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LaHood meets with Portland’s bike advocates

Portland Mayor Sam Adams and US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (photo: Portland Mercury)

Portland Mayor Sam Adams and US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (photo: Portland Mercury)

Speaking to a small group of bicycling advocates at Oregon’s Bicycle Transportation Alliance (BTA), Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood acknowledged that times are tough for infrastructure investment.  “Do you know how hard it is to find $100 billion [to cut out of the budget]? It’s not easy,” LaHood said in response to a question, according to the Portland Business Journal.

But bicycling advocates made it clear that we’re not going to stop fighting for a share of the budget to support bicycling, a cost-saving and economy-boosting form of transportation.  “Our national partners have been talking with members of both delegations to focus on the business side of bicycling,” Rob Sadowsky, BTA’s executive director and League board member, told the Business Journal, referring to the messaging at the National Bike Summit. “The $100 million biking industry in Portland — it includes people who make parts and accessories — can be shared throughout the state.”

The intimate reception held for 70 transportation officials, congressmen and staff, and staff of the US Department of Transportation discussed ways that local, state and national partners can work together to reduce fatalities through partnering on big bold visions such as FHWA’s Toward Zero Deaths.

On his blog, Secretary LaHood called BTA a group that is  “working hard to enhance livability in Portland through transportation innovations.” We’re glad to see they are effectively spreading the message that bicycling is good for the economy and good for communities.

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