Letter of Support for Biking

1 Feb

My letter to Oklahoma Representative James Lankford, a member of the House transportation committee, asking for his support of biking and pedestrian funding.

*(I should add that the first three paragraphs are mine, the rest is the generic letter I sent through Rails-to-Trails. I also sent letters via LAB and Alliance for Biking and Walking and other orgs fighting for our rights. Watching the vote now – SL)

Dear Representative Lankford:

I have written to you in the past asking for your support of bicycling, but never have the circumstances been more dire.

As a country we may not realize it yet, but biking will be an important mode of transportation in the future. To many of us it already is. I know people who can’t afford to own a car or two cars for couples and use a bike (or walk) to get to work, school, shop, etc. Of course I also know people who ride for recreation and enjoyment.

As you may recall, Oklahoma City Mayor Cornett challenged Oklahoma City residents to exercise and lose weight – and they did, over one million pounds. Many did so by biking. As a country we need to do everything we can to encourage people to bike, walk and focus on their health – certainly not reduce funding to the very programs that provide for these activities.

I ask you, as a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, to vote for the Petri/Johnson/Lipinski amendment that will restore dedicated funding to the Transportation Enhancements (TE) program, among other important fixes, in reauthorization markup.

In particular, I am deeply upset that the draft bill eliminates the rail-trail category. Rail-trails do tremendous good for everyone: commuters, children learning to ride a bike, and small towns looking to boost their tourism and attract families. We all desperately need–and deserve–more such opportunities.

I look forward to hearing of your efforts to stand with Reps. Petri, Johnson and Lipinski by voting for this amendment to restore dedicated funding to the TE and Safe Routes to School programs.

Sincerely,

*Update: Unfortunately, the amendment failed by two votes. It isn’t over but this was a set-back. Rep. Lankford didn’t vote for it – no surprise. Two Republicans on the Committee voted yes, all Democrats did. Thanks to everyone for all efforts made in support of biking and pedestrian programs. More will be needed, and as I learn of future votes, etc. I’ll try to pass them on here. –Susan

One Response to “Letter of Support for Biking”

  1. Brian February 1, 2012 at 9:09 pm #

    I have also sent a letter to Rep. Lankford. I included a bit of my own observations, both good and bad, of our community’s cycling infrastructure when considered for transportation uses such as commuting and errands. I hope he will seriously consider voting yes on the amendment to the bill.

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