Friday, January 28, 2022
HomeCyclingWA Bikes: ‘There’s alternative abound’ briefly 60-day state legislative session

WA Bikes: ‘There’s alternative abound’ briefly 60-day state legislative session


State legislators appeared decided to cross a significant transportation funding invoice in the course of the 2021 session, however the give attention to freeway spending and backwards concepts like a tax on bicycles in the end helped stall the hassle till the session ran out of time. There was even speak of a particular session to get the hassle handed, however that happily by no means occurred.

Governor Jay Inslee picked Steve Hobbs, the earlier Senate Transportation Committee Chair, to function Secretary of State after Kim Wyman joined the Biden administration. Hobbs was a significant drive pulling the funding talks backwards, proposing a brand new bicycle tax, slicing the Home’s proposed multimodal investments and including hundreds of thousands for freeway growth tasks.

Marko Liias is the brand new Senate Transportation Chair, setting off a surge of hope {that a} high quality transportation funding bundle, together with different wanted transportation insurance policies, can be attainable this yr. Liias has lengthy acquired glowing endorsements from secure streets, bicycling and transit advocacy organizations. Nevertheless it’s a brief session, so legislators and advocates might want to transfer shortly to get it executed in time.

“With a brand new Senate Transportation Committee Chair, and momentum from work began in 2021 on a state transportation income invoice, there’s alternative abound,” wrote WA Bikes State Coverage Director Alex Alston in an e mail to supporters.

Washington Bikes has printed their targets for the session, which embrace rising the funding for biking, strolling and transit, addressing inequities in transportation (together with inequitably harmful streets), e-bike incentives (if electrical vehicles get them, why not electrical bikes?), and updating the Progress Administration Act to incorporate local weather resiliency. That’s formidable however achievable record for the quick session. You may assist the hassle by signing up for the WA Bikes Legislative Week of Motion February 1–5.

From WA Bikes:

The 2022 legislative session begins Monday, January 10. With simply 60 days to finish the legislative session, and final minute format changes  as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, will probably be a dash to get payments by way of each chambers and to the Governor’s desk. We’re excited to work with our legislative champions, together with state Sen. Marko Liias because the newly appointed Senate Transportation Committee Chair, to develop investments and enact insurance policies to extend entry to secure biking for transportation and recreation throughout the state of Washington.

Develop bike and pedestrian funding within the multimodal account 

  • Ask: Defend and develop investments for bike and pedestrian grant funding within the state transportation finances or by way of new income investments. The multimodal account dedicates funds for modes of transportation aside from motor autos, resembling rail, ferries, transit, biking and strolling. These investments embrace the Protected Routes to College grant program and the Bicycle and Pedestrian grant program and undertaking record. By defending and rising funds for these tasks, we will enhance security and accessibility for folks of all ages who bike, stroll and roll.

Prioritize funding to handle inequities in transportation

  • Ask: Leverage Washington’s Energetic Transportation Plan fairness evaluation to prioritize lively transportation investments that can enhance security and entry in low-income communities, communities of coloration, and areas of historic under-investment. Prioritizing these communities will assist deal with inequities in Washington’s transportation system, which has led to disproportionate incidents of crashes, based on visitors damage and fatality knowledge.

Assist measures that can incentivize e-bike possession

  • Assist: Set up measures that can incentivize or decrease limitations to e-bike possession. E-bikes present an environment friendly method to bike as a result of pedal-assist that enables for longer rides, ease of traversing hills, navigating busy intersections, and carrying groceries or kids. 76% of journeys taken by e-bike homeowners would have been automotive journeys previous to proudly owning an e-bike. Extra folks e-biking means much less folks in vehicles, which helps meet Washington’s transportation congestion and local weather targets.

Assist modernizing the Progress Administration Act (GMA)

  • Assist: Move Home Invoice 1099, which updates GMA necessities to incorporate local weather resiliency methods in addition to plans for folks in communities throughout Washington state to have secure, seamless, and inexpensive transportation choices. Guaranteeing counties and cities are planning to cut back automobile miles traveled of their complete planning equates to investing in lively transportation networks. When extra folks bike, stroll, and roll, not solely are Inexperienced Home Fuel emission discount advantages clear, however there are additionally vital well being, mode-shift, and financial advantages. Learn extra about this invoice, and it’s impacts.

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