An Urgent request from America Bikes:
Please help save Transportation Enhancements in the Transportation Extension by contacting your Senators today! It’s easy and takes a minute at the SRTS site. Just click here and enter your ZIP code to direct your input to your Senators. Our Kansas Senator Jerry Moran is seen as a key swing vote on this issue so its’ critical you contact him to convey you desire for him to oppose any efforts to weaken Transportation Enhancements.
This year, around $700 million of Federal transportation funds, which is less than 2 percent of total transportation dollars, will be spent on bicycling and walking. In 2012 that figure could be a big fat zero if Senator Coburn (R-OK) gets his way.
In the next few days, Senator Coburn (R-OK) is expected to try and hold up the extension of the SAFETEA-LU transportation bill unless Congress eliminates funding for the federal Transportation Enhancements (TE) program. For twenty years, Transportation Enhancements has been the primary funding source for sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, trails and more.
Sen. Coburn is threatening to let tens of billions of transportation spending expire after September 30 (the current expiration of SAFETEA-LU) over the small amount that bicycling and walking receives. If Sen. Coburn were to succeed, it would mean an immediate end to funding for Transportation Enhancements. It would also mean that our chances of sustaining any funding for bicycling and walking (including for Safe Routes to School and Recreational Trails) in the long-term reauthorization bill would be more difficult.
Members of Congress who oppose bicycling and walking funding are saying that these projects are “job-killing regulations.” But, bicycle and pedestrian projects create more jobs per dollar than highway-only projects. And, bicycle and pedestrian projects help alleviate traffic congestion, improve safety, get people active, and give us all more transportation options.
Please take a minute to contact your Senators today to urge them to vote against the Coburn amendment and sustain dedicated funding for Transportation Enhancements. Don’t let them take away this vital investment program for smart, sustainable, safe transportation choices.
Thank you for your action. With your help, we can preserve funding for bicycling and walking in the extension and put us in a better position for the long-term transportation bill.
Please contact Scott Bricker, America Walks Executive Director, if you have more questions. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Of you may contact Dale Crawford, KanBikeWalk President, for information related directly to Kansas. Dale can be contact at email@example.com.