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BFB Spotlight: Illinois Department of Revenue
Bicycle Friendly Businesses come in all shapes and sizes. Government agencies, especially, are taking steps to make their departments more bike friendly. The Illinois Department of Revenue is one such agency and is also one of the newest Bronze Bicycle Friendly Businesses. We spoke with Terry Horstman, the department’s spokesperson, about the strides the department has made. Learn more about the latest round of Bicycle Friendly Business awardees here.
What does this award mean to the Illinois Department of Revenue?
This award is a significant step for the Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) to continue moving forward in the workplace and community with cycling promotion. IDOR hopes to grow the support and enthusiasm for cycling by demonstrating to other workplaces and the community the benefits of a bike friendly certification. Internally, this bike friendly certification will encourage new cyclists/commuters as well as provide positive feedback to the existing employee bike community.
Why did the organization apply in the first place?
IDOR has a large group of bike commuters and a long history of supporting cycling and sustainability. The bike friendly process was brought to IDOR’s attention by the cycling employees. After over a year of discussion with cycling commuters, the local area bike club, and continual efforts from the IDOR Sustainability Committee, we felt it was a good move forward for our organization, the bike commuting employees, and the area cycling community to pursue this certification as a way to continue to reach out to the employees and community about the benefits of cycling.
How would you describe the bike culture at the Illinois Department of Revenue?
We have an active bike commuting community within our organization. IDOR itself provides year-round protected bike parking, showers, and weather updates to our employees in addition to the ability to log, track and share total biking miles within the Department.
What is the biggest bike-friendly advancement the Department of Revenue has made?
The biggest advancement thus far has been the incorporation of indoor facility usage for bike parking and the use of modern technology to share bike commuting events, pictures, and miles.
Our organization would like to further our efforts of encouraging an even larger population of bike commuters by providing additional bike friendly education, pursuing a yearlong push for recording bike miles, and organizing ride information sharing in conjunction with the local bike club. In addition, we plan to develop stronger joint efforts between the Department’s sustainability committee and area sustainability committees, maintaining a continual lead among the State departments concerning the Bike-to-Work program, and encouraging other facilities to apply and work towards a bike friendly certification.
Learn more about the Bicycle Friendly Business program at bikeleague.org/business.