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News / Blog Advocacy News
Advocacy News

U.S. House Passes Transportation Bill With Bike/Ped Funding

Action-Alert-Photo

You did it! Thank you for calling and emailing your U.S. Representatives in response to the Action Alert earlier this week. The anti-bike and anti-active-transportation amendments were defeated, and the House transportation bill passed on Thursday. 

We're not done yet! Now, the transportation bills from the House and the Senate go to conference where the two chambers work out the differences between the bills. The Senate bill is stronger than the House bill at this point for people who walk or ride bikes. Three Texas representatives are on the conference committee: Brian Babin (R-36), Blake Farenthold (R-27), and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-30). Keep an eye out for more action on these bills over the next couple of weeks.

A huge thanks to our friends at the League of American Bicyclists for working so hard on Capitol Hill to keep members of Congress thinking about active transportation and to keep the rest of us informed! Read more about the House action this week on the League's blog.

 

Vote Texas 2015: Proposition 7

Miércoles 21 de Octubre de 2015 11:50

texas capitolEarly voting has begun in Texas, and among the many propositions for Texas voters is Proposition 7, which will allocate more funding to TxDOT if passed. 
 
Proposition 7 reads, "The constitutional amendment dedicating certain sales and use tax revenue and motor vehicle sales, use, and rental tax revenue to the state highway fund to provide funding for nontolled roads and the reduction of certain transportation-related debt." Learn more about Proposition 7 here.
 
This proposition provides no specific funding for active transportation infrastructure; however, we see no language in the measure that would prevent TxDOT from following its own guidance for considering all road users in a project. Therefore, BikeTexas is neutral on Proposition 7.
 
As ever, BikeTexas strongly encourages all Texans to exercise their right to vote and have your say in Texas' future. Find out where to vote, what else is on your ballot, and more at votetexas.gov.
   

Get Electricity, Support Bicycle Advocacy with Reliant Energy

reliant ecoshare earthshare program biketexasSupport bicycle advocacy in Texas with Reliant Energy's EcoShare Program!

BikeTexas is a nonprofit partner of Earthshare, who works with Reliant Energy to support nonprofits across Texas every time a Texas customer purchases a carbon offset. BikeTexas receives a portion of those donations. Learn more about the carbon offset program and sign up here!

BikeTexas is proud to partner with organizations who are making a difference across Texas. Thank you for supporting EarthShare of Texas!

 

 

 

   

Public Meeting: Submit Comments to TxDOT for the Unified Transportation Program

Miércoles 15 de Julio de 2015 15:31

TxDOT is seeking public input for the Unified Transportation Program
Attend online or at your TxDOT District Office TOMORROW, Thursday, July 16
 
 
Participation from people who ride bikes in Texas is valuable and effective at these meetings-- TxDOT incorporated a significant number of comments submitted by bike/ped advocates during the comment periods for previous long-range plans. TxDOT staff has also remarked about the high and professional level of bike/ped advocate attendance at these public meetings.
 
In fact, high levels of participation from people who ride bikes has strained the TxDOT servers during online meetings in the past. It's critical that we continue to be involved in this planning process so TxDOT knows that we aren't going away. The UTP provides long-term guidance that can either ensure or prevent bike/ped funding and infrastructure in our transportation system.
 
 
Here are some topics to consider offering comments about at the meeting. If any one resonates with you, let TxDOT know! More info can be found at the links:
 
As always, thank you for making Texas a great place to ride a bike!
   

Late Amendment Defeated--Please Thank These Texas Reps

Miércoles 10 de Junio de 2015 13:51

leslie nbs 2014 us capitol biketexasAs the debate on transportation funding wore on in the House on Tuesday night, Representative Emmer of Minnesota introduced an amendment that would have cut communities' ability to use their transit funds according to their own needs. The Emmer amendment would not allow New Start grants (these are outside of the Highway Trust Fund and come from elsewhere in the budget) to build sidewalks or bike lanes as part of a transit project. For many transit users, however, those same sidewalks and bike lanes provide the key connections needed to get to a bus stop. Right now, communities who receive the grants can decide for themselves whether those connections are needed. Rep. Emmer's amendment would have taken away that local decision-making ability.

However, the amendment was defeated in a close vote, 212-214. Many, many thanks to Representatives from Texas who voted against this strike against local control active transportation funding. These are the folks who voted against the amendment; if your representative is on this list, please take a moment to send a thank-you email:

Rep. Joaquin Castro (San Antonio)
Rep. Henry Cuellar (Laredo)
Rep. Lloyd Doggett (Austin/San Antonio)
Rep. Al Green (Houston)
Rep. Gene Green (Houston)
Rep. Kay Granger (Fort Worth)
Rep. Rubén Hinojosa (Edinburg)
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (Houston)
Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (Dallas)
Rep. Beto O’Rourke (El Paso)
Rep. Filemon Vela Jr. (Brownsville)
Rep. Marc Veasey (Fort Worth)

 

Not sure who your representative is? Find out here and contact him or her at the same time. 

 

If your representative is not on the list, please reach out! Let him or her know how important this funding is to communities. Here are some talking points to consider when speaking to your representative: 

      • My name is _____ and my occupation is ______. I am a resident of District ____.
      • I was sorry to hear that you voted for the Emmer amendment on Transportation HUD Appropriations on Tuesday, June 9.
      • The amendment would have limited how local governments can spend New Start funds.
      • New Start projects have gone through a local planning process, and this amendment would have overridden the local decision-making processes.
      • Improving Bicycle and pedestrian projects in and around transit expand the reach of transit, making those projects more cost effective.
      • These improvements also make transit safer and easier to use for people of all ages and abilities.
      • (Do you have a personal story about transportation access or a local project you could mention? Please share it with your representative.)
      • In the future, please support multi-modal, cost-effective and locally-supported transportation.
      • Thank you for your time.

 

Thank you for reaching out to your elected officials to make Texas a better place to ride a bike!

 

Photo: BikeTexas' Leslie Luciano at the US Capitol as part of the National Bike Summit in 2014. Visiting members of Congress reminds them that people who ride bikes also vote!

   

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