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10 reasons Congress must save bike/ped funding

The following came from a press release issued by the League of American Bicyclists…entitled “Top 10 Reasons Congress Must Preserve Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs”:

“For the past 20 years, local elected officials have had access to state transportation funds through a handful of federal programs for bicycling and walking initiatives: Safe Routes to School, Transportation Enhancements and Recreational Trails. They account for just 1.5 percent of the overall federal transportation bill and have all been heavily over-subscribed since their creation.

Despite the overwhelming success and popularity of these programs, House Republican leadership and a handful of influential Senators have waged an unexplained and inexplicable vendetta against these programs — not to save the government any money, just to prevent state or local governments spending their money on these specific programs and activities, removing any vestige of local control over transportation investments.

Here are our top ten reasons why members of Congress must reject these small-minded and vindictive attacks.

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To read the list (including a couple of “surprises”…the U.S. Military supports Safe Routes to School? Wow!), please visit the LAB blog by clicking here.

A list of lists…

A bunch of bike-related lists have appeared on the interwebs in the past few days, and we wanted to share some of them with you. Plus, creating our own list is a good way for me to clear out my email inbox in one fell swoop:

1) The League of American Bicyclists published their 2012 State Bike-Friendliness Rankings. Here they are, in order:

1. Washington
2. Minnesota
3. Massachusetts
4. Colorado
5. Oregon
6. Wisconsin
7. New Jersey
8. Maryland
9. Maine
10. Delaware
11. Illinois
12. California
13. Utah
14. Arizona
15. Pennsylvania
16. Iowa
17. Virginia
18. Vermont
19. Michigan
20. Connecticut
21. Florida
22. New Hampshire
23. Georgia
24. North Carolina
25. Wyoming
26. Tennessee
27. Texas
28. Missouri
29. Nevada
30. Indiana
31. Louisiana
32. South Carolina
33. Alaska
34. Kansas
35. Oklahoma
36. Idaho
37. Ohio
38. Mississippi
39. Rhode Island
40. South Dakota
41. Hawaii
42. New York
43. Nebraska
44. Kentucky
45. New Mexico
46. Montana
47. Alabama
48. West Virginia
49. North Dakota
50. Arkansas

More details can be found on the LAB website.

2) The LAB has also updated its “Bicycle Friendly Cities” list…with some new entrants and plenty of old favorites. Check out the interactive Bike Friendly Cities map by clicking here.

3) The folks at Walk Score announced they have a new “Bike Score” in the works…currently, it only has 10 cities, but there are plans to expand the listings based on Tweeted votes and future growth of the Bike Score system. Check out the current list of cities here.

4) Bicycling Magazine has gotten in on the act, publishing their 2012 list of America’s Top 50 Bike-Friendly Cities. There are lots of pages to click through, but the process is enjoyable and illustrative. Check out that list by visiting Bicycling’s website.

5) Perhaps most important for OUR purposes here at Bikecommuters.com (and a bid at shameless self-promotion!) is that we are nominated for Loving the Bike‘s “Crank Honors 2012”. We ask that you swing on over to their site and vote for us as Favorite Commuter Cycling Blog. It’s a 1-minute process, and there is no site registration required…just click on the radio button next to our site name and click “vote”. And, best of all, you can vote for us EVERY DAY until June 1st!!! Please take a second and vote for us…simply visit the virtual voting booth and click away! Thanks in advance for your consideration!!!

Bicycle-friendly businesses announced

The League of American Bicyclists forwarded the following press release, announcing 67 new “Bicycle Friendly Businesses” (BFBs), including a couple of Fortune 500 companies, government agencies and others. Here, have a read for yourself:

For Immediate Release

Contact:
Carolyn Szczepanski

Communications Director

League of American Bicyclists
(202) 822-1333
Carolyn@BikeLeague.org

Bicycle Friendly Businesses Are Booming

New awards boost number of bike-friendly workplaces to more than 400 nationwide

Washington, D.C. – April 18, 2012 – More than 500,000 American employees now work at a Bicycle Friendly Business (BFB), thanks to visionary leadership in the private and public sector. Today the League of American Bicyclists announced 67 new BFBs, who joined the ranks of the 412 local businesses, government agencies and Fortune 500 companies that are transforming the American workplace.

“These leaders are at the forefront of a movement to make American businesses more competitive, sustainable and attractive to the best and brightest employees,” said Andy Clarke, president of the League of American Bicyclists. “An investment in bicycling enhances employee health, increases sustainability and improves the bottom line.”

Bicycle-friendly businesses encourage a more bicycle friendly atmosphere for employees and customers. From Microsoft in Redmond, Wash., to Pepe’s Bistro in Lincoln, Neb., bicycle-friendly businesses are improving the workplace, contributing to the community and improving their overall earnings.

Award winners in this round include:

Fortune 500 companies like AstraZeneca and Rockwell Collins
Major cities, like Indianapolis, Ind. and Durham, N.C.
Government agencies, like the Federal Communications Commission
Nonprofits, like the Nature Conservancy and Outdoor Chattanooga
And major retailers like REI locations in Montana, California and Connecticut

American Family Insurance- Madison, Wis. (Bronze): “Our company improved safe bicycle access to our facility by adding signage to divert bicyclists onto paved bike lanes, installed covered bike parking, increased locker facilities and created a ‘bicycle resources’ intranet site that provides bike route maps, a guaranteed ride home program and other tips,” said Rita Garczynski, facilities site manager. “The company’s support for bicycle commuting has encouraged employees to make lifestyle changes that have resulted in improved health and engagement while having a positive impact on the environment by reducing our carbon footprint.”

Massachusetts Department of Transportation- Boston, Mass. (Bronze): “We’re proud to be the first DOT in the nation recognized as a Bicycle Friendly Business,” said MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey. “MassDOT’s core business is transportation and consistent with our ‘Green DOT policy’ we’re committed to promoting bicycling as a healthy and efficient mode of travel.” Among other innovations and improvements, in 2010, MassDOT launched a pilot bike pool, so employees have the option to ride a bike to a meeting or a site.

Carilion Clinic- Roanoke, Va. (Bronze): “As the region’s primary health care provider, Carilion is dedicated to working with our communities to improve the overall health of the people we serve,” said Nancy Howell Agee, Carilion Clinic’s president and CEO. “Bicycling is one way our employees can improve their own health and be role models for the importance of physical activity in a healthy lifestyle.”

Visit bikeleague.org/businesses for a full list of Bicycle Friendly Businesses and to learn more. For photos, contacts and additional information on awardees, contact Carolyn Szczepanski, League Communications Director, at (202) 822-1333, Carolyn@bikeleague.org.

About the Bicycle Friendly America Program

The Bicycle Friendly Community, Bicycle Friendly State, Bicycle Friendly Business and Bicycle Friendly University programs are generously supported by program partners Bikes Belong and Trek Bicycle’s One World, Two Wheels Campaign. Learn more.

About the League

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. Learn more.

An advocacy merger in the works…

Here’s an interesting bit of news to share on this beautiful, spring-like Monday:

Leaders of the Alliance for Biking & Walking, Bikes Belong, and the League of American Bicyclists Leaders met in San Diego, on February 13-14th and have issued a joint statement announcing they are to merge.

It was agreed that uniting the three organizations would dramatically improve their effectiveness in increasing bicycle use in the US.

Bike Biz via Cyclelicious.

Richard over at Cyclelicious brings up a variety of interesting points and things to consider with such a merger — concerns about the overall message of the new “super advocacy group” and how the various players might get along (or not). It’s worth a read, so swing on over to Cyclelicious to check it out for yourself.

Your thoughts on this merger? Drop ’em in the comments box below.