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Thursday, March 30, 2023
ArlingtonOpinionEditorial: Yet another assault on property rights

Editorial: Yet another assault on property rights

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As we were pretty confident it would, a subcommittee of the House of Delegates late in January snuffed out a bill patroned by Del. Alfonso Lopez (D-Arlington-Fairfax) to dilute towing rules that are needed to maintain a semblance of parking sanity in Arlington and elsewhere.

For reasons we can only guess out (and will take shot at below), Lopez introduced legislation that not only would have given those who wanted to park improperly on private property an hour’s freedom before they could be towed, but also would have imposed penalties on the property owner if the rules weren’t followed to the letter.

Even Lopez must have had second thoughts about the efficacy of his proposal. On Jan. 26, he asked a House subcommittee to remove the bill from the docket. Committee members obliged, killing it off for 2022.


Lopez perhaps believes he was just trying to rectify bad behavior by towing companies. We’re guessing it has more to do with the delegate’s deciding to use the new GOP majority in the House of Delegates as a way to propose measures he knows will never get through, but which he can point to the next time he faces, as he did last year, a primary challenge within the Democratic party on his left.

If our assumption is correct, then it all went as choreographed.

But on the broader issue, it’s a reminder that there are politicians out there who think private property doesn’t count for much in the grand scheme of things. That’s worrisome, and another reason to applaud the current divided government in Richmond, where loopy legislation on both extremes has a far tougher road to enactment.

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