SCAG to adopt $500B Transportation Plan: Will stakeholders be heard?

On Wednesday, March 21 a Special Meeting of the Regional Council and Policy Committees (agenda) will vote on motions and staff recommendations related to the Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy. It will be the last time changes regarding budget, policy, and projects. In other words, it is a big deal for active transportation!

There are three ways you can help support this:

  1. Attend SCAG Joint Policy Meeting on 3/21
  2. Sign onto our comment letter regarding how SCAG allocates it’s agency operating budget
  3. Contact your Regional Council Member and tell them you support Active Transportation (list of RC members by city)

The active transportation and public health community came out in full force at the March 1st Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) Regional Council (RC) Meeting (comprised of elected officials) and provided public comments. Passion and conviction shown by the active transportation community at meeting after meeting fires us up and creates a sense of urgency for elected officials. It is critical to demonstrate this continued support for active transportation at the upcoming March 21st SCAG Regional Council meeting.  This meeting is the last opportunity for amending the Regional Transportation Plan and Sustainable Communities Strategies (RTP/SCS).

Regional Council members are being called on to respond to the continual outpouring of requests from community leaders regarding active transportation, public health, and clean air, many of the issues outlined in our RTP/SCS comment letter.

Advocates are working hard to beseech SCAG’s policy leadership’s response to regional input by amending the 2012 RTP’s policy and creating the following regional initiatives:

  1. Regional Active Transportation funding committee and plan,
  2. Regional Complete Streets Policy plan,
  3. Regional Safe Routes to School plan.

There is an opportunity to fund the implementation of the 3 regional initiatives through amending SCAG’s Overall Work Program (OWP) for 2012-13. The OWP details SCAG staff transportation relations activities for each fiscal year, including transportation planning and studies required by state and federal laws and authorized by the SCAG Regional Council.

All 3 initiatives are requested for completion by 2014.  These plans would increase the capacity for multi-modal planning and the evaluation of health impacts from transportation projects. The plans would provide guidance to the region, cities, and county transportation plans to prepare and provide relevant local data for the next RTP.  We estimate that at least one million dollars should be programmed to Active Transportation planning over a two year period: $300,000 per year for each of the three regional plans – The Complete Streets Plan, The Strategic Funding Plan, and the Safe Routes to School Plan – and $100,000 for Active Transportation Committee

We have drafted a sign-on letter to support modifying SCAG’s OWP for 2012-13 for active transportation regional planning. We are submitting this to SCAG and Caltrans by April 2nd, the public comment deadline. Please read and sign onto the letter, view here

Email signatories to by midnight on March 29, 2012, please include your full name and organization or city.

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