House bill would eliminate ALL biking/walking from transportation policy!



House bill would eliminate ALL biking/walking from transportation policy!

Word is coming down from the League of American Bicycles in Washington that the House transportation bill, the American Energy and Infrastructure Act, has

cut every reference to bicycling and walking out of the federal transportation policy!

Clearly this shows how important some of our current legislators feel alternative modes of transportation are.  If this bill is allowed to pass in its current form, it would mean:

  • Destroys Transportation Enhancements by making the program optional
  • Repeals the Safe Routes to School program, reversing years of progress in creating safe ways for kids to walk and ride bicycles to school
  • Allows states to build bridges without safe access for pedestrians and bicycles
  • Eliminates bicycle and pedestrian coordinators in state DOTs
  • Eliminates language that insures that rumble strips “do not adversely affect the safety or mobility of bicyclists, pedestrians or the disabled”

There is a shimmer of hope though

Representative Petri (R-WI) will stand up for bicycling and walking by offering an amendment that restores dedicated funding for Transportation Enhancements and Safe Routes to School. Mr. Petri can only be successful if everyone with a stake in safe sidewalks, crosswalks, and bikeways contacts their Representative on the Transportation Committee again today to urge them to vote YES on the Petri amendment!

Please voice your opinion.  It only takes a few moments to fill out the online form.


  • Alex
    Jan 31, 2012 at 10:16 am

    If you tried this earlier and got stonewalled by the form as being "out of constituency" you can try again. They've fixed it.

  • barry
    Feb 2, 2012 at 4:39 am

    The bill has a lot of other really bad provisions, short-cutting environmental controls, eliminating transit funding from the gas tax and leaving that for some revenues from new oil drilling in wilderness areas, the Arctic and off our coastlines.

    My take is that the Republicn leaders know such bill cannot get thru the Senate or past this President but it shows what the GOP would do if they win the next election. I say this sadly as a former Republican candidate for local office (think of the Democrats who ran North Provdnce!) and I am aware of the psychologically satisfying non-partisan all-politicians-are-lousy position, but we have to face the fact that the national GOP is entirely in the service of the most savage elements of the fossil fuel/auto industry that seek to reverse all the (limited enough) progress we have made. Failure to recognize that plays into the hands of those whose vision for America is uncontrolled corporate greed, pollution, ugliness and reduced mobility for those that don't or won't drive.

  • Feb 2, 2012 at 9:25 am


    Been writing about this issue impacting bicycling for over a dozen years. It's far worse than anyone imagines, but who cares? Click link.

    Cardiovascular illnesses, cancer, and infectious diseases cause most deaths each year. All are indirectly related to petroleum use. Next up is motor vehicle collisions. It's the nation's leading cause of death among children and teens. With over $100 billion in losses from 4 million accidents in America alone, the 1.3 million traffic deaths globally each year rival all soldiers killed in wars during entire 20th Century, considered the bloodiest in history. We tolerate such unabated carnage as collateral damage in a class war fueled by Big Oil.

    Road building/repairing is one of the most unsustainable of all processes, nearly $1 trillion/year in federal funds matched by state percentages. That exceeds welfare for nation's growing number of poor. Rhode Island was nearly bankrupted by spending $1 billion on only 4 miles of highway in Providence and Quonset. P's & Q's, nobody pays any mind to details. I used to get Ford's and XOM's annual report: I would make me puke to see their careless attitude and greedy mindset. They aren't going to ever clean up environment they spoiled everywhere, are they? The engine of economy may have always been automotive, but it's only transferring wealth to wealthiest at environment's and everyone else's expense.

  • Feb 2, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Ray LaHood, US Transportation Secretary, had some choice things to say about the currently proposed bill, including:

    This is the most partisan transportation bill that I have ever seen

    It also is the most anti-safety bill I have ever seen. It hollows out our No. 1 priority, which is safety, and frankly, it hollows out the guts of the transportation efforts that we’ve been about for the last three years

    Will our elective "representatives" ever wake up and realize they work for the public and we expect them to work together? Come on, some of these skills should have been learned back in kindergarten.

  • Feb 3, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    Rep. Blumenauer weighs in on the proposed transportation legislation. It's worth reading the entire article, but he put this sliver lining on it:

    "We had representatives of over 600 individuals and groups from the Chamber of Commerce to the Sierra Club… For the first time in history we are part of a very impressive, broad coalition that is all pulling in the same direction. We've got an administration that has been the most supportive in history and we've got facts on the ground. The work that has been done with the cycling community, to broaden the base, to deal with things like economic development and Safe Routes to School, it's all there…

    It's a chance for us not just to beat back this bad legislation, but to educate elected officials."