Friday, September 16, 2011

Federal funding for bicycling and walking saved--for now

Last night, the Senate passed a clean extension of the Transportation Bill by a vote of 92-6. (Senator Nelson voted Yes and Rubio was absent and did not vote). This means that all current transportation funding and programs will continue to March 31, 2012--the date the extension expires. Senator Coburn (R-OK) had threatened to strip the Transportation Enhancements program (TE)(the program that provides significant funding for bike/ped programs)from the bill. However, he eventually gave up his opposition to the bill. THIS TIME. According to Living Streets Alliance, "John Hart, a spokesman for Coburn, says the Senator agreed to drop this opposition in exchange for assurances that a highway program that funds bike paths and other 'transportation enhancements' will be eliminated at a later point."

The League of American Bicyclists warns us that we will have to continue to fight to ensure that biking and walking programs are included in the long term transportation bill or another extension.

Thanks to everyone who responded to our calls for action and contacted Senators Nelson and Rubio....and be ready to take action again in a few months!

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