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Local bike infrastructure bill heads to governor

Original post made on Aug 28, 2014

A proposed new method for communities to help fund bike paths and trails has made its way to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk by way of Senate Bill 1183, introduced by State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord).

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, August 27, 2014, 4:47 PM

Comments (9)

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Posted by JT
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 7:59 am

Yet another potential expense added to vehicle registration, on top of the ridiculous SMOG checks. Which for certain vehicles built after a certain year is a joke, perpetuated by the entrenched smog check industry. Just make it illegal to disable your smog devices and require car companies to install kill switches if disabled.

How about creating a bicycle registration system that self funds?

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Posted by Peter
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 8:06 am

Excellent legislation. I hope Governor Brown signs it. We need to encourage transportation other than cars, and this is an inexpensive method of doing so.

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Posted by Herman Glates
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 8:43 am

Aren’t you glad they added a bike lane to the Benicia bridge? I think I saw someone using that bike lane once, a couple years ago, maybe. Ok, I’ve never actually seen someone use it, but at least it’s there!

Plus, we had to add that bike lane!! The only way to get the bridge built was to get the environmentalist to drop their lawsuits. Building the bike lane made them happy. Don’t you want to make people happy?

Of course, the bridge cost $1.26 billion to build, quadruple the original cost. It probably didn’t cost too much extra to add the bike lane, right?

Think about that the next time you’re stuck in traffic, looking at that empty bike lane. You could avoid all that traffic if you’d only bike to work!!!

Hurray for liberals!!!

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Posted by ddmom
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 9:46 am

I am all for adding more bike lanes if it would mean the bikers would get off the city streets! I am so tired of trying to avoid all the bikers on the streets of Danville. If you can't bike and keep up with the traffic, then you don't belong in the road with the cars.

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Posted by Julie
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 10:55 am

That's so fitting that we would continue to tax drivers to make biking better. Heaven forbid they should actually tax the bikers! Maybe we can tax the drivers to add special lanes for them where they don't have to stop at lights and stop signs, too -- oh wait, nevermind, they already don't stop.

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Posted by prinzrob
a resident of another community
on Aug 28, 2014 at 5:07 pm

Funny you should mention that JT, as this bill actually started out as a $5 surcharge on new bike sales. However, after the financials were analyzed it was determined that the cost of implementing the program would be more than the amount it would take in, and that although a small fee the additional amount would still discourage some people from buying and using bikes altogether. As such the bill was transformed from a bicycle sales surcharge to a car registration surcharge, although nobody seriously expects any counties to ever implement it. A supermajority vote of 66.67% in favor of the surcharge is needed for it to be applied anywhere in the state, so you can rest at ease that the bicyclists will not be coming for your $5 anytime soon.

The reason this bill was proposed in the first place was to combat the notion that non-drivers do not contribute toward the cost of street and road construction and maintenance. However, that notion was already false in the first place, since in California less than 35% of the transportation spending comes from user fees like gas taxes and car registrations. Most of the funding comes from non-user fees like sales, property, income, and payroll taxes that everyone pays, regardless of how much they drive. Keep this in mind the next time you hear about a hugely expensive freeway, bridge, or tunnel project, that everyone contributes to that people with cars are not allowed to use.

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Posted by Cyclist
a resident of Danville
on Aug 28, 2014 at 11:21 pm

Bikes do a lot less damage to road infrastructure than cars or trucks do. Every cyclist I know also drives a car and will be included in this new tax. To Herman, I have ridden the Benicia Bridge many times on my bicycle, and see other cyclists out there nearly every time. It is an especially nice ride to make a loop that includes the Carquinez Bridge as well. Get out of your car and try it, you might like it! ANYTHING that allows bikes and cars to peacefully coexist, and keeps everyone safe, is something I'll vote for.

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Posted by Cyclist2
a resident of Danville
on Aug 29, 2014 at 9:29 am

I've ridden over the two bridges also. I have friends that do that ride often. I personally don't like riding next to cars going 70 mph and then riding thru Vallejo where you might get shot and back past oil refineries in Martinez. I also pay over $13,000 in property tax each year, license on two cars, sales tax, etc.

A study found that cars do more damage to the roads per mile than paid in gas tax. Bikes do almost zero damage. Oh, and then there's all the broken glass and litter left on the side of the road by??? Not cyclists!

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Posted by dbrower
a resident of Danville
on Sep 4, 2014 at 4:58 pm

Dear Julie,

"That's so fitting that we would continue to tax drivers to make biking better. Heaven forbid they should actually tax the bikers! "

All the bikers are already being taxed, with sales, property, and the auto taxes they pay on the vehicles that pretty much all of them already own as well. When riding, they're doing less damage to roads than motor vehicles and reducing traffic and demand for parking. When cycling, they're more likely to be patronizing local businesses than driving further to get a "cheaper" price.

Now, personally, I'd be more in favor of additional taxes on gasoline/diesel than the vehicle itself to pay for transportation infrastructure -- That disincents stupid driving and stupid vehicles.

And I love the 4th bore, and the Sycamore/Crow Canyon aux lanes.


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