The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is leading the response to FDOT’s decisions to disproportionately cut nearly $25million in Transportation Enhancement dollars from their budget in a response to a federal mandate to spend less. We understand that this is a rough time for government agencies and, well, everyone’s budgets – but while TE and other bicycle/walking project money represents less than 3% of Florida’s transportation budget, FDOT wants to take almost 22% of their budget cuts from where we need it most. The South Florida Bike Coalition believes the the State of Florida should be spending more money to promote active transportation, not less.
SFBC joins Rails-to-Trails, the Florida Bicycle Association and local partners in asking you to defend our state funding for bicycling and other active transportation projects. Take a moment to reach out to the policymakers who can keep our planned bicycle and pedestrian projects off the chopping block.
You can email Governor Crist, candidates Alex Sink and Rick Scott, Florida State Transportation Development Administrator Brad Thoburn and FDOT Assistant Secretary for Intermodal Systems Development Debbie Hunt all at once through the Rails-to-Trails website or individually by clicking on their names.
A few things to know:
- Transportation Enhancements are federally funded and require investment in projects that expand mobilitiy options.
- Together with the Recreational Trail Program (RTP), they represent LESS than 3% of Florida’s transportation budget but are now facing MORE than 21% of cuts.
- Active transportation projects SAVE Floridians money, EMPOWER those who do not drive (for choice/age/cost or other reasons), improves SAFETY by relieving traffic congestion, increasing ‘eyes on the street’ and providing better facilities for all road users.
What we are asking our policymakers:
“Please direct FDOT to meet Florida’s critical unmet needs for safe and convenient active transportation and trail facilities by fully obligating TE and RTP funds each year, and compensating for past neglect by using funding flexibility to shift additional funds into these programs over time.”
We want you (Governor/Candidate/FDOT leader) to protect Floridians who walk, bicycle and use our trails.