February 14, 2011  
freewheeling adventures


The next few weeks leading up to the National Bike Summit are going to be pretty interesting! The president's 2012 budget heralds some major changes in the way transportation programs are delivered; we're taking a look at those. We're watching the 2011 spending cuts in Congress to protect bike funding programs from unfair cuts. And we are preparing to welcome several hundred of you to Washington, D.C. this March 8-10. We are ready for action!

Andy Clarke
Andy Clarke, League President

National News
National Bike Summit Agenda Details
Please register for the National Bike Summit. We are still on pace for a record turnout and we really need EVERY voice to make our case for bicycling in the United States even stronger. There are education sessions and speakers on a variety of advocacy topics related to the national agenda: check the details here.
Transportation and Infrastructure Field Hearings
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-FL) has announced a series of field hearings and listening sessions on the pending surface transportation reauthorization bill. The meetings will be an opportunity to provide feedback to Chairman Mica and the T&I Committee Members as they are drafting the legislation. If you live in any of these congressional districts, contact your Representative's office to request the chance to speak or ask a question.

Click here to read more and view proposed meeting schedule.
Be Prepared for Congressional Action
Bike and pedestrian advocates have been monitoring and preparing for possible federal budget cuts since the introduction of the 112th Congress. If biking and walking funding and programs are targeted, we will have a very short window in which to take action. It is imperative that you join our "Action E-list" so we can let you know right away if we need your voice to help make a difference. There is no action to take at this moment - this is just to notify you that we are closely watching the budget cuts and we will need your help.
HHS Announces $750 Million Investment in Prevention
The Department of Health and Human Services announced a $750 million investment in prevention and public health. Building on $500 million in investments last year, new funds are dedicated to expanding community prevention programs (including physical activity promotion), clinical prevention, public health infrastructure, and research and tracking. Get more information on how your community can participate here.
EPA Community Planning Assistance
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is offering sustainability planning technical assistance for communities. Letters of interest are due by 3:00 p.m. EST on February 23. Read the program announcement. More information is available here.
Apply for a $500 Road Safety Mini-Grant
If you are planning a traffic safety event in May (perhaps for National Youth Traffic Safety Month, National Bicycle Safety Month, or National Motorcycle Safety Month, or other safety event), $500 mini-grants are available to assist with U.S. local and state activities for the May 11th Decade of Action for Road Safety launch. It is a very short application (250 words) and any not-for-profit organization (including government offices) may apply. Due date is March 21, 2011. To apply and receive the applicaton click here.
National Parks Service Promotes Riding in Parks
The February issue of the National Park Service's e-newsletter Conservation+Recreation,touts the great riding that is to be had in our national parks. Additionally, park service staff is advocating and enjoying bicycling as an easier way to do their job. Read more.
State & Local News
Ridership Up and Crashes Down in Minneapolis
 The average annual number of bicycle/motor vehicle crashes in Minneapolis between 1993 and 1999 was 334. Since 2000, the number has dropped 20 percent to 269. Why? Are fewer people in Minneapolis riding these days? No. In fact, according to the U.S. Census and American Community Survey data, the number of Minneapolitans regularly biking to work more than doubled between 1990 and 2008 (3,000 to 8,000). This increase is supported by the city's counts, which show a 174 percent increase in bicyclists in downtown Minneapolis between 2003 and 2008. Read more about this latest example of how bicyclists are safer in numbers.
State Legislative Updates
Several states are making considerable progress to improve bicycling, including: Georgia, New Mexico, and Washington. Read about their legislative headway ...

Georgia's Better Bicycling Bill -- HB 101 passed the House public safety committee unanimously. The bill will now move on to the Rules committee. Click here to take action. Additionally, Georgia has a Three Foot Safe Passing Bill HB 180 on the books. Urge Georgia legislators to take action.

New Mexico's House Bill 68 -- Legislation aimed at increasing penalty options at sentencing for drivers found guilty of careless driving that resulted in severe bodily harm or death. Read more here.

Washington's Several Bills --
Washington's two bills, traffic school education (HB 1129) and 20 mph (HB 1217) both passed the full house and were reviewed by the Senate last week. Read the update on HB 1129 and 1217.
World News
Velo-City Sevilla 2011
 The Velo-City series is the global international cycling planning conference, organized by the ECF and host cities. This year the conference will be March 23-25 in Seville, Spain. The city will reflect the theme of the conference -- sustainable transport making a significant contribution to climate change.

Speakers include:
  • Gro Harlem Brundtland -- she has spent the last forty years promoting sustainable development and health and supporting human rights.
  • Guillermo (Gil) Peņalosa -- an expert in inhabitable and healthy communities, and the Velo-city 2011 Master of Ceremonies.
  • Francesco Tonucci -- concerned with solitude and lack of autonomy of movement of children who live in cities. These concerns led him to create the "La Cittā dei Bambini" (Children's City) project in 1996. 
The League of American Bicyclists promotes bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation, and works through advocacy and education for a bicycle-friendly America. The League represents the interests of America's 57 million bicyclists, including its 300,000 members and affiliates. For more information or to support the League, visit www.bikeleague.org.
In This Issue
National Bike Summit Agenda
T&I Field Hearings
Be Prepared for Action
HHS $750 M
EPA Assistance
$500 Mini-grants
National Park Service
Minneapolis Progress
State Updates
Velo City Sevilla
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