Buffer

News

BCCC Annual General Meeting – Dec. 11

The British Columbia Cycling Coalition 2011 Annual General Meeting is coming up soon. Please join us.

Date: Sunday, December 11, 2011
Time: Noon to 3:00 pm
Location: Fulford Hall, 2591 Fulford Ganges Road, Saltspring Island

The business meeting including the election of new directors will be noon to 1:30 PM. Please consider  helping move cycling forward in BC by joining the BCCC Board of Directors.
This will be followed by a discussion regarding building momentum for a Provincial Cycling Strategy and province wide cycling touring network from 1:30 to 3:00 PM.

Here are the ferry schedules:
http://www.bcferries.com/schedules/

The Fulford Spokespeople hold a ride every Sunday at 9:30. BCCC members are invited to participate. On Dec 11th, Darcy Green will wait for BCCC members arriving on the 9:00 ferry from Swartz Bay before setting out.

Island Pathways is having their AGM on Saturday, Dec. 10 and there will be a social afterwards.

If you are interested in making a weekend on the Island out of it, stay tuned for more details or join our email list.

I will be adding travel details as well soon.
Posted in Organization | Leave a comment

Vote for Cycling on November 19

Please vote and encourage 10 of your friends to vote in the civic elections on November 19th. Phone them, text them, email them, buy them brunch or dinner or for that special friend, invite them on a vote date. Nothing says love like voting for improved cycling and safety.

Go to your city’s web site to find out more about where and when to vote.

Several BCCC member cycling organizations have done an excellent job of surveying candidates on cycling issues.

Metro Vancouver
The Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition (VACC) has surveyed candidates in Metro Vancouver and placed the results at:
http://vacc.bc.ca/content/news

Greater Victoria
The Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition has prepared a great website on candidates cycling positions around the region:
http://gvcc.bc.ca/2011VictoriaMunicipalElection.html

Abbotsford
The Abbotsford Cycling Action Group (ACAG) has posted survey results for cycling and other issues at:
http://abbotsfordmatters.blogspot.com/

Comox
The Comox Valley Cycling Coalition has posted candidate surveys for Comox here:
http://cyclecv.squarespace.com/candidate-question-2011-comox/

Courtney
The Comox Valley Cycling Coalition has posted candidate surveys for Courtney here:

Conservation Voters of BC
The Conservation Voters of BC have endorsed candidates around BC including long-time BCCC members and champions of cycling David Cubberley who is running for Mayor of Saanich and Victoria Councillor John Luton.
http://conservationvoters.ca/bc-municipal-election-2011

Other Candidate Surveys?
Please let us know in the comment section if there are any other candidate cycling surveys or information that you would like included.

Get Your Vote on encourages young people to vote:
http://www.getyourvoteon.ca/

Election Updates
Follow the BCCC on Twitter and Facebook for ongoing election coverage:
http://twitter.com/bccycle
http://www.facebook.com/bccycle

Posted in Campaigns | 2 Comments

Mayors Approve Cycling and Transit Funding!

Great news! Metro Vancouver mayors voted overwhelmingly in favour of funding for improved transit and cycling with 16 voting for and only 6 voting against. Thanks to the mayors who supported the funding; those of you who emailed and phoned them; and to the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition for spreading the word to their members!
Support the Mayors Who Voted for the Funding
Especially with an election coming up soon, it is important to support these mayors who showed bold leadership by volunteering and donating to their campaigns. I suspect the provincial government will be watching the municipal elections carefully. If the mayors who voted for the funding are reelected, this will help give both provincial and regional politicians the mandate they need to provide further funding for the other transit and cycling improvements that the region so badly needs. This includes increasing cycling funding to at least $23 million a year, the UBC Line and rapid transit in Surrey.
Good News for the Whole Province
This decision is also important to the rest of the province where cycling and transit improvements are also badly needed. With success in the Lower Mainland, the province will likely be more inclined to give other regions the funding sources that they need to improve sustainable transportation.
Email Premier Clark
As the next step, the approval of the 2 cent gas tax, is up to the provincial government, it is a good idea to send a message of support to Premier Clark who has said her government will approve the tax and work with the mayors to find an alternative to the property tax:
For
The mayors, chief and councilors who supported the funding are:
Anmore – Mayor Heather Anderson, howard.carley@anmore.com 
Belcarra – Mayor Ralph Drew, rdrew@belcarra.ca 
Bowen Island – Councillor Peter Frinton, bim@bimbc.ca
Coquitlam – Mayor Richard Stewart, rstewart@coquitlam.ca
Langley City – Mayor Peter Fassbender, mayor@langleycity.ca
Lion’s Bay – Mayor Brenda Broughton, bbroughton@telus.net
Maple Ridge – Mayor Ernie Daykin, daykin@mapleridge.ca
North Vancouver City - Councillor Bob Fearnley, bfearnley@cnv.org
North Vancouver District – Mayor Richard Walton, waltonr@dnv.org
Port Coquitlam – Mayor Greg Moore, mooreg@portcoquitlam.ca
Port Moody – Mayor Joe Trasolini joe.trasolini@cityofportmoody.com 
Surrey – Mayor Dianne Watts, dlwatts@surrey.ca
Tsawwassen First Nation – Chief Kim Baird, kbaird@tsawwassenfirstnation.com 
Vancouver –  Mayor Gregor Robertson, gregor.robertson@vancouver.ca
West Vancouver – Mayor Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, goldsmith-jones@westvancouver.ca
White Rock – Mayor Catherine Ferguson, ferguson@city.whiterock.bc.ca
Against
Those who voted against the funding are:
Burnaby – Mayor Derek Corrigan, mayor.corrigan@burnaby.ca
Richmond – Mayor Malcolm Brodie, mbrodie@richmond.ca
Langley Township – Rick Green, rgreen@tol.bc.ca
Delta – Mayor Lois Jackson, LJackson@corp.delta.bc.ca
Pitt Meadows – Mayor Don MacLean, dmaclean@pittmeadows.bc.ca
New Westminster – Mayor Wayne, Wright, wright@city.new-westminster.bc.ca
Media Coverage
As usual, the anti-tax anti-everything crowd is busy in the comment sections. Never hurts to throw some pro transit and cycling comments into the mix.
Posted in News | 2 Comments

Urge Your Mayor to Vote for Transit and Cycling Funding

On October 7, the Metro Vancouver Mayors Council will be voting on the funding package for TransLink’s Moving Forward Plan. This package includes an increase in cycling funding from $3 million to $6 million per year, a key step to the $23 million per year that TransLink is proposing to met regional transportation goals. Please email or phone them (contact information is below) and urge them to vote for this plan.

It also includes badly needed transit improvements all over the region that will benefit cyclists. In particular, the Evergreen Line will make it much easier to access the TriCities from other parts of the region. According to TransLink “By 2014, annual bus and SeaBus service will increase by 415,000 hours, or 7%, providing more service around the region to improve reliability, reduce crowding and serve new demand from population growth and the expanded U-Pass BC program.”
As an interim measure to allow these improvements to go ahead, the Moving Forward funding package contains a provisional small increase in property taxes that will go into effect next spring if other sources of revenue are not found. Even if new sources are not found, the property tax increase involves only a commitment for 2012 and 2013.
Source: TransLink

As shown in the chart in red as New Revenue Source, this represents only 13% of the total revenue. While this is a concern, the Provincial Government has committed to working with the mayors to develop alternate funding sources including road pricing, tolls on existing bridges vehicle levies and carbon tax revenue. Depending on the implementation, in addition to raising revenue to fund better transportation choices, these funding measures can reduce demand for driving and thus help existing roads to be used more efficiently thus reducing pollution and congestion.

Transit is Good for the Whole Region
While not all cities in the region get the same levels of transit improvement, these improvements benefit everyone in the region. Pollution and greenhouse gas emissions do not observe city boundaries. Residents of the region also travel between cities in their daily lives. The region’s economy depends on cost effective sustainable transportation to give people transportation choices and to enable for the efficient movement of goods by reducing the need for travel by automobile. As well, the cities whose mayors haven’t yet committed to voting for Moving Forward have benefited more from past improvements paid for by all taxpayers.
Email or Phone Your Mayor
Please email or phone your mayor and urge them to vote for the Moving Forward funding package. Consider including:
-       What transit and cycling improvements mean for you, your family and community
-       A statement that you will encourage the province to work with the mayors find other sources of revenue
Letter Writing Tips
Mayor Derek Corrigan, mayor.corrigan@burnaby.ca
Mayor Malcolm Brodie, mbrodie@richmond.ca
Langley Township – Rick Green, rgreen@tol.bc.ca
Delta – Mayor Lois Jackson, LJackson@corp.delta.bc.ca
Mayor Darrell Mussatto, dmussatto@cnv.org
Pitt Meadows – Mayor Don MacLean, dmaclean@pittmeadows.bc.ca
Lion’s Bay – Mayor Brenda Broughton, bbroughton@telus.net
New Westminster – Mayor Wayne, Wright wright@city.new-westminster.bc.ca
Port Coquitlam - Mayor Greg Moore, mooreg@portcoquitlam.ca
White Rock - Mayor Catherine Ferguson, ferguson@city.whiterock.bc.ca
Maple Ridge - Mayor Ernie Daykin, daykin@mapleridge.ca
Surrey - Mayor Dianne Watts, dlwatts@surrey.ca
Coquitlam - Mayor Richard Stewart, rstewart@coquitlam.ca
Vancouver –  Mayor Gregor Robertson, gregor.robertson@vancouver.ca
W. Van - Mayor Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, goldsmith-jones@westvancouver.ca
Langley City - Mayor Peter Fassbender, mayor@langleycity.ca
N. Van District - Mayor Richard Walton, waltonr@dnv.org
Join the Facebook Page Supporting Moving Forward
More Info
TransLink’s Moving Forward website:
Details on the Moving Forward Plan can be found at:
Media and BLOG Coverage
Posted in Campaigns | Leave a comment

Writing Letters to Elected Officials

Letters can be a very effective way of convincing public officials to address an issue. For each letter received, They often assume that several hundred other people feel the same about the issue. Here are a few tips.

Addressing Elected Officials

  • Politicians need to concern themselves more with the big picture and are interested in how your ideas will affect the larger community (and its voters)
  • Be less technical and more anecdotal 
  • Get to the point and be brief:
    • Keep letters under a page (use appendices if you really need to add some technical detail). 
    • Exceptions are when you are suggesting language for a plan or policy. In these situations, it may be necessary to spell everything out, but these are the exceptions. 
  • Try to provide something before asking for something in return. For instance, instead of protesting to raise the issue of poor cycling facilities, ask the leader(s) responsible to take a tour of the facilities in question with you. That way, you can incorporate leaders in the solution. Also, if they agree to a tour, you’ll have engaged them in the process and begun to hold them accountable.

Letter Content

  • Confine your letter to a single issue.
  • Write in a natural style.
  • Letters should be factual and polite
  • Take special care not to sound threatening, aggressive or offensive. You want to win a friend, if not now, then on other issues in the future.
  • Be positive and constructive – make a clear request and write as if the reader is open to reasoned argument.
  • Carefully plan your opening sentence; make it short and interesting. Particularly if you are communicating to criticize, it helps to start with appreciation or praise for the recipient’s past activities.
  • Don’t plead.
  • For problems, personal accounts of how this issue has impacted you and your family, friends and community can be very persuasive.
  • For improvements, describe the benefits for you and your family, friends and community
  • Relate experiences elsewhere that demonstrate the effectiveness of improvements you want
  • Say a little about yourself if you want to – for example something about your occupation or background.
  • If there is a problem that requires remedial action, (if possible) request a specific action from the official and show your own willingness to work for a solution. Don’t merely be critical; close with constructive suggestions and a positive tone.
  • If any follow-up is planned, let them know the time frame.
  • Use a conclusion that encourages a reply

Use Email

  • As most people have mobile devices, email tends to be more effective than pen and paper.
  • Include the text of letter in the body of the email and not as an attachment if possible. This makes it easier to read on a smart phone.

Sources:
Posted in Campaigns | 1 Comment