Includes changes to sidepath rule and protection of Recreational Trails!
LAB — The big four leaders – Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Ranking Member Jim Inhofe (R-OK) and Senators Max Baucus (D-MT) and David Vitter (R-LA) – on the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee included a 2nd ‘manager’s amendment’ that modifies their surface transportation bill, known as MAP-21. As we reported last week, the first manager’s amendment included the Cardin-Cochran Amendment, which ensured bicycling and walking projects had a fair shot to compete for funding. This second one includes two changes on issues of concern to cyclists: the amendment will modify the mandatory side path clause and reserve funds for Recreational Trails activities unless a state opts out.
When the Senate initially released MAP-21 in November, we immediately noticed a clause (p. 226) that would force cyclists off of roads on federal lands with a speed limit over 30 miles per hour onto “an adjacent paved path,” if one was within 100 yards. Recognizing the terrible precedent that this would set, over 14,000 bicyclists and supporters signed a petition to have the clause removed. That was followed by an advocacy alert in February. [Continue reading …]