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News / Blog Action Alerts!
Action Alert!

Action Alert: HB 117 Needs Your Support

Saturday, July 29 2017 14:04

Action Alert Header

HB 171 by Rep. Goldman will override all local mobile device ordinances and replace them with a new, weaker version. The sole purpose of this bill is to water down local decisions regarding mobile device use. Please vote NO on HB 171.

We urge you to contact your Texas Representative and tell them that you want to support HB 117 by Rep. Uresti instead. Please vote YES on 117.

HB 117 expands and strengthens our new statewide mobile device bill (HB 62). This bill is in danger of languishing in the House Transportation Committee and dying before the end of the Special Session. 

Here's what you can do to support more stringent rules for cell phone use while driving: 

 
 
We've found the following format to be useful when contacting elected officials:
  • My name is _____ and my occupation is _____. I live in District ____. I support Representative Uresti's House Bill 117. Please vote YES on Uresti's HB 117, and NO on Goldman's HB 171.

Relevant facts related to this legislation include:

  1. Use of a mobile device while driving is widely recognized to be a dangerous behavior.
  2. Distracted drivers are highly dangerous to bicyclists and pedestrians.
  3. Local mobile device use ordinances are frequently stricter than state law. If local voters have chosen to more strictly regulate themselves, then their decisions should be honored.
  4. The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration urges local citizens to advocate for local laws with regards to distracted driving. Rep. Goldman's HB 171 seeks to take away that local control.
 
Thank you for speaking up for safe driving practices in Texas! One more way to help--please share this with any bike, pedestrian, or traffic safety groups you may be part of, plus all of your friends that want safer roads in our cities. 
 
Action Alert Header

You are receiving this email because you are a constituent of a Texas Representative on the Texas House Transportation Committee. 

HB 171 by Rep. Goldman will override all local mobile device ordinances and replace them with a new, weaker version. The sole purpose of this bill is to water down local decisions regarding mobile device use. Please vote NO on HB 171.

We urge you to contact your Texas Representative and tell them that you want to support HB 117 by Rep. Uresti instead. Please vote YES on 117.

HB 117 expands and strengthens our new statewide mobile device bill (HB 62). This bill is in danger of languishing in the House Transportation Committee and dying before the end of the Special Session. 

Here's what you can do to support more stringent rules for cell phone use while driving: 

 
 
We've found the following format to be useful when contacting elected officials:
  • My name is _____ and my occupation is _____. I live in District ____. I support Representative Uresti's House Bill 117. Please vote YES on Uresti's HB 117, and NO on Goldman's HB 171.

Relevant facts related to this legislation include:

  1. Use of a mobile device while driving is widely recognized to be a dangerous behavior.
  2. Distracted drivers are highly dangerous to bicyclists and pedestrians.
  3. Local mobile device use ordinances are frequently stricter than state law. If local voters have chosen to more strictly regulate themselves, then their decisions should be honored.
  4. The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration urges local citizens to advocate for local laws with regards to distracted driving. Rep. Goldman's HB 171 seeks to take away that local control.
 
Thank you for speaking up for safe driving practices in Texas! One more way to help--please share this with any bike, pedestrian, or traffic safety groups you may be part of, plus all of your friends that want safer roads in our cities. 
 

Save State Parks Funding for Texas: Contact the TX Lege Now

Sunday, April 30 2017 18:03

Action Alert Header
HB 78 Goes Before the House Appropriation Committee on May 4
HB 78 Makes State Parks Funding Permanent

The Texas Sporting Goods Sales Tax was created to fund Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD)– not to be used for other purposes at the whim of the legislature. But both House and Senate appropriations committees are poised to carve out $92 million from the sporting good sales tax to do just that.

This can be fixed now! The Budget Conference Committee can correct this error before the budget is ultimately finalized. If your Senator or Rep is on the Conference Committee, ask him or her to fully fund state parks.

Additionally, House Bill 78 by Representative Ryan Gullien has been filed to fix this glitch so that the $92 million can be recovered and bring TWPD funding up to its full level. HB 78 will be heard by the House Appropriations Committee on Thursday, May 4Please contact your reps immediately and tell them you support Texas State Parks.

In addition to developing and maintaining our priceless State Parks, TPWD provides Recreational Trails funding for trails all over the state, including rail-to-trail corridors such as Caprock Canyons, Mineral Wells, and the proposed 130-mile long Northeast Texas Trail from near McKinney though Paris to near Texarkana. This valuable work should be supported by our legislature, not curtailed through choking off funding.

Here's what you can do to support Texas State Parks: 

  • Find your Texas Representative and Senator and head to their respective contact pages. Not sure what to do? See the illustrations below. (Please look up your own representatives; don't just call the folks listed here--they might not represent you!)
  • Is your Rep or Senator on the Budget Conference Committee? Ask him or her to fully fund state parks.
  • Call or email your Rep and Senator and urge both to support HB 78 to bring TPWD up to its full funding level with YOUR Texas Sporting Goods Sales Tax.
  • Keep in mind you'll most likely speak to a legislative staffer, not the Rep or Senator. 
We've found the following format to be useful when contacting elected officials:
  • My name is _____ and my occupation is _____. I live in District ____. I support Texas State Parks.
  • (If applicable) Please correct the $92 million shortfall in the TPWD budget by appropriating the 94% of the Sporting Goods Sales Tax that was intended for parks into the TPWD budget.
  • Please support HB 78 by Rep. Ryan Guillen, scheduled for a hearing on May 4 in House Appropriations Committee.
  • (Use any/all of the suggested talking points below as they relate to you. Help your elected officials understand why this is an important issue for you.)
  1. State and local parks are vital to our state’s economy and to preserving our Texas heritage, culture, and way of life. 
  2. This bill would amend the Parks and Wildlife Code and permanently require that 94% of the Sporting Goods Sales Tax be appropriated for the state and local parks, as it was intended.
  3. I am proud to join a diverse range of voters in supporting our parks. From hunting and fishing groups, to environmentalists and conservation organizations, we stand together in support of proper funding for our parks.
  4. The Comptroller’s revenue estimate for the 2018-2019 biennium budget shows the Sporting Goods Sales Tax will bring in an estimated $333.5 million. Under the tax code, 94% of that should be appropriated for state and local parks, which would amount to $313.5 million. However, there is currently a $92.5 million shortfall in the budget.
  5. As a proud Texan and friend of the parks, I am calling on you to fully fund the parks so that the department will have consistency in its budget and be able to properly maintain and operate our state parks for all Texans to enjoy.
  • Thank you for your time and consideration.  
Thank you for speaking up for state parks funding in Texas! One more way to help--please share this with any bike, trail, or park groups you may be part of, plus all of your friends who love Texas State Parks. Let's let the lege know Texans want great parks!
   

Contact Your Austin Council Member Today!

Tuesday, June 21 2016 14:03

Let your council member know that biking and walking in Austin matter to you
 
A balanced bond proposal can transform Austin's roadways
 
This is a rare opportunity to meet critical needs for biking and walking

The Austin City Council will make a key decision this week whether to move toward a bond election in 2016

 

BikeTexas is working with allied organizations and city council members on a bond proposal that will greatly benefit active transportation in Austin. Please contact your council member TODAY and ask him or her to support this balanced transportation bond. 

If a consensus can be reached by this Thursday, June 23, for a November bond election, it has the potential to be the biggest transportation bond in Austin's history. With Austin’s soaring population growth, the time is now! Since it could be five years or longer until this opportunity arises again, it is vital to maximize active transportation funding in this bond election. Future bonds are likely to be directed toward other city needs, while the 2014 Bike Plan and 2016 Sidewalk Plan will collect dust.

Austin citizens have repeatedly indicated support for active transportation choices like biking, walking, and transit. Having real alternatives to private car use will allow folks to save on gas and parking, enable seniors to age in place, encourage talented young people to remain in Austin, and improve the quality of life for all. Too much reliance on automobiles alone has never provided the answers Austin is looking for.

The Austin Bicycle Master Plan calls for $150 million over five years to build critical infrastructure which is projected to replace 20,000 car trips per day with bike trips, thus providing safety for people who ride bikes as well as easing congestion in the city. The $150 million for the Bicycle Master Plan includes $60 million for protected bike lanes and $90 million for urban trails.

Austin's Sidewalk Master Plan calls for $250 million to fund high-priority sidewalks that connect to schools and transit. These vital connections will reduce congestion at schools and leverage Austin's existing transit investment by providing easier, more efficient transit access to more Austinites.

The bond proposal BikeTexas seeks is a balanced step in the right direction toward addressing these needs that have been left underfunded for far too long. A balanced bond package can provide $150 million each for the Bike and Sidewalk plans, plus an additional $200 million dedicated to local road corridors that serve transit.

Please call or email your council member today and ask him or her to support a balanced transportation bond proposal. 

We've found the following format to be useful when speaking to elected officials:

  1. My name is _____ and my occupation is _____. I live and bike/walk in District __.
  2. I ask Council Member _______ to support a balanced transportation bond proposal. A $500 million bond package that includes $150 million for the Sidewalk Master Plan, $150 million for the Bicycle Master Plan, and $200 million for transportation corridors will be transformational for Austin.
  3. Safety, mobility, equity, and affordability are served by a balanced, $500 million bond package. Should the council instead move on a bond proposal at $720 million, then the bond should fully fund the $250 million for the Sidewalk Plan, $150 million for the Bike Plan, and $320 million for roads that serve transit.
  4. This bond matters to me and my family because... (take a couple of sentences to tell your story. Do you bike or walk to work? Would you like to use transit more? Do your kids want to ride to school? Let the council member know why this is important to you.)
  5. Thank you for your time and consideration. I respectfully urge Council Member _____ to support a balanced bond package for $500 million.

Thank you for helping to make Austin a great place to ride a bike!

rio grande cycletrack

   

Action Alert: Contact Your U.S. Representative Today

Tuesday, November 03 2015 11:57

Action-Alert-BikeTexas

Ask Your Representative to Oppose the Carter and Yoho Amendments
Debate over the new transportation bill continues in the U.S. House today, and your representative needs to hear from people who ride bikes. Representatives Buddy Carter (GA) and Ted Yoho (FL) have introduced amendments that are hostile to bike/ped funding and could result in cities not having any funding for bicycle or pedestrian infrastructure. 
 
The amount of money that is allocated in the Transportation Bill for bike/ped purposes is already small, and eliminating those funds would not make a difference on expensive road projects. However, these small amounts make a huge difference for installing much more cost-effective bike and pedestrian projects. Please contact your representative today and ask him or her to oppose these amendments.
 

We've found the following format to be helpful when speaking to elected officials: 

  • My name is __________ and my occupation is ________. I live in [your district]. 
  • I [and/or your spouse, children, etc.] ride a bicycle in the district.
  • The Carter and Yoho amendments will make it harder for [your city] to get the funding it needs to provide safe places for my family to walk or bike. I ask that Representative [name] oppose these amendments.
  • [Tell the representative why this is important to you.]
  • Will Representative [name] oppose the Carter and Yoho amendments?

If you send an email, please cc  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Knowing how many folks have reached out helps us and the national groups like the League of American Bicyclists when speaking directly to elected officials. Thank you for reaching out to make Texas a great place to ride a bike!

   

Action Alert: Contact Senator Ted Cruz TODAY

Tuesday, July 14 2015 14:13

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Senate Commerce Committee will vote on transportation amendments Wednesday
Tell Senator Cruz that you support active transportation
 
On Wednesday, the Senate Commerce Committee is voting on a number of amendments to the transportation bill. Senator Ted Cruz is on the Commerce Committee-- please contact him today to ask him to support both of these key amendments.

AMTRAK roll on service-- Please ask Senator Cruz to support the Manchin Amendment. 

Demand for multi-modal transportation options, including the increasingly popular combination of bikes with buses and trains, is growing across the country. Currently, only a handful of Amtrak stations and train services allow convenient roll-on access for bicycles, and where they do, the service is popular and well-used. The Manchin Amendment would require Amtrak to report to Congress on what standardized roll-on service for all users should look like and what it would take to get there. This amendment would benefit people who use wheelchairs and other assistive devices as well as those who travel with bicycles.
 
Safe Streets policy-- Please ask Senator Cruz to support the Heller, Schatz, Markey Amendment. 

This amendment would ensure that the design of federal surface transportation projects provides for the safe and adequate accommodation of all road users in the planning, development, and operation of transportation projects. Planning for all road users from the beginning of a project lowers costs from having to retrofit later, plus contributes to a complete transportation network for all.

 
TIGER Grants-- Please ask Senator Cruz to support the Cantwell Amendment.
 
TIGER grants, critical sources of funding for bicycle, pedestrian, transit, and other key projects for communities, has been gutted. The current bill restricts TIGER funds to freight only. Senator Cantwell's amendment would strike the freight-only language and restore this program. TIGER grants help cut through red tape and provide funding directly to local areas for transportation projects that boost local economies, enhance communities through connectivity, and increase transportation safety.
 
Use the contact form found on the Senate's website to contact Senator Cruz and ask him to support these amendments. Thank you for making Texas-- and the nation-- a great place to bike and walk!
   

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