Glad to see the Green, Inc., blog of The New York Times report on the uproar, but more importantly, on the policy implications of Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood’s recent pronouncement there would be no distinction between motorized and non-motorized traffic. It’s a fair report, “Transportation Department Embraces Bikes and Business Groups Cry Foul,” that highlights an exchange from a House Appropriations hearing last week prompted by comments from Rep. Steve LaTourette (R-OH):
“If we’re going to spend $1 million on a road, we’re not going to have half of it go to a bike lane, and half of it go to cars?” [LaTourette] asked, according to a transcript of the hearing.
“My interpretation of that would be equal in the eyes of policymakers as what is the expenditure you make, what is the benefit you get,” responded Roy Kienitz, D.O.T.’s under secretary for policy. “And if the freight project offers the best bang, great, but if the bike project offers a good bang, great for them.”
“I don’t even understand how you get a bang for the buck out of a bicycle project,” Mr. LaTourette subsequently commented. “I mean what job is going to be created by having a bike lane?”
CNS News also reported on Secretary LaHood’s remarks and the reaction, “Obama Transportation Secretary: ‘This Is the End of Favoring Motorized Transportation at the Expense of Non-Motorized’.”