Monday, March 26, 2007

transportation enhancements funding threatened & bike commute tax break considered

Every blike blogger and her brother have mentioned this recent threat to trail funding, but League of American Bicyclists has a good summary.

Basically, Congress told states to return some of their transportation budget (after checking on this, we found that "no take-backs" is not actually a constitutional right). Governors have to decide what programs will be cut in the next few weeks, and bike paths and lanes are an easy target. Follow the link above for more information on contacting the decision-makers with appropriate please and threats.

Fortunately, Ann Arbor sets aside city funds for cycling improvements. But massive cuts to State bike budgets will certainly have a regional impact.

At the same time, the Bicycle Commuter Act has been introduced in Congress. This act would allow employers to offer bike commuters commuting incentives similar to transit riders. Maintenance, bike gear and riding clothes would be not be taxed up to a monthly maximum ($105 ofr transit riders).
Dingel, Stabenaw and Levin are not currently supporting the bill, so drop them a note of encouragement via the above link.

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