Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bikes Mean Business - Reflecting on the 2013 National Bike Summit

In my role as your Executive Director, I've had the privilege to attend the annual National Bike Summit held in Washington D.C. for the past two years.

Held each March, the Summit brings more than 750 bicycle advocates from across the country together to rally for important federal transportation dollars needed to make bicycling safer and more accessible for us and the people we represent who ride.

SDCBC Representatives at the Summit with Congresswoman Susan Davis
I've just returned, inspired and proud for the work that we do. The response was very positive and we can all take pride in the team that represented San Diego County at this years Summit. Together with our colleagues from all fifty states and beyond, we learned from our hosts and leaders at the League of American Bicyclists (LAB), the priority issues which we all "took to the hill" on a snowy, cold morning last Wednesday.  Our San Diego team met with our Congressional Representatives including Rep. Scott Peters, Rep. Susan Davis and staff from Rep. Duncan Hunter, Rep. Juan Vargas and Rep.
Darrell Issa. Additionally, I had the opportunity to talk proudly of the work we are doing in San Diego to the office of Senator Diane Feinstein, along with my colleagues from across our great state of California.  One of the issues we brought forward in our meetings this year, and this years Summit theme was that Bikes Mean Business. The economic impact of our local bicycling industry continues to grow and in California alone last year, the retail industry generated nearly $1.2 billion in sales and created 9,741 jobs. Our representatives from California and across the nation heard the call last week. Bikes Mean Business!

At the conclusion of the days events, everyone came back together to share their successes and hear from Andy Clarke, President of the LAB and Rep. Earl Blumenhauer, of Oregon, a true champion for our cause on Capitol Hill (see attachment). That experience of talking locally but bonding together nationally for more funding for bicycle infrastructure was very memorable and rewarding. Thank you for the opportunity to represent you.

Andy Hanshaw

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