I had a very productive discussion with Bob Torzynski head of bicycle and pedestrian affairs at Genesee Tranportation Council (GTC) and got some background on the proposal discussed by Rich Perrin head of GTC when he visited us last month. This $50 million proposal is just for the Rochester area and is part of a bigger proposal. (More details are in Jeff Mapes’s book Pedaling Revolution on page 59. )
After the 2006 elections Rails To Trails started shopping a plan around the country to give forty communities, $50 million dollars to increase bicycling and pedestrian use – that’s a total of $2 Billion, yes $2 Billion, nationally.
This is being made possible by the introduction of Oregon House Representative Earl Blumenhauer’s Active Transportation ACT of 2010 or ACTA or House Bill # 4722 which asks for $ 2 billion dollars over 6 years. This is the potential source of our funding for our $50 million dollar application. Today I sent a 10 page draft of the Rochester Case Statement to Rails to Trails to critically review and make suggestions to strengthen our proposal. The draft was originally created by the Rochster Area Community Foundaton inconjuction with the GTC. Rails To Trails is very supportive of our application and encouraged us to move forward when we visited their offices when when in Wash. DC.
If the Active Transportation bill passes, they will porbably fund 40 communities. Currently they have 53 case statements from different communities and we would have a very good chance of getting funded. All this is dependent on getting house Bill # 472 passed. We need to encourage all of our congressmen to support and more importantly cosponsor house bill # 4722. This is the most important national letter we can do probably this year so I’d encourage you to do write your congress man or woman. I will keep you posted on our progress.