Department.

2016, c. 655.

Article 2. Acquisition of Land Used As Cemeteries.

§ 33.2-1031. Commissioner of Highways may enter into agreement with person, church, association, etc.

Whenever it becomes necessary for the Commissioner of Highways to acquire land or other interest therein for the purposes set forth in this title, and such land to be acquired is a part or the whole of a cemetery or graveyard owned by any person, church, association, corporation, or other legal entity that has the legal authority to make disposition of the same, the Commissioner of Highways may enter into agreements with such person, church, association, corporation, or other legal entity for the removal of any remains that may be interred upon the land. Such agreement shall provide for reinterment in some suitable repository. For purposes of this article, the sprinkling of ashes or their burial in a biodegradable container on private residential property, not subject to regulation under Chapter 3 (§ 57-22 et seq.) of Title 57, shall not constitute the creation of a cemetery or graveyard.

Code 1950, § 33-75.1; 1960, c. 308; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-133; 1992, c. 714; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1032. Commissioner of Highways may file petition for condemnation when no agreement can be reached; notice of condemnation proceedings.

In the event no agreement can be reached as provided in § 33.2-1031 or whenever such land is a part or the whole of a cemetery or graveyard owned by persons unknown or by any person, church, association, corporation, or other legal entity not having legal authority to make disposition of the same, the Commissioner of Highways shall petition the court of the city or county in which the land is situated and in which condemnation proceedings are instituted to acquire land for the purpose of condemning such land and having the remains interred in such cemetery or graveyard removed to some suitable repository. To such petition the owner of the land and next of kin of those interred therein, if known, shall be made defendants and served with notice. If such owner and next of kin are unknown, are less than 18 years of age, have been adjudicated insane or incompetent, or are nonresidents of the Commonwealth, such notice shall be served in the manner prescribed by Chapter 2 (§ 25.1-200 et seq.) of Title 25.1.

Code 1950, § 33-75.2; 1960, c. 308; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-134; 2003, c. 940; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1033. Contents of petition for condemnation.

The contents of such petition shall comply with all statutory requirements prescribed for the exercise of the power of eminent domain by the Commissioner of Highways and shall contain the reasons why it is practical to acquire such land and remove any remains that may be interred therein.

Code 1950, § 33-75.3; 1960, c. 308; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-135; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1034. Removal and reinterment of remains; other proceedings.

The trial court shall determine a suitable repository for reinterment and the manner in which the removal and reinterment is to be undertaken and shall tax the cost and expense of such removal and reinterment against the Commissioner of Highways. Insofar as possible and reasonable, the court shall consider the wishes of the next of kin of those interred in such graves in making the determination as to a suitable repository and manner of removal and reinterment. All other proceedings in the condemnation of such land and the determination of just compensation for such taking and damages suffered shall be conducted in accordance with the statutes made and provided for the exercise of the power of eminent domain by the Commissioner of Highways.

Code 1950, § 33-75.4; 1960, c. 308; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-136; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 11. Highway Construction Contracts and Suits; Highway Contractors' Association.

Article 1. Highway Construction Contracts, Limitations on Suits, and Adjustment of Claims.

§ 33.2-1100. Highway construction contracts.

A. Every contractor whose bid is accepted shall, before commencing work, enter into a contract with the Commissioner of Highways that shall fully set out the time when work shall commence and when the contract shall be completed as well as the time and manner for the payment for the work. Whenever the Commissioner of Highways or his designee publicly opens and announces all bids received for each invitation to bid, it shall be announced at the same time if the lowest read bid exceeds the maximum tolerance of the Department's estimate for the work represented by that bid.

B. The contract shall require that the contractor comply with all requirements, conditions, and terms of the contract, including environmental permits that are part of the contract. If the contractor violates a contract provision and the violation results in environmental damage or if the contractor violates environmental laws or environmental permits, the Department may suspend the contractor from future bidding or initiate debarment. In addition, the Department may recover either (i) the loss or damage that the Department suffers as a result of such violation or (ii) any liquidated damages established in such contract plus (iii) reasonable attorney fees and expert witness fees. Any damages and costs collected under this section shall be deposited into the Transportation Trust Fund and used for transportation purposes as determined by the Board.

Code 1950, § 33-105; 1958, c. 573; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-191; 1999, c. 405; 2001, cc. 418, 432; 2002, c. 303; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1101. Submission of claims; initial investigation and notice of decision; appearance before Commissioner of Highways; further investigation and notice of decision; settlement.

A. Upon the completion of any contract for the construction of any state highway project awarded by the Board or by the Commissioner of Highways to any contractor, if the contractor fails to receive such settlement as he claims to be entitled to under the contract for himself or for his subcontractors or for persons furnishing materials for the contract for costs and expenses caused by the acts or omissions of the Department, he may, within 60 days after the final estimate date, deliver to the Department, through proper administrative channels as determined by the Department, a written claim for such amount to which he deems himself, his subcontractors, or his material persons entitled under the contract. The final estimate date shall be set forth in a letter from the Department to the contractor sent by certified mail. The claim shall set forth the facts upon which the claim is based, provided that written notice of the contractor's intention to file such claim shall have been given to the Department at the time of the occurrence or beginning of the work upon which the claim and subsequent action is based. Within 90 days from receipt of such claim, the Department shall make an investigation and notify the claimant in writing by certified mail of its decision. The claimant and the Department may, however, mutually extend such 90-day period for another 30 days.

B. If dissatisfied with the decision, the claimant shall, within 30 days from receipt of the Department's decision, notify the Commissioner of Highways, in writing, that he desires to appear before him, either in person or through counsel, and present any additional facts and arguments in support of his claim as previously filed.

C. The Commissioner of Highways shall schedule such appearance to be held within 30 days of receiving the claimant's written request. The claimant and the Commissioner of Highways may, however, mutually agree to schedule such appearance to be held after 30 days but before 60 days from the receipt of the claimant's written request.

D. Within 45 days from the date of the appearance before him, the Commissioner of Highways shall make an investigation of the claim and notify the contractor in writing of his decision. The claimant and the Commissioner of Highways may, however, mutually agree to extend such 45-day period for another 30 days. If the Commissioner of Highways deems that all or any portion of a claim is valid, he shall have the authority to negotiate a settlement with the contractor, but any such settlement shall be subject to the provisions of § 2.2-514.

E. Failure of the Department or the Commissioner of Highways to render a decision within the time period specified in subsections A and D, or within such other period as has been mutually agreed upon as provided in this section, shall be deemed a denial of the claim.

If the Commissioner of Highways determines that a claim has been denied as the result of an administrative oversight, then the Department reserves the right to reconsider the claim.

1976, c. 230, § 33.1-386; 1982, c. 320; 1991, c. 691; 1994, c. 67; 2001, c. 175; 2007, c. 162; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1102. Limitation of suits on contracts.

No suit or action shall be brought against the Department by a contractor or any persons claiming under him or on behalf of a subcontractor of the contractor or a person furnishing materials for the contract to the contractor on any contract executed pursuant to this article or by others on any claim arising from the performance of the contract by the contractor, subcontractor, or person furnishing materials to the contractor, unless the claimant has exhausted the review process provided by § 33.2-1101. Further, no such suit or action shall be brought unless such suit or action is brought within 12 months from receipt of the decision of the Commissioner of Highways. In no event shall any delay therein on the part of the contractor, subcontractor, or person furnishing materials be construed as a reason for extending the time within which such suit or action must be brought. In any case brought against the Department on behalf of a subcontractor or person furnishing materials to the contractor, lack of privity between the parties shall be no defense; however, any such case brought on behalf of a subcontractor or person furnishing materials to the contractor shall only be brought for costs and expenses caused by the acts or omissions of the Department and shall not be brought for costs and expenses caused by the contractor.

1976, c. 230, § 33.1-192.1; 1982, c. 647; 1991, c. 691; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1103. Civil action.

As to such portion of the claim as is denied by the Commissioner of Highways, the contractor may institute a civil action for such sum as he claims to be entitled to under the contract for himself or for his subcontractors or for persons furnishing materials for the contract by the filing of a petition in the Circuit Court of the City of Richmond or where the highway project that is the subject of the contract is located. Any civil action brought on behalf of a subcontractor or person furnishing materials for the contract shall only be brought for costs and expenses caused by the acts or omissions of the Department and shall not be brought for costs and expenses caused by the contractor. Trial shall be by the court without a jury. The submission of the claim to the Department within the time and as set out in § 33.2-1101 shall be a condition precedent to bringing an action under this article and the Department shall be allowed to assert any and all defenses in a case brought by or on behalf of the subcontractor or a person furnishing materials to the contractor which are available to the contractor.

1976, c. 230, § 33.1-387; 1982, c. 320; 1991, c. 691; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1104. Application of article; existing contracts.

The provisions of this article shall apply to all contracts executed and proceedings initiated after June 30, 1976, and may be made applicable to existing contracts by mutual consent of the contracting parties.

1976, c. 230, § 33.1-388; 1982, c. 320; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1105. Provisions of article deemed part of contract.

The provisions of this article shall be deemed to enter into and form a part of every contract entered into between the Board and any contractor on or after July 1, 1976, and no provision in said contracts shall be valid that is in conflict herewith.

1976, c. 230, § 33.1-389; 2014, c. 805.

Article 2. Highway Contractors' Association.

§ 33.2-1106. Definitions.

For the purposes of this article:

"Highway contractors' association" means any association, bureau, agency, or other medium, incorporated or unincorporated, whose object or work is to promote the common welfare of, furnish information to, promote cooperation among, stimulate the demand for the services of, or advertise the members thereof.

"Member of highway contractors' association" means any individual partnership, or corporation engaged in contracting for the construction, repair, and maintenance of highways and highway bridges and for supplying labor, material, machinery, and supplies for use in highways and bridges that is a member of, stockholder in, subscriber of, or contributor to, or that is in any way affiliated with, any highway contractors' association.

Code 1950, §§ 33-270, 33-271; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-336, 33.1-337; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1107. Statements to be furnished.

Every highway contractors' association domiciled in the Commonwealth shall, upon request from the Secretary of the Commonwealth, within 30 days of such request, but no more often than once a calendar year, furnish in writing to the Secretary of the Commonwealth the following information:

1. The names and post office addresses of all of its members. When any member is a firm, the names and addresses of the members of the firm shall be furnished. When any member is a corporation, the names of the officers of the corporation shall be furnished.

2. The names and post office addresses of the officers of the highway contractors' association and the duties and salaries of the officers.

3. The property and income of the highway contractors' association and by whom the same is paid.

4. An itemized statement of the expenditures of such association.

5. A copy of the charter and bylaws, if incorporated, and a copy of the constitution and bylaws, if unincorporated, of such association.

Such statements shall become public records.

Code 1950, § 33-272; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-338; 1977, c. 206; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1108. Papers, accounts, and records open to examination by certain officers.

All papers, accounts, and records of every nature of every highway contractors' association, a member of which submits a bid for any construction, maintenance, or repair of any public highway or bridge or for the supplying of labor, material, or supplies for any such construction, repair, or maintenance, whether such highway association is domiciled in Virginia or is a foreign highway contractors' association doing business in Virginia, shall be at all times during business hours open to examination and inspection by the Governor, the Attorney General, the Comptroller, the Auditor of Public Accounts, the Board and any member thereof, and the duly authorized agent or representative of any of such officers or of the Board.

Code 1950, § 33-273; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-339; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1109. Effect of refusal to permit or withholding from examination of papers, etc.

If any highway contractors' association, whether domiciled in Virginia or not, on application of any person authorized by this article to examine and inspect its records, refuses to permit such examination and inspection of its papers, accounts, and records, or fails to produce at its principal office for examination and inspection any of its papers, accounts, or records when requested so to do, or knowingly withholds from examination and inspection any of its papers, accounts, and records, for the purpose of secreting any of its acts or activities or the amount or sources of or the use made of its revenue, the person requesting or making such examination and inspection shall report the fact to the Governor, who shall certify the fact to the Commissioner of Highways.

No contract for highway or highway bridge construction, repair, or maintenance or for the supplying of any labor, materials, or supplies for such construction, repair, or maintenance shall be thereafter let to any member of such association until the Governor has certified to the Board that a full examination and inspection of the papers, accounts, and records of such association has been made with the free consent and cooperation of such association and that such examination and inspection discloses nothing in the purposes, methods, or activities of such association detrimental to the public interest or tending to prevent competition in or increase the cost of highway and highway bridge construction, repair, or maintenance in the Commonwealth and that none of its revenue has been used for political purposes.

Code 1950, § 33-274; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-340; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1110. Effect of using certain methods or engaging in certain activities.

If upon any such inspection or examination as is provided for in this article it is found that any highway contractors' association of which any individual, partnership, or corporation holding a contract for the construction, maintenance, or repair of any public highway or bridge or for supplying any labor, materials, or supplies for any such construction, repair, or maintenance is a member has made use of methods or engaged in activities tending to prevent competition in the bidding on such contract or to increase the cost of such contract to the Commonwealth or county or has brought to bear or endeavored to bring to bear political influence to secure for such member such contract, then the Board may, at its option, cancel and annul such contract, paying thereon for the work done or labor, material, and supplies furnished only the reasonable value of the work done or labor, material, and supplies furnished.

Code 1950, § 33-275; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-341; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1111. Certificate to be filed with bid for highway or bridge construction, etc.

Every individual, partnership, or corporation bidding upon any proposed contract for the construction, repair, or maintenance of any part of any public highway or bridge and for supplying any labor, material, or supplies to be used in any such construction, repair, or maintenance shall file with such bid a sworn statement giving the name and location of the principal office of every highway contractors' association of which it is or has been a member during the preceding 12 months. No bid not accompanied by such certificate shall be considered by the Board or the Commissioner of Highways in letting any contract bid upon, nor shall any such contract be let by the Board or the Commissioner of Highways to any bidder failing to file the certificate required by this section.

Code 1950, § 33-276; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-342; 2013, cc. 585, 646; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1112. Affidavit to be filed with bid upon work.

Every member of any highway contractors' association who bids upon any work let by the Board or the Commissioner of Highways shall file with his bid an affidavit in substance as follows: that the bidder neither directly nor indirectly has entered into any combination or arrangement with any person, firm, or corporation or entered into any agreement the effect of which is to prevent competition or increase the cost of construction or maintenance of highways or bridges.

The Board or the Commissioner or Highways shall prescribe the form of this affidavit and no bid shall be accepted unless accompanied by such affidavit.

Code 1950, § 33-277; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-343; 2013, cc. 585, 646; 2014, c. 805.

Chapter 12. Outdoor Advertising in Sight of Public Highways.

Article 1. General Policies and Regulations.

§ 33.2-1200. Policy; definitions.

A. In order to promote the safety, convenience, and enjoyment of travel on and protection of the public investment in highways within the Commonwealth, attract tourists and promote the prosperity, economic well-being, and general welfare of the Commonwealth, and preserve and enhance the natural scenic beauty or aesthetic features of the highways and adjacent areas, the General Assembly declares it to be the policy of the Commonwealth that the erection and maintenance of outdoor advertising in areas adjacent to the rights-of-way of the highways within the Commonwealth shall be regulated in accordance with the terms of this article and regulations promulgated by the Board pursuant thereto.

B. As used in this article, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Advertisement" means any writing, printing, picture, painting, display, emblem, drawing, sign, or similar device that is posted or displayed outdoors on real property and is intended to invite or to draw the attention of or solicit the patronage or support of the public to any goods, merchandise, real or personal property, business, services, entertainment, or amusement manufactured, produced, bought, sold, conducted, furnished, or dealt in by any person. "Advertisement" includes any part of an advertisement recognizable as such.

"Advertising structure" means any rigid or semirigid material, with or without any advertisement displayed thereon, situated upon or attached to real property outdoors, primarily or principally for the purpose of furnishing a background or base or support upon which an advertisement may be posted or displayed.

"Area of an advertising structure" means the area determined from its outside measurements, excluding as a part thereof the height and overall width of supports and supporting structure and any other portion or portions thereof beneath the normal area upon which an advertisement is posted or intended to be posted.

"Billboard sign" means any sign, advertisement, or advertising structure as defined in this section owned by a person, firm, or corporation in the business of outdoor advertising.

"Business of outdoor advertising" means the erection, use, or maintenance of advertising structures or the posting or display of outdoor advertisements by any person who receives profit gained from rentals or any other compensation from any other person for the use or maintenance of such advertising structures or the posting or display of such advertisements, except reasonable compensation for materials and labor used or furnished in the actual erection of advertising structures or the actual posting of advertisements. "Business of outdoor advertising" does not include the leasing or rental of advertising structures or advertisements used to advertise products, services, or entertainment sold or provided on the premises where the advertising structures or advertisement is located.

"Centerline of the highway" means a line equidistant from the edges of the median separating the main traveled ways of a divided highway or the centerline of the main traveled way of a nondivided highway.

"Distance from edge of a right-of-way" means the horizontal distance measured along a line normal or perpendicular to the centerline of the highway.

"Federal-aid primary highway" means any highway within that portion of the primary state highway system as established and maintained under Article 2 (§ 33.2-310 et seq.) of Chapter 3, including extensions of such system within municipalities, that has been approved by the Secretary of Transportation pursuant to 23 U.S.C. § 103(b), as that system existed on June 1, 1991.

"Highway" means every way or place of whatever nature open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel in the Commonwealth.

"Historic place, museum, or shrine" includes only places that are maintained wholly at public expense or by a nonprofit organization.

"Information center" means an area or site established and maintained at rest areas for the purpose of informing the public of places of interest within the Commonwealth and providing such other information as the Commonwealth may consider desirable.

"Interchange" means a grade separated intersection with one or more turning roadways for travel between intersection legs, or an intersection at grade, where two or more highways join or cross.

"Lawfully erected" means any sign that was erected pursuant to the issuance of a permit from the Commissioner of Highways under § 33.2-1208, unless the local governing body has evidence of noncompliance with ordinances in effect at the time the sign was erected.

"Legible" means capable of being read without visual aid by a person of normal visual acuity.

"Maintain" means to allow to exist.

"Main traveled way" means the traveled way of a highway on which through traffic is carried. In the case of a divided highway, the traveled way of each of the separated roadways for traffic in opposite directions is a main traveled way. "Main traveled way" does not include such facilities as frontage roads, turning roadways, or parking areas.

"National Highway System" means the federal-aid highway system referenced in 23 U.S.C. § 103(b), and regulations adopted pursuant thereto. For the purpose of this article, outdoor advertising controls on the National Highway System shall be implemented as those highways are designated and approved by congressional action or designation by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation and such designation and approval shall be kept on file in the central office of the Department of Transportation and placed in the minutes of the Commonwealth Transportation Board by the Commissioner of Highways. Prior to congressional approval or designation by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, highways classified as National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, Interstate System, or federal-aid primary highway as defined in this section shall be considered as the National Highway System.

"Nonconforming sign," "nonconforming advertisement," or "nonconforming advertising structure" means one that was lawfully erected adjacent to any highway in the Commonwealth but that does not comply with the provisions of state law, state regulations, or ordinances adopted by local governing bodies passed at a later date or that later fails to comply with state law, state regulations, or ordinances adopted by local governing bodies due to changed conditions.

"Person" includes an individual, partnership, association, or corporation.

"Post" means post, display, print, paint, burn, nail, paste, or otherwise attach.

"Real property" includes any property physically attached or annexed to real property in any manner whatsoever.

"Rest area" means an area or site established and maintained within or adjacent to the right-of-way or under public supervision or control for the convenience of the traveling public.

"Scenic area" means any public park or area of particular scenic beauty or historical significance designated as a scenic area by the Board.

"Sign" means any outdoor sign, display, device, figure, painting, drawing, message, placard, poster, billboard, or other thing that is designed, intended, or used to advertise or inform, any part of the advertising or informative contents of which is visible from any highway.

"Trade name" includes a brand name, trademark, distinctive symbol, or other similar device or thing used to identify particular products or services.

"Traveled way" means the portion of a roadway for the movement of vehicles, exclusive of shoulders.

"Turning roadway" means a connecting roadway for traffic turning between two intersection legs of an interchange.

"Urban area" means an urbanized area or, in the case of an urbanized area encompassing more than one state, that part of the urbanized area within the Commonwealth, or an urban place.

"Urbanized area" means an area so designated by the U.S. Census Bureau, within boundaries fixed by the Commissioner of Highways, in his discretion, in cooperation with the governing bodies of the localities affected and the appropriate federal authority. Such boundaries shall, at a minimum, encompass the entire urbanized area within a state as designated by the U.S. Census Bureau.

"Urban place" means an area so designated by the U.S. Census Bureau having a population of 5,000 or more and not within any urbanized area, within boundaries fixed by the Commissioner of Highways, in his discretion, in cooperation with the governing bodies of the localities affected and the appropriate federal authority. Such boundaries shall, at a minimum, encompass the entire urban place designated by the U.S. Census Bureau.

"Virginia byway" and "scenic highway" means those highways designated by the Board pursuant to § 33.2-405. For the purposes of this article, a Virginia byway means a scenic byway as referenced in 23 U.S.C. § 131(s).

"Visible" means capable of being seen (whether or not legible) without visual aid by a person of normal visual acuity.

Code 1950, §§ 33-298, 33-310; 1954, c. 588; 1960, c. 406; 1962, c. 176; 1966, c. 663; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-351, 33.1-363; 1976, c. 14; 1980, c. 275; 1984, c. 750; 1993, c. 538; 1996, c. 777; 2000, cc. 432, 449; 2002, c. 672; 2012, c. 145; 2013, c. 127; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1201. Enforcement of provisions by Commissioner of Highways.

The Commissioner of Highways shall administer and enforce the provisions of this article. He may assign to division engineers and other employees in the Department such duties other than discretionary powers as he may deem appropriate.

Code 1950, § 33-299; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-352; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1202. Territory to which article applies.

The territory under the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Highways for the purposes of this article shall include all of the Commonwealth, exclusive of that portion thereof that lies within the corporate limits of municipalities, except the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Highways shall apply to all the territory within municipalities on which signs, advertisements, or advertising structures are visible from the main traveled way of any Interstate System highway, federal-aid primary highway as that system existed on June 1, 1991, or National Highway System highway.

Code 1950, § 33-300; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-353; 1993, c. 538; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1203. Entry upon lands; hindering Commissioner of Highways or agent.

The Commissioner of Highways and all employees under his direction may enter upon such lands as may be necessary in the performance of their functions and duties as prescribed by this article. Any person who hinders or obstructs the Commissioner of Highways or any assistant or agent of the Commissioner of Highways in carrying out such functions and duties is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Code 1950, § 33-301; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-354; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1204. Excepted signs, advertisements, and advertising structures.

The following signs and advertisements, if securely attached to real property or advertising structures, and the advertising structures or parts thereof upon which they are posted or displayed are excepted from all the provisions of this article except those enumerated in §§ 33.2-1202, 33.2-1205, and 33.2-1208, subdivisions 2 through 12 of § 33.2-1216, and §§ 33.2-1217, 33.2-1224, and 33.2-1227:

1. Advertisements securely attached to a place of business or residence and no more than 10 advertising structures, with a combined total area of such advertisements and advertising structures, exclusive of the area occupied by the name of the business, owner, or lessee, of no more than 500 square feet, erected or maintained, or caused to be erected or maintained, by the owner or lessee of such place of business or residence, within 250 feet of such place of business or residence or located on the real property of such place of business or residence and relating solely to merchandise, services, or entertainment sold, produced, manufactured, or furnished at such place of business or residence;

2. Signs erected or maintained, or caused to be erected or maintained, on any farm by the owner or lessee of such farm and relating solely to farm produce, merchandise, services, or entertainment sold, produced, manufactured, or furnished on such farm;

3. Signs upon real property posted or displayed by the owner, or by the authority of the owner, stating that the property upon which the sign is located, or a part of such property, is for sale or rent or stating any data pertaining to such property and its appurtenances and the name and address of the owner and the agent of such owner;

4. Official notices or advertisements posted or displayed by or under the direction of any public or court officer in the performance of his official or directed duties or by trustees under deeds of trust, deeds of assignment, or other similar instruments;

5. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, danger or precautionary signs relating to the premises or signs warning of the condition of or dangers of travel on a highway erected or authorized by the Commissioner of Highways; forest fire warning signs erected under authority of the State Forester; and signs, notices, or symbols erected by the United States government under the direction of the U.S. Forest Service;

6. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, notices of any telephone company, telegraph company, railroad, bridges, ferries, or other transportation company necessary in the discretion of the Commissioner of Highways for the safety of the public or for the direction of the public to such utility or to any place to be reached by it;

7. Signs, notices, or symbols for the information of aviators as to location, direction, and landings and conditions affecting safety in aviation erected or authorized by the Commissioner of Highways;

8. Signs of 16 square feet or less and bearing an announcement of any locality, or historic place, museum, or shrine situated in the Commonwealth advertising itself or local industries, meetings, buildings, or attractions, provided such signs are maintained wholly at public expense or at the expense of such historic place, museum, or shrine;

9. Signs or notices of two square feet or less placed at a junction of two or more highways in the primary state highway system denoting only the distance or direction of a church, residence, or place of business, provided such signs or notices do not exceed a reasonable number in the discretion of the Commissioner of Highways;

10. Signs or notices erected or maintained upon property giving the name of the owner, lessee, or occupant of the premises;

11. Advertisements and advertising structures within the corporate limits of cities and towns, except as specified in § 33.2-1202;

12. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, historical markers erected by duly constituted and authorized public authorities;

13. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, highway markers and signs erected or caused to be erected by the Commissioner of Highways or the Board or other authorities in accordance with law;

14. Signs erected upon property warning the public against hunting, fishing, or trespassing thereon;

15. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, signs erected by Red Cross authorities relating to Red Cross Emergency Stations, with authority hereby expressly given for the erection and maintenance of such signs upon the right-of-way of all highways in the Commonwealth at such locations as may be approved by the Commissioner of Highways;

16. Signs advertising agricultural products and horticultural products, or either, when such products are produced by the person who erects and maintains the signs, provided that restriction of the location and number of such signs shall be in the sole discretion of the Commissioner of Highways;

17. Signs advertising only the name, time, and place of bona fide agricultural, county, district, or state fairs, together with announcements of related special events that do not consume more than 50 percent of the display area of such signs, provided the person who posts the signs or causes them to be posted shall post a cash bond as may be prescribed by the Commissioner of Highways adequate to reimburse the Commonwealth for the actual cost of removing such signs that are not removed within 30 days after the last day of the fair so advertised;

18. Signs of no more than eight square feet, or one sign structure containing more than one sign of no more than eight square feet, that denote only the name of a civic service club or church, location and directions for reaching same, and time of meeting of such organization, provided such signs or notices do not exceed a reasonable number as determined by the Commissioner of Highways;

19. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, signs containing advertisements or notices that have been authorized by a county and that are securely affixed to a public transit passenger shelter that is owned by that county, provided that no advertisement shall be placed within the right-of-way of the Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary system of highways in violation of federal law. The prohibition in subdivision 7 of § 33.2-1216 against placing signs within 15 feet of the nearest edge of the pavement of any highway shall not apply to such signs. The Commissioner of Highways may require the removal of any particular sign located on such a shelter as provided in this subdivision if, in his judgment, such sign constitutes a safety hazard; and

20. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1205, signs containing advertisements or notices that have been authorized by a county and that are located on public park property or school property that is owned by that county, provided that no advertisement or notice is visible from the main traveled way of the National Highway System in violation of federal law.

Code 1950, § 33-302; 1954, c. 588; 1960, c. 406; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-355; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 8; 1972, c. 158; 1990, c. 196; 1993, c. 538; 1996, c. 125; 2003, c. 321; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 607; 2018, c. 794.

§ 33.2-1205. License required of outdoor advertisers.

No person shall engage or continue in the business of outdoor advertising in the Commonwealth outside the corporate limits of municipalities or within the corporate limits of municipalities if their off-premises sign, advertisement, or advertising structure is visible from the main traveled way of any Interstate System, federal-aid primary, or National Highway System highway without first obtaining a license therefor from the Commissioner of Highways. The fee for such license hereby imposed for revenue for the use of the Commonwealth shall be $500 per year, payable annually in advance. Applications for licenses or renewal of licenses shall be made on forms furnished by the Commissioner of Highways, shall contain such information as the Commissioner of Highways may require, and shall be accompanied by the annual fee. Licenses granted under this section shall expire on December 31 of each year and shall not be prorated. Applications for renewal of licenses shall be made not less than 30 days prior to the date of expiration. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require any person that advertises upon a structure or fixture on its property or a licensed advertiser's structure or other space to obtain a license.

Code 1950, § 33-303; 1954, c. 588; 1964, c. 619; 1968, c. 519; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-356; 1979, c. 216; 1993, c. 538; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1206. Revocation of license and judicial review.

A. The Commissioner of Highways may after 30 days' notice in writing to the licensee revoke any license granted by him upon repayment of a proportionate part of the license fee in any case in which he finds that any of the information required to be given in the application for the license is knowingly false or misleading or that the licensee has violated any of the provisions of this article, unless such licensee, before the expiration of such 30 days, corrects such false or misleading information and complies with the provisions of this article.

B. Any person whose license is so revoked is entitled to judicial review of such revocation in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.). Any person aggrieved by such judgment shall have the right of appeal to the Court of Appeals.

Code 1950, §§ 33-304, 33-305; 1970, c. 322, §§ 33.1-357, 33.1-358; 1984, c. 703; 1986, c. 615; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1207. Bond required from out-of-state licensee.

No license to engage or continue in the business of outdoor advertising shall be granted to any person having its principal place of business outside the Commonwealth or that is incorporated outside the Commonwealth for the posting or display of any advertisement or the erection, use, or maintenance of any advertising structure until such person has furnished and filed with the Commissioner of Highways a bond payable to the Commonwealth, with surety approved by the Commissioner of Highways and in a form approved by the Attorney General, in the sum of $1,000, conditioned that such licensee fulfills all requirements of law and the regulations and orders of the Commissioner of Highways relating to the display of advertisements or the erection of advertising structures. Such bond remains in full force and effect so long as any obligations of such licensee to the Commonwealth remain unsatisfied.

Code 1950, § 33-306; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-359; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1208. Permits required.

Except as otherwise provided in this article, no person, whether engaged in the business of outdoor advertising or not, shall erect, use, maintain, post, or display any advertisement or advertising structure outside municipalities in the Commonwealth without first obtaining a permit therefor from the Commissioner of Highways and paying the annual fee therefor, as provided in this article. A permit is required for an off-premises sign, advertisement, or advertising structure authorized by § 33.2-1217 if it is located within a municipality and is visible from the main traveled way of any Interstate System, federal-aid primary, or National Highway System highway.

No bond or permit is required for the posting or display of any advertisement posted or displayed on any advertising structure or space for which a permit has been issued or renewed for the then-current calendar year under the provisions of this article unless such permit has been revoked.

Code 1950, § 33-307; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-360; 1993, c. 538; 2012, c. 145; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1209. Applications for permits; fees.

A. A separate application for a permit shall be made for each separate advertisement or advertising structure, on a form furnished by the Commissioner of Highways, which application shall be signed by the applicant or his representative duly authorized in writing to act for him and shall describe and set forth the size, shape, and nature of the advertisement or advertising structure it is proposed to post, display, erect, or maintain and its actual or proposed location with sufficient accuracy to enable the Commissioner of Highways to identify such advertisement or advertising structure and to find its actual or proposed location.

B. Each application shall be accompanied by an application fee in an amount determined on the basis of the area of the advertisement or advertising structure for which the permit is sought, according to the following schedule:

1. $15 if such area does not exceed 74 square feet;

2. $30 if such area exceeds 74 square feet but does not exceed 1,824 square feet; and

3. $165 if such area exceeds 1,824 square feet.

In the computation of fees under this subsection, each side of the advertisement or advertising structure used or constructed to be used shall be separately considered. If the applicant elects to use an electronic application, the fee shall be reduced by $5 per application.

The fee shall be retained by the Commissioner of Highways if the permit is issued. If the permit is refused, the Commissioner of Highways shall refund one-half of the application fee to the applicant.

C. In addition to the fees required by subsection B, on any original application for an advertisement or advertising structure there shall be imposed an inspection charge of $50 for any advertisement or advertising structure to be located on an Interstate System, federal-aid primary, or National Highway System highway and $25 for any advertisement or advertising structure to be located on any other highway.

D. Each application shall be accompanied by the written consent, or in lieu thereof a copy certified by an officer authorized to take acknowledgments to deeds in the Commonwealth, of the owner of the real property upon which such advertisement or advertising structure is to be erected, used, maintained, posted, or displayed, or of such other person having the legal right to grant such consent, or of the duly authorized agent of such owner or other person, except that in the marsh or meadowland owned by the Commonwealth along either side of the causeway leading from the mainland to the Town of Chincoteague, the legal right to grant such consent shall be vested in the local governing body of such town.

E. Application shall be made in like manner for a permit to use, maintain, or display an existing advertisement or advertising structure.

Code 1950, § 33-308; 1954, c. 588; 1959, Ex. Sess., c. 20; 1964, c. 619; 1968, c. 519; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-361; 1979, c. 216; 1993, c. 538; 2012, c. 145; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1210. Duration and renewal of permit.

Except as provided in § 33.2-1212, permits issued in accordance with this article shall run for the calendar year and may be renewed upon application made upon forms furnished by the Commissioner of Highways and the payment of the same fee required to be paid upon application for a permit. Fees for renewal of permits using the Department's electronic application renewal process shall be reduced by $5 per permit being renewed. Permits shall not be extended or renewed in cases where the permittee has not exercised the privilege of erecting such advertising structure or displayed such advertisement during the period for which the permit was issued. Annual permits issued after December 15 shall cover the following calendar year.

Code 1950, § 33-309; 1954, c. 588; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-362; 2012, c. 145; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1211. Revocation of permit.

The Commissioner of Highways may, after 30 days' notice in writing to the permittee, revoke any permit issued by him under § 33.2-1208 upon repayment of a proportionate part of the fee in any case in which it appears to the Commissioner of Highways that the application for the permit contains knowingly false or misleading information, that the permittee has failed to keep in a good general condition and in a reasonable state of repair the advertisement or advertising structure for which such permit was issued, or that the permittee has violated any of the provisions of this article, unless such permittee, before the expiration of such 30 days, corrects such false or misleading information or makes the necessary repairs or improvement in the general condition of such advertisement or advertising structure or complies with the provisions of this article. If the erection, maintenance, and display of any advertisement or advertising structure for which a permit is issued by the Commissioner of Highways and the permit fee has been paid as above provided is prevented by any zoning board, commission, or other public agency that also has jurisdiction over the proposed advertisement or advertising structure or its site, the application fee for such advertisement or advertising structure shall be returned by the Commissioner of Highways and the permit revoked. However, one-half of the application fee shall be deemed to have accrued upon the erection of an advertising structure or the display of an advertisement followed by an inspection by the Commissioner of Highways or his representative.

Code 1950, § 33-311; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-364; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1212. Temporary permit.

In any case in which an applicant for a permit certifies in his application that he is unable to state the actual or proposed location of the advertisement or advertising structure or to file the written consent of the landowner or other person having the legal right to the real estate upon which the advertisement or advertising structure is to be erected, used, maintained, posted, or displayed, the Commissioner of Highways shall issue to such applicant a temporary permit, which shall expire 60 days from the date of issue, together with the proper identification number to be attached to such advertisement or advertising structure. Applications for temporary permits must indicate the county and route on which the advertisement or advertising structure is to be located and must be accompanied by a fee of $2 to cover the cost of issuance of the temporary permit. If within such 60 days the applicant files with the Commissioner of Highways an application setting forth all of the information required in § 33.2-1209, together with the required fees, the Commissioner of Highways shall issue to such applicant a permit. In the event that the permit is not issued, the fees submitted shall be returned, except the $2 for the temporary permit.

Code 1950, § 33-312; 1954, c. 588; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-365; 1979, c. 216; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1213. Appeal from refusal or revocation of permit.

Any person aggrieved by any action of the Commissioner of Highways in refusing to grant or in revoking a permit under § 33.2-1209 or 33.2-1211 may appeal from the decision of the Commissioner of Highways in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.).

Code 1950, § 33-313; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-366; 1986, c. 615; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1214. Transfer of licenses and permits to successor concerns.

Any license or permit issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to any person that acquires as a successor the business of the person for whom such license or permit was issued.

Code 1950, § 33-314; 1954, c. 588; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-367; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1215. Identification of advertising structure or advertisement.

The Commissioner of Highways shall require that each advertising structure and each advertisement not posted or displayed on an advertising structure bear an identification number furnished by the Commissioner of Highways and, if erected, maintained, or displayed by a licensed outdoor advertiser, also bear its name. The Commissioner of Highways shall make suitable provisions for the details thereof.

Code 1950, § 33-316; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-368; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1216. Certain advertisements or structures prohibited.

No advertisement or advertising structure shall be erected, maintained, or operated:

1. Within 660 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Colonial National Parkway, the Mount Vernon Boulevard, or any other parkway within the Commonwealth or within 660 feet of any public cemetery, public park reservation, public playground, national forest, or state forest, outside the limits of any municipality; however, any advertisement or advertising structure that is lawfully in place on April 6, 1966, and that does not conform to the 660-foot distance requirement may be maintained for the life of the advertisement or advertising structure;

2. That involves motion or rotation of any part of the structure, moving reflective disks, or running animation or that displays an intermittent light or lights visible from any highway. The prohibition of this subdivision shall not apply to (i) an advertisement or advertisement structure with messages that change no more than once every four seconds and that is consistent with agreements entered into between the Commissioner of Highways and the U.S. Department of Transportation or (ii) an on-premises advertisement or advertising structure with messages displayed as scrolling words or numbers;

3. That uses the words "stop" or "danger" prominently displayed or presents or implies the need or requirement of stopping or the existence of danger on any highway or that is a copy or imitation of official highway signs;

4. That, within visible distance of any highway, advertises any county, city, town, historic place, museum, or shrine without the consent in writing of such county, city, or town or of the owner of such historic place or shrine;

5. That is mobile and is designed to and effectively does distract the attention of passing motorists on any highway by flashing lights, loud and blatant noises, or movable objects;

6. That involves red, green, or amber lights or reflectorized material and resembles traffic signal lights or traffic control signs and is within visible distance of any highway;

7. Within 15 feet of the nearest edge of the pavement of any highway; however, the Commissioner of Highways may waive this restriction whenever the advertisement or advertising structure is actually anchored outside of the right-of-way and, within his discretion, does not constitute a safety hazard or conflict with any other restriction contained in this section;

8. At any public road intersection in such a manner as would obstruct the clear vision in either direction between a point on the centerline of the side road 20 feet from the nearest edge of the pavement of the main road and points on the main road 400 feet distant, measured along the nearest edge of the pavement of the main road;

9. At any grade intersection of a public road and a railroad in such a manner as would obstruct the clear vision in either direction within triangular areas formed by (i) a point at the center of the railroad-public road intersection, (ii) a point on the public road 400 feet from the center of the railroad-public road intersection as measured along the center of the public road, and (iii) a point on the railroad 500 feet from the center of the railroad-public road intersection as measured along the center of the railroad;

10. At or near any curve in a road in such a manner as to obstruct the clear vision of traffic from any one point on such curve to any other point not more than 400 feet apart, as measured between each point from the nearest edge of the pavement;

11. That advertises activities that are illegal under state or federal laws or regulations in effect at the location of such sign or advertisement or at the location of such activities;

12. That is obsolete or inconsistent with this article or regulations adopted by the Board pursuant to this article; or

13. After December 18, 1991, adjacent to any Interstate System, federal-aid primary, or National Highway System highway in the Commonwealth that has been designated as a Virginia byway or scenic highway, except directional and official signs and notices defined in this article and regulations adopted pursuant to this article, on-premises signs, and signs advertising the sale or lease of property upon which they are located.

Code 1950, § 33-317; 1954, c. 588; 1956, c. 676; 1958, c. 369; 1960, c. 406; 1966, c. 663; 1968, c. 230; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-369; 1976, c. 14; 1977, c. 219; 1993, c. 538; 1999, c. 290; 2000, c. 140; 2001, c. 285; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1217. Special provisions pertaining to Interstate System, National Highway System, and federal-aid primary highways.

A. Notwithstanding the territorial limitation set out in § 33.2-1202, no sign or advertisement adjacent to any Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway shall be erected, maintained, or displayed that is visible from the main traveled way within 660 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way, except as provided in subsections B and D, and outside of an urban area, no sign or advertisement beyond 660 feet of the nearest edge of the right-of-way of any Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway that is visible from the main traveled way shall be erected, maintained, or displayed with the purpose of its message being read from the main traveled way, except as set forth in subsection C.

B. The following signs, advertisements, or advertising structures may be erected, maintained, and displayed within 660 feet of the right-of-way of any Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway:

Class 1: Official signs. Directional and official signs and notices, including signs and notices pertaining to the availability of food, lodging, vehicle service and tourist information, natural wonders, scenic areas, museums, and historic attractions, as authorized or required by law; however, where such signs or notices pertain to facilities or attractions that are barrier free, such signs or notices shall contain the International Symbol of Access. The Board shall determine the type, lighting, size, location, number, and other requirements of signs of this class.

Class 2: On-premises signs. Signs not prohibited by other parts of this article that are consistent with the applicable provisions of this section and that advertise the sale or lease of, or activities being conducted upon, the real property where the signs are located, provided that any such signs that are located adjacent to and within 660 feet of any Interstate System highway and do not lie in commercial or industrial zones within the boundaries of incorporated municipalities, as such boundaries existed on September 21, 1959, wherein the use of real property adjacent to the Interstate System is subject to municipal regulation or control, or in areas where land use as of September 21, 1959, was clearly established by state law as industrial or commercial, shall comply with the following requirements:

1. Not more than one sign advertising the sale or lease of the same property may be erected or maintained in such manner as to be visible to traffic proceeding in any one direction on any one Interstate System highway;

2. Not more than one sign visible to traffic proceeding in any one direction on any one Interstate System highway and advertising activities being conducted upon the real property where the sign is located may be erected or maintained more than 50 feet from the advertised activity; and

3. No sign, except one that is not more than 50 feet from the advertised activity, that displays any trade name that refers to or identifies any service rendered or product sold may be erected or maintained unless the name of the advertised activity is displayed as conspicuously as such trade name.

Class 3: Other signs. Any signs or advertisements that are located within areas adjacent to any Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway that are zoned industrial or commercial under authority of state law or in unzoned commercial or industrial areas as determined by the Board from actual land uses. The Board shall determine the size, lighting, and spacing of signs of this class, provided that such determination shall be no more restrictive than valid federal requirements on the same subject.

C. The following signs, advertisements, or advertising structures may be erected, maintained, and displayed beyond 660 feet of the right-of-way of any Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway outside urban areas:

1. Class 1 and Class 2 signs, advertisements, or advertising structures set forth in subsection B.

2. All other signs, advertisements, or advertising structures erected, maintained, or displayed more than 660 feet from the nearest edge of the right-of-way of an Interstate System, National Highway System, or federal-aid primary highway, unless such sign or advertisement is visible from the main traveled way of such highways and erected, maintained, or displayed with the purpose of its message being read from the main traveled way of such highways.

In determining whether a sign, advertisement, or advertising structure is "erected, maintained, or displayed with the purpose of its message being read," the Commissioner of Highways shall consider, at a minimum, the nature of the business or product advertised thereon, the availability of such business or product to users of the controlled highway, and the visibility of the sign, advertisement, or advertising structure from the main traveled way of the controlled highway. Such visibility may be measured by considering the size or height of the sign, advertisement, or advertising structure; the configuration, size, and height of recognizable emblems, images, and lettering thereon; the angle of the sign, advertisement, or advertising structure to the main traveled way of the controlled highway; the degree to which physical obstructions hinder the view of the sign, advertisement, or advertising structure from the main traveled way of the controlled highway; and the time during which such sign, advertisement, or advertising structure is exposed to view by travelers on the main traveled way of the controlled highway traveling at the maximum and minimum speeds posted.

D. In order to provide information in the specific interest of the traveling public, the Department is authorized to maintain maps, permit informational directories and advertising pamphlets to be made available at rest areas, and establish information centers at rest areas for the purpose of informing the public of places of interest within the Commonwealth and providing such other information as may be considered desirable.

E. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, lawfully erected and maintained nonconforming signs, advertisements, and advertising structures shall not be removed or eliminated by amortization under state law or local ordinances without compensation as described in subsection F.

F. The Commissioner of Highways is authorized to acquire by purchase, gift, or the power of eminent domain and to pay just compensation upon the removal of nonconforming signs, advertisements, or advertising structures lawfully erected and maintained under state law or state regulations, provided that subsequent to November 6, 1978, whenever any local ordinance that is more restrictive than state law requires the removal of such signs, advertisements, or advertising structures, the local governing body shall initiate the removal of such signs, advertisements, or advertising structures with the Commissioner of Highways, who shall have complete authority to administer the removal of such signs, advertisements, or advertising structures. Upon proof of payment presented to the local governing bodies, the local governing bodies shall reimburse the Commissioner of Highways the funds expended that are associated with the removal of such signs, advertisements, or advertising structures required by local ordinances, less any federal funds received for such purposes. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subsection, nothing shall prohibit the local governing bodies from removing signs, advertisements, or advertising structures that are made nonconforming solely by local ordinances so long as those ordinances require the local governing bodies to pay 100 percent of the cost of removing them and just compensation upon their removal.

Such compensation is authorized to be paid only for the taking from the owner of such sign or advertisement of all right, title, leasehold, and interest in such sign or advertisement and the taking from the owner of the real property on which the sign or advertisement is located of the right to erect and maintain such sign or advertisement thereon.

The Commissioner of Highways shall not be required to expend any funds under this section unless and until federal-aid matching funds are made available for this purpose.

Code 1950, § 33-317.1; 1960, c. 406; 1962, c. 176; 1966, c. 663; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-370; 1976, cc. 14, 29; 1980, c. 275; 1993, c. 538; 2000, cc. 432, 449; 2013, cc. 585, 646; 2014, c. 805; 2018, cc. 352, 353.

§ 33.2-1218. Removal of billboard signs under this chapter prohibited without just compensation.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no billboard sign subject to this chapter may be removed by action of a county, city, or town under Chapter 22 (§ 15.2-2200 et seq.) of Title 15.2 without the payment of just compensation by the county, city, or town unless the billboard sign cannot remain on the property due to the site constraints of the property and removal of the billboard sign is therefore necessary for development on the property. The property owner may terminate the leasehold or other right of the billboard sign to remain on the property in accordance with the terms and conditions of the contract between the property owner and the billboard sign owner, but may not be required to do so by the county, city, or town as a condition of obtaining development approval for the property unless removal of the billboard sign is necessary for development of the property or the billboard sign is nonconforming and is the principal use on the property and the zoning ordinance permits only one principal use on the property.

2003, c. 569, § 33.1-370.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1219. Maintenance and repair of nonconforming billboard signs.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, maintenance of and repairs to nonconforming billboard signs shall be governed by this section and any applicable regulations promulgated by the Commissioner of Highways, known as the "Control and Continuance of Nonconforming Signs, Advertisements, and Advertising Structures." Nonconforming billboard signs shall be maintained in a good state of repair and shall be subject to removal for failure to do so, in accordance with §§ 33.2-1211 and 33.2-1229. In order to make repairs to a nonconforming billboard sign, the owner shall make a written request to the Commissioner of Highways and submit the documentation required by 24VAC30-120-170. The Commissioner of Highways shall review the written request, and if the Commissioner of Highways determines that the cost of requested repairs does not exceed a dollar amount greater than 50 percent of the current replacement cost of the entire billboard sign or structure, the Commissioner of Highways shall provide the owner of the billboard sign with a letter approving the billboard sign repairs. However, in no case shall a nonconforming billboard sign be replaced or rebuilt if the cost of the replacement or rebuilding exceeds 50 percent of the current replacement cost. The owner of the billboard sign shall apply for a building permit from the locality in which the billboard sign is located and provide a copy of the approval letter from the Commissioner of Highways as part of the application for the building permit. The Commissioner's determination as to whether the owner of the billboard sign has complied with this section shall be binding upon the locality unless the building official, for good cause shown, submits to the Commissioner of Highways documentation objecting to the Commissioner's determination within 30 days of the building permit application, with a copy of such documentation being provided to the billboard sign owner. The Commissioner of Highways shall consider any documentation submitted by the building official and shall reissue a determination in accordance with this section, which determination shall be binding upon the locality.

2004, c. 656, § 33.1-370.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1220. Regulations and agreements with United States implementing § 33.2-1217.

The Board may issue regulations and is authorized to enter into agreements with the United States as provided in 23 U.S.C. § 131 with respect to the regulation and control of signs, advertisements, and advertising structures in conformity with § 33.2-1217, provided that such agreements shall not prevent the General Assembly of Virginia from amending or repealing § 33.2-1217 at any time, and provided further that in the event the federal law is amended to lessen the special restrictions applicable to signs, advertisements, and advertising structures adjacent to Interstate System or federal-aid primary highways, the Board is authorized to adopt regulations to conform to such change in federal law and to amend any agreement with the United States relating to such control.

Code 1950, § 33-317.2; 1960, c. 406; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-371; 1976, c. 14; 1984, c. 745; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1221. Selective pruning permits; fees; penalty.

A. As used in this section, "local beautification project" means any project in a locality that includes installation of plant materials, using public or other funds, in any public right-of-way within a county, city, or town.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1202 or any other provision of law:

1. The Commissioner of Highways shall by permit authorize the selective pruning, within highway rights-of-way, as highways are defined in § 33.2-1200, including within corporate limits of municipalities, of vegetation that obstructs motorists' view of signs displayed on outdoor advertising structures legally erected and properly maintained along the highways. Permits authorizing such pruning shall be issued in accordance with this section.

a. All work performed under the permit shall be (i) subject to the direction of the Commissioner of Highways, (ii) supervised on-site by a certified arborist approved by the Commissioner of Highways, (iii) completed to the satisfaction of the Commissioner of Highways, and (iv) performed solely at the expense of the permittee.

b. All pruning shall be performed in a manner that (i) creates a picture frame effect around the sign and (ii) beautifies the area surrounding the advertising structure. All cutting shall be limited to vegetation with trunk base diameters of less than six inches. Pruning cuts of limbs or branches or other vegetation with diameters greater than four inches and clear cutting shall not be authorized and shall be strictly prohibited. Pruning of vegetation in a highway median shall not be permitted where the locality within which the pruning is to be done has a local beautification project in the area within the scope of the selective pruning application; however, relocation or replanting of such vegetation shall be permitted in accordance with a landscaping plan as provided in this section.

c. Any diseased or unsightly vegetation or any vegetation that endangers the health or retards the growth of desirable vegetation may be removed at the discretion of the certified arborist supervising the work. Any such removed vegetation shall be replaced at the permittee's expense with desirable vegetation.

2. The requirements of this section shall not apply to the owner or authorized agent of the owner of any sign, advertisement, or advertising structure exempted from the provisions of this article by § 33.2-1204.

3. The Commissioner of Highways shall promulgate such regulations as he deems necessary or desirable to carry out the provisions of this section. Such regulations shall include the following requirements:

a. Every application for a permit submitted under this section shall be accompanied by photographs of the affected site and a detailed description of work proposed to be performed.

b. A fee of $400 shall accompany every application made to the Commissioner of Highways or, if applicable, to the locality within which the pruning is to be performed. All such fees collected by the Commissioner of Highways shall be paid by the Commissioner of Highways into the state treasury and allocated to the Board.

c. Every applicant shall post a bond payable to the Commonwealth, with surety approved by the Commissioner of Highways and in a form approved by the Attorney General, in the sum of $2,500, conditioned on the permittee's fulfillment of all requirements of the permit.

d. No permit shall be issued under this section in order to create a new site for an outdoor advertising structure.

4. Where the applicant is seeking a vegetation control permit in a locality where the public right-of-way is within the jurisdictional limits of a city or town on a highway or street not within the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Highways under § 33.2-1202 or on a highway or street in a county having the county manager form of government, the Commissioner of Highways shall delegate the administration of this section to that locality, and if so delegated, the locality shall apply the provisions of this section.

5. If there are plant materials in the public right-of-way that are part of a local beautification project, the Commissioner of Highways or the locality, as the case may be, may include a requirement in accordance with the provisions of subdivisions 4 through 7 that as a condition of the issuance of a vegetation control permit for selective pruning, the applicant must submit a landscaping plan showing how the applicant will relocate or replant the vegetation obstructing the motorists' view from the main traveled way of the highway or street of signs displayed on outdoor advertising structures, in lieu of the selective pruning of such plant materials. In the absence of the existence of a local beautification project in the area within the scope of the selective pruning application, no landscaping plan requirement shall be imposed on the applicant.

6. If subdivision 5 is applicable, the applicant shall pay the reasonable costs of implementing the landscaping plan, which may include relocating existing plant materials, purchasing new replacement plant materials, and planting vegetation that will not grow to a height or position in the future so as to obstruct motorists' view from the main traveled way of the highway or street of signs displayed on outdoor advertising structures, as otherwise set out in the landscaping plan.

7. The provisions of subdivisions 4 through 6 shall apply to any local beautification project installed prior to July 1, 2006. On and after July 1, 2006, the locality shall not plant materials that obstruct motorists' view from the main traveled way of the highway or street of signs displayed on outdoor advertising structures. If the local beautification project violates this section, in addition to other applicable penalties, the locality shall bear the costs to bring such beautification project into compliance with this section.

8. The locality shall provide a 30-day written notice to the Commissioner of Highways prior to installation of a local beautification project within the right-of-way of a Department maintained highway that may obstruct the motorists' view of signs displayed on outdoor advertising structures. Such notice shall include a description of the plant materials to be used in, and a copy of the plans for, such beautification project.

9. Any application for vegetation control in compliance with this section submitted to the Commissioner of Highways shall be acted upon within 60 days of submission or shall be deemed approved. Any application for vegetation control in compliance with this section submitted to any city or town or on a highway or street in a county with the county manager form of government shall be acted upon within 60 days of submission or shall be deemed approved. The locality may impose conditions in approval of the landscaping plan consistent with this section and the regulations promulgated thereto. If the locality is not satisfied that the landscaping plan submitted by the applicant complies with this section, the locality may appeal to the Commissioner of Highways prior to the expiration of the 60-day period from the date of submission. If the applicant objects to the conditions imposed by the locality as part of the approval of the landscaping plan, the applicant may appeal to the Commissioner of Highways within 30 days after the final action on the landscaping plan. The appealing party shall submit a written appeal to the Commissioner of Highways, stating the reasons for such appeal, along with a fee of $400. The Commissioner of Highways shall review the landscaping plan and the reasons for the appeal and shall issue a determination in accordance with this section within 30 days after filing of the appeal, which determination shall be binding upon the applicant and the locality.

10. Upon issuance of a vegetation control permit in accordance with this section, the applicant shall give written notice, at least seven days in advance of any site work, as authorized by the permit, of the date and time of the commencement of the site work as approved by the permit. Such written notice shall be given to the Commissioner of Highways unless the public right-of-way is within the jurisdictional limits of a city or town on a highway or street not within the jurisdiction of the Commissioner under § 33.2-1202, in which case the written notice shall be given to the local government official who approved the permit.

11. Any person, firm, or corporation found by a court of competent jurisdiction to have violated any provision of this section, any regulation adopted pursuant to this section, or any permit issued under this section shall be subject to the penalties provided in § 33.2-1229.

1998, cc. 525, 540, § 33.1-371.1; 2006, cc. 512, 543; 2012, cc. 760, 818; 2013, c. 737; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1222. Tree-trimming policies.

The Board shall adopt policies governing the pruning and trimming of trees during nonemergency conditions by the employees, agents, and contractors of the Department of Transportation in order to preserve roadside trees that do not adversely affect highway operations, maintenance, or safety. Such policies shall be developed in consultation with an advisory group whose members shall include representatives of the Department of Transportation, the Department of Forestry, Scenic Virginia, and the American Society of Consulting Arborists and shall be consistent with generally accepted standards recommended by nationally recognized organizations, including the American National Standards Institute.

2001, c. 169, § 33.1-371.2; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1223. Pasting advertisements prohibited in certain instances.

No advertisement shall be pasted or glued on any building, fence, wall, tree, rock, or other similar structure or object unless the same structure or object is an advertising structure for which a permit has been issued and is in effect.

Code 1950, § 33-318; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-372; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1224. Signs or advertising on rocks, poles, etc., within limits of highway; civil penalty.

Any person who in any manner (i) paints, prints, places, puts, or affixes any sign or advertisement upon or to any rock, stone, tree, fence, stump, pole, mile-board, milestone, danger-sign, guide-sign, guidepost, highway sign, historical marker, building, or other object lawfully within the limits of any highway or (ii) erects, paints, prints, places, puts, or affixes any sign or advertisement within the limits of any highway is subject to a civil penalty of $100. Each occurrence shall be subject to a separate penalty. All civil penalties collected under this section shall be paid into the Highway Maintenance and Operating Fund. Signs or advertisements placed within the limits of the highway are hereby declared a public and private nuisance and may be forthwith removed, obliterated, or abated by the Commissioner of Highways or his representatives without notice. The Commissioner of Highways may collect the cost of such removal, obliteration, or abatement from the person erecting, painting, printing, placing, putting, affixing, or using such sign or advertisement. When no one is observed erecting, painting, printing, placing, putting, or affixing such sign or advertisement, the person, firm, or corporation being advertised shall be presumed to have placed the sign or advertisement and shall be punished accordingly. Such presumption, however, shall be rebuttable by competent evidence. In addition, the Commissioner of Highways or his representative may seek to enjoin any recurring violator of this section. The Commissioner of Highways may enter into agreements with any local governing body authorizing local law-enforcement agencies or other local governmental entities to act as agents of the Commissioner of Highways for the purpose of (i) enforcing the provisions of this section and (ii) collecting the penalties and costs provided for in this section. Any such agreement may provide that penalties and costs collected pursuant to such agreement shall be paid as agreed.

The provisions of this section shall not apply to signs or outdoor advertising regulated under other provisions of this chapter.

Code 1950, § 33-319; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-373; 1993, c. 538; 1994, c. 696; 2012, c. 739; 2013, c. 457; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1225. Commissioner of Highways may enter into certain agreements; civil penalties.

A. The Commissioner of Highways may enter into agreements with the local governing body of Fairfax County authorizing local law-enforcement agencies or other local governmental entities to act as agents of the Commissioner of Highways for the purpose of (i) enforcing the provisions of § 33.2-1224 and (ii) collecting the civil penalties and costs provided for in that section. However, the local governing body of Fairfax County shall not enter into any such agreement until it has held a public hearing thereon.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 33.2-1224, the penalties and costs collected under this section shall be paid to Fairfax County.

C. Notwithstanding subsections A and B, signs and advertising promoting or providing directions to a special event erected from Saturday through the following Monday shall not be subject to an agreement provided for in subsection A.

D. If Fairfax County acts as an agent of the Commissioner of Highways under this section, then it shall require each of its employees and any volunteers who are authorized to act on behalf of the County to comply with the provisions of this section and any other applicable law. If a lawfully placed sign is confiscated by an employee or volunteer authorized to act for the County in violation of the authority granted under this section, the sign owner shall have the right to reclaim the sign within five business days of the date of such confiscation.

1998, c. 835, § 33.1-375.1; 1999, c. 195; 2003, c. 311; 2010, cc. 497, 777, 832; 2012, c. 739; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1226. Harmony of regulations.

No zoning board or commission or any other public officer or agency shall permit any sign, advertisement, or advertising structure that is prohibited under the provisions of this article, nor shall the Commissioner of Highways permit any sign, advertisement, or advertising structure that is prohibited by any other public board, officer, or agency in the lawful exercise of its powers.

Code 1950, § 33-320; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-374; 1976, c. 14; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1227. Violation a nuisance; abatement.

Any sign, advertisement, or advertising structure that is erected, used, maintained, operated, posted, or displayed for which no permit has been obtained where such is required, or after revocation or more than 30 days after expiration of a permit, is hereby declared to be a public and private nuisance and may be forthwith removed, obliterated, or abated by the Commissioner of Highways. The Commissioner of Highways may collect the cost of such removal, obliteration, or abatement from the person erecting, using, maintaining, operating, posting, or displaying such sign, advertisement, or advertising structure.

Code 1950, § 33-321; 1954, c. 588; 1960, c. 406; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-375; 1976, c. 14; 2012, cc. 760, 818; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1228. Disposition of fees.

All moneys received by the Commissioner of Highways under the provisions of this article shall be paid by him into the state treasury, except as provided in §§ 33.2-1224 and 33.2-1229, and allocated to the Board for use in the regulation and control of outdoor advertising and landscaping of highways.

Code 1950, § 33-322; 1964, c. 619; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-376; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1229. Penalties for violation.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person, firm, or corporation that violates any provision of this article or applicable regulations that fails to take corrective action within 30 days as specified in a written notice from the Commissioner of Highways shall be subject to any or all of the following penalties:

1. A civil penalty of not more than $250 per violation. Each day during which the violation continues after a final determination by the Commissioner of Highways of such violation shall be deemed a separate violation;

2. Revocation by the Commissioner of Highways of any permit for the sign; or

3. Removal of the sign by the Commissioner of Highways. The Commissioner of Highways may collect the costs of the removal from the owner of the sign.

B. Any person aggrieved by the action of the Commissioner of Highways in enforcing the provisions of subsection A may appeal the decision of the Commissioner of Highways in accordance with the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.).

C. The Commissioner of Highways may remove signs without giving a corrective action notice as provided in subsection A (i) for any violation of subdivision 3, 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10 of § 33.2-1216 or of § 33.2-1223 or (ii) if the Commissioner of Highways determines that the sign poses a risk to highway safety.

D. The Commissioner of Highways may recover all civil penalties authorized in subsection A in any manner permitted by law, including (i) the placement of a tax lien on the owner's real property upon which the sign is located and (ii) the use of the Setoff Debt Collection Act (§ 58.1-520 et seq.).

E. All civil penalties collected under this section shall be paid into the Highway Maintenance and Operating Fund established pursuant to § 33.2-1530.

2012, cc. 760, 818, § 33.1-377.1; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1230. Adjustment or relocation of certain billboard signs.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, general or special, whenever land is acquired due to the widening, construction, or reconstruction of any highway by purchase or by use of the power of eminent domain by any condemnor and upon such land is situated a lawfully erected billboard sign or whenever a lawfully erected billboard sign is situated adjacent to such a highway and is affected by the construction of a sound wall, such billboard sign may be relocated as provided in this section.

B. If a billboard sign meets all requirements under the provision of this title, the size, lighting, and spacing requirements of a locality that is certified in accordance with 23 C.F.R. § 750.706 and the federal-state agreement, if applicable, and § 4.1-113.1 in the case of outdoor alcoholic beverage advertising, but is considered nonconforming solely due to a local ordinance, the owner of the billboard sign, at his sole cost and expense, shall have the option to relocate such billboard sign to another location as close as practicable on the same property, adjusting the height or angle of the billboard sign to a height or angle that restores the visibility of the billboard sign to the same or comparable visibility as before the taking or before construction of the sound wall, provided the new location also meets all the requirements of this title and regulations adopted pursuant thereto. The billboard sign may remain in its original location, provided the owner of the billboard sign pays monthly rent to the Commissioner of Highways or other condemnor equivalent to the monthly rent received by the property owner for the billboard prior to acquisition, and until such time as the Commissioner or other condemnor gives notice to the owner of such billboard sign that the billboard sign must be removed. The notice of removal shall be provided at least 45 days prior to the required removal date, which shall be the earlier of the certification date for a highway project advertisement for construction bids or the date that utility relocations are scheduled to commence.

C. Nothing in this section shall authorize the owner of such billboard sign to increase the size of the sign face, and a relocated billboard sign shall continue to be nonconforming in its new location unless the relocated billboard sign becomes conforming in its new location under the local ordinance. The provisions of § 33.2-1219 shall apply to any relocation.

2013, cc. 603, 611, § 33.1-95.2; 2014, cc. 298, 805, 811; 2015, c. 256.

§ 33.2-1231. Construction of article.

This article shall be liberally construed with a view to the effective accomplishment of its purposes.

2013, cc. 603, 611, § 33.1-378; 2014, c. 805.

Article 2. False and Misleading Signs.

§ 33.2-1232. Prohibition of false and misleading signs.

It shall be unlawful for any person to erect or maintain alongside, or in plain view of, any public highway any false or misleading sign of any kind or character purporting to furnish travel information relating to place or direction. It shall be unlawful for any person to erect or maintain alongside, or in plain view of, any public highway any sign of any kind or character purporting to furnish travel information relating to merchandise or services unless the design of such sign, the information thereon, and the location thereof are approved in writing by the Commissioner of Highways, provided that the provisions of this section as to merchandise and service shall not:

1. Apply to or restrict the right of any person to post, display, erect, or maintain on any store, dwelling house, or other building, together with so much land therewith as shall be necessary for the convenience, use, and enjoyment thereof, or on any mercantile appliances, contrivances, or machinery annexed or immediately adjacent thereto, any sign advertising goods, merchandise, real or personal property, business services, entertainment, or amusements actually and in good faith manufactured, produced, bought, sold, conducted, furnished, or dealt in on the premises;

2. Limit or restrict the publication of official notices by or under the direction of any public or court officer in the performance of his official or directed duties;

3. Limit or restrict notice of sale by a trustee under a deed of trust, deed of assignment, or other similar instrument; or

4. Apply to or restrict the right of any property owner or his agent, lessee, or tenant to maintain any sign offering to the public farm products, including livestock of every kind, or board or lodging or similar entertainment, or the sale, rental, or lease of the property.

Nothing in this section shall limit the right of any person, firm, or corporation to erect signs that advertise natural scenic attractions in the Commonwealth.

Code 1950, § 33-324; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-379; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1233. Penalty for violation of § 33.2-1232.

Any person who violates any of the provisions of § 33.2-1232 shall be subject to a fine not to exceed $10 for each offense, and it shall be deemed a separate offense for the same person to erect, or permit to be erected, a similar sign at each of two or more places.

Code 1950, § 33-325; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-380; 2014, c. 805.

§ 33.2-1234. Removal of false or misleading signs by Commissioner of Highways.

Whenever the Commissioner of Highways determines that a sign gives incorrect information in violation of this article, he shall notify the person who erected such sign and the person on whose property it is located, in writing, to remove it immediately, and if it is not removed within 10 days after receipt of such notice, the Commissioner of Highways shall remove and destroy such sign, or cause it to be removed and destroyed, without liability for damages therefor, and if any person convicted of erecting or maintaining any such sign, or of permitting the same to be erected or maintained, as provided in this article shall fail or refuse to remove such sign within 10 days after such judgment of conviction, the Commissioner of Highways shall remove and destroy such sign without liability for damages.

(Code 1950, § 33-327; 1970, c. 322, § 33.1-381; 2014, c. 805.)

Chapter 13. Woodrow Wilson Bridge and Tunnel Compact [Repealed].

§ 33.2-1300. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2015, c. 256, cl. 9.

Chapter 14. Virginia-North Carolina Interstate High-Speed Rail Compact.

§ 33.2-1400. Virginia-North Carolina Interstate High-Speed Rail Compact.

§ 1. Short title.

This act shall be known and may be cited as the Virginia-North Carolina Interstate High-Speed Rail Compact.

§ 2. Compact established.

Pursuant to the invitation in 49 U.S.C. § 24101 Interstate Compacts, in which the United States Congress grants consent to states with an interest in a specific form, route, or corridor of intercity passenger rail service (including high-speed rail service) to enter into interstate compacts, there is hereby established the Virginia-North Carolina Interstate High-Speed Rail Compact.

§ 3. Agreement.

The Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of North Carolina agree, upon adoption of this compact:

1. To study, develop, and promote a plan for the design, construction, financing, and operation of interstate high-speed rail service through and between points in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of North Carolina and adjacent states;

2. To coordinate efforts to establish high-speed rail service at the federal, state, and local governmental levels;

3. To advocate for federal funding to support the establishment of high-speed interstate rail service within and through Virginia and North Carolina and to receive federal funds made available for rail development; and

4. To provide funding and resources to the Virginia-North Carolina High-Speed Rail Compact Commission from funds that are or may become available and are appropriated for that purpose.

§ 4. Commission established; appointment and terms of members; chairman; reports; Commission funds; staff.

The Virginia-North Carolina High-Speed Rail Compact Commission is hereby established as a regional instrumentality and a common agency of each signatory party, empowered in a manner hereinafter set forth to carry out the purposes of the Compact.

The Virginia members of the Commission shall be appointed as follows: three members of the House of Delegates appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates, and two members of the Senate appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules. The North Carolina members of the Commission shall be composed of five members as follows: two members of the Senate appointed by the General Assembly upon recommendation of the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, two members of the House of Representatives appointed by the General Assembly upon recommendation of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and one appointed by the Governor.

A Co-Chairman to the Commission shall be chosen by the Virginia members of the Commission from among its Virginia membership for a term of one year.

A Co-Chairman to the Commission shall be chosen by the North Carolina members of the Commission from among its North Carolina membership for a term of one year.

The Commission shall meet at least twice each year, at least once in Virginia and once in North Carolina, and shall issue a report of its activities each year.

The Commission may utilize, for its operation and expenses, funds appropriated to it therefor by the legislatures of Virginia and North Carolina or received from federal sources.

Virginia members of the Commission shall receive compensation and reimbursement for the necessary and actual expenses as provided in the general appropriations act; North Carolina members of the Commission shall receive per diem, subsistence and travel allowances in accordance with applicable statutes of North Carolina, as appropriate.

Primary staff to the Commission shall be provided by the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation and the North Carolina Department of Transportation.

1992, c. 167, § 33.1-391.1; 2014, c. 805; 2015, c. 494.

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