Received an email with a subject near and dear to us.
It’s hard to believe that our little one Delaney just turned 1 ½. She’s learning new words every day and surprising us with all that she understands. One lesson that we impart on our near-daily walks is that Delaney absolutely must always – always – hold our hands. See, we live in Southwest Portland.
Like many neighborhoods all over the Metro area, we have lots and lots of kids and almost no sidewalks – even on busy streets. Last week, I watched a family unload their bikes from the back of an SUV at a local parking lot because it was the only way that they could teach their youngest how to ride. Two weeks ago, I watched a neighborhood family trudge through puddles and mud – rather than brave a busy street without a shoulder or sidewalks – en route to school. I know it’s not just my neighborhood. All over the Metro region, a lack of pedestrian infrastructure leaves many families feeling like the only safe way to get around is by car – and that is if they are lucky enough to afford to own a vehicle.
Into this setting, I bring a chance for some good news. My family is lucky to live in Portland, where a ballot measure – led by the Fix Our Streets campaign – will direct much-needed dollars to a variety of projects if it passes (OLCV endorsed this measure and we sure hope Portland residents will, too!). But we need your help today to bring dollars not only to my neighborhood, but to yours as well.
Our Metro government is currently determining how to spend $17.43 million dollars in federal funds earmarked for transportation. Metro Council proposed dedicating $1.5 million over three years to Safe Routes to School education and encouragement programs. This is a great start. However, the current proposal does not dedicate any funding to Safe Routes to School infrastructure projects. We need dedicated funding to make streets safe for kids.
Metro Council’s Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation (JPACT) will vote to allocate these funds next Thursday, April 21st. Over the last year and half, folks like you have sent letters, emails, and made phone calls to all the elected officials sitting on JPACT. Our community has spoken, and we have all requested the same thing: dedicated funding for Safe Routes to School programs AND infrastructure.
As a mom, I cannot thank you enough,
Christy Splitt, External Affairs Director OLCV
Paid For By The Oregon League of Conservation Voters
Oregon League of Conservation Voters
133 SW 2nd Avenue Suite 200
Portland OR 97204 United States