WASHINGTON, D.C. (BRAIN)—Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure chairman Jim Oberstar (D-MN) will outline plans for the new transportation authorization bill tomorrow at 2 p.m. (EST).
According to Bikes Belong executive director Tim Blumenthal, it's unlikely Oberstar will get into specifics about bicycle project and program funding during his outline, but that Oberstar gives him more hope on that front than in recent years.
“He has been an exceptional supporter of bicycling, and he has championed innovative programs such as Transportation Enhancements, Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ), Safe Routes to School and the Non-Motorized Transportation Pilots,” Blumenthal said. “He has consistently said that bicycling and other alternative transportation methods will receive increased support in the next transportation bill. He has talked about creating a new Office of Livability in the Department of Transportation that would have the power and funding to provide added support to bike projects.”
Blumenthal said that bicycling and walking currently receive between $700-$800 million per year in federal transportation funding. Blumenthal hopes that with the support of several key politicians including Oberstar that number could easily double.
The transportation authorization bill news conference will be webcast live on the Committee’s Web site at http://transporation.house.gov (click on link).