Blog

What Comes After Covid?

It has now been about a year and half since the world turned upside down; a year since the renewed call for racial justice shook cities across the United States and the world. As we near the end of shutdowns, masks, and social distancing, we can’t go back to “normal.” The world has changed— we have all changed. We have to move toward what’s next. The good news is that what’s next can be determined by everyday people making and advocating for small improvements to make their communities more equitable, healthy, and safe. Here are a few of the goals that I have been hearing from communities along with stories and resources that give me hope that we can keep working toward those goals as we build what comes next.

House Transportation Bill Rolls Along

Last week the House of Representatives passed a five-year, $715 billion dollar transportation reauthorization bill called the INVEST in America Act. The bill includes significant increases in funding for Safe Routes to School, and reinstates the requirement for each state to have a full time Safe Routes to School Coordinator.  On a broader level, it also increases funding for bicycling and walking overall, and has a stronger focus on Complete Streets and safety for vulnerable road users.

Parks + Connections, an Opportunity for Stronger Community Engagement in Tucson

In Tucson, Arizona, a new, 10-year bond package for parks and connections is an opportunity to transform how the city does community engagement.

House Transportation Bill Takes Even More Steps for Safe Routes

On Friday, the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee introduced the INVEST in America Act, their version of the surface transportation bill. It looks great for bicycling and walking. Similar to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) bill released last week, it includes programs and policies that promote bicycling and walking through significantly increased funding for active transportation infrastructure.

Senate Transportation Bill Is Good News for Safe Routes to School

Update May 27, 2021: The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed their Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act of 2021 on a unanimous 20-0 vote. Congratulations to the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy for winning an amendment that adds $200 million per year over 5 years for their new Connecting America's Active Transportation (CAAT) grant program.  The program would provide larger grants to local communities to help them built interconnected biking, walking and rolling networks.

Making Sense of Infrastructure Stimulus, Earmarks, and Surface Transportation Reauthorization

For national news followers, it’s hard to open the paper (err - scroll Twitter) and not be bombarded with headlines about President Biden’s plans for infrastructure stimulus and the re-emergence of earmarks after a decade-long moratorium. We are paying close attention to these developments, however, our organization’s federal advocacy efforts remain focused on the reauthorization of a surface transportation bill.

Designated Projects, AKA Earmarks