We are excited to announce that the Safe Routes to School Bill, House Bill 3230, took one more giant step this last week at the capitol in Salem.
This is exciting news because Oregon has not had dedicated Safe Routes to School funds since 2012!
The House Committee on Transportation Policy voted to move forward HB 3230—with a recommendation to pass—to the Ways and Means Committee! House Bill 3230 would dedicate $16 million annually to Safe Routes to School programs across the state; fund street safety projects within a one-mile radius of school and prioritize Title 1 schools.
The next step for House Bill 3230 is the Ways and Means Committee, a required step for any bill that passes a House or Senate Committee and has a dollar amount attached. This is the committee that decides which bills receive funding and how much.
Following support from Rep. Lively and Sen. Taylor, members of the For Every Kid Coalition provided testimony, including: Kim Curley (Commute Options Advocate and Mom from Bend); Shane MacRhodes (Advocate and Dad from Eugene); and LeeAnne Fergason (For Every Kid Coalition Manager). Next, the committee held a quick work session and discussion, where members debated the importance of a comprehensive Safe Routes to School program. Minutes later, the Committee voted, Chair Caddy McKeown hit the gavel on her desk, and sent our Safe Routes to School Bill to the Ways and Means Committee with a recommendation to pass.
There will be more opportunities to testify and submit written testimony in the near future, as our goal now is to ensure that HB 3230 is included in the next Transportation Package. Please keep an eye out for emails about this bill and how you can message lawmakers in support.