Dear Campaign Advocate,
As you may know, a lot has transpired during the past few weeks relating to efforts to promote trails, walking and bicycling. We want to bring three key developments to your attention:
U.S. Representative John Mica announces next transportation reauthorization draft
On July 7, Rep. Mica (R-Fla.) held a press conference announcing his draft of the U.S. House of Representative’s "Transportation Reauthorization Bill." Our chief concern with the draft bill is that it would do away with dedicated funding for active transportation (trails, walking and bicycling), instead providing states with block grants to distribute as they choose. Based on what we’ve seen in the past, we can be sure that such a change will result in dramatically lower funding to active transportation in many states.
In response, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) submitted an op-ed that was printed in The Hill, a beltway insider newspaper. The op-ed points out that seven communities (and counting) in Rep. Mica’s district have passed "blunt resolutions opposing Mica’s plan to give block grants to state DOTs."
For more information about the bill, see this summary analysis developed by our partners at Transportation for America.
On Tuesday, July 19, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, released an outline of the committee’s bipartisan draft reauthorization. RTC is working to ensure the Senate bill, and any future versions of such legislation, will re-affirm critical dedicated funding for active transportation.
TIGER III announced
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced a third round of the highly popular Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program. As with TIGER and TIGER II, we encourage you to apply for TIGER III funding to realize some of the aims of your Campaign for Active Transportation case statements, or other active transportation goals.
On Monday, July 18, USDOT held a seminar on "How to Compete for a USDOT TIGER Grant," which is now available for viewing online. This highly informative session addresses a wealth of questions about the TIGER III application process, and is a must-view for potential applicants.
The pre-application process will be open on or before August 22, with pre-applications due October 3 (for more, see Question 3 of the TIGER III FAQ).
Community Transformation Grants: More information
A few weeks ago, we notified you of the impending deadline for submission of a letter of intent (LOI) for the new Community Transformation Grant (CTG) program through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Hopefully, many of you submitted LOIs. Even if you did not submit an LOI, another agency or organization in your region may have done so.
Please let us know if you are aware of any submissions from your community.
We encourage you to consider including technical assistance from RTC as part of your application. Trail networks and connecting corridors demonstrably improve public health in the communities in which they are found. With our history of negotiating and completing trail and rail-trail infrastructure, we are well-suited to aid in your efforts. Read more about RTC’s services.
As always, contact RTC with any questions.
Vice President of Program