Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has worked with coalition partners at the state and local levels to secure government funding for active transportation. These active transportation policy success stories provide examples of some of those victories, illustrating unique funding and policy models, grassroots strategies, and coalition building that may be applicable to your state.
Do you have a success story to share? Let us know! We may be able to feature it here or on the TrailBlog.
In 2013, California’s Senate Bill 99 created California’s first active transportation program. Earlier in the year, the governor had proposed cuts to active transportation funding. A coalition of advocates—including Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, the Coalition for Recreational Trails, the Safe Routes to School National Partnership, California WALKS, the California Bicycle Coalition, PolicyLink, TransForm and the Public Health Institute—pushed back on this plan.
First approved by voters in 2000, the Clean Ohio Fund is a $400 million state bond initiative that restores, protects and connects Ohio’s natural and urban places by preserving open space and farmland, improving outdoor recreation and attracting investment and economic development. The program, which does not expire, is maintained through the reissuance of bonds, which require $2.3 million in annual debt services for each $25 million in bonds and does not raise taxes for Ohioans.
Florida’s history of supporting environmental conservation and recreation dates back to the establishment of the Land Acquisition Trust Fund in 1963. Throughout the years, a number of programs have helped support this important trust fund—and today, Florida seeks to build on the success of these programs to fund other conservation and trail initiatives.
When Pennsylvania passed a comprehensive transportation bill, Act 89, in 2013, it was a big win for walking and biking in the state. The bill allocates funding for all modes of surface transportation—roads, transit, and yes, even walking and biking.
Thanks to the grassroots mobilization of thousands of cyclists and trail users in Spring 2016, legislation that could have had negative repercussions for active transportation around the country officially died with the close of the Tennessee General Assembly’s annual session.
On May 5, 2016, the Delaware General Assembly passed Senate Bill (SB) 130—the Complete Communities bill—which takes a unique policy approach whereby the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) and local communities work together to create more bikeable, walkable communities around transit.