Monday, March 11, 2013

Legislative Update, Week 5

In the shadow of the CRC
Today the Legislature is going to dig into re-thinking the way we fund school transportation! It will hold a committee hearing on a bill that would permit forward-thinking (and backwards-thinking!) school districts to shift monies that had been restricted to yellow bus service to fund safe walking and biking facilities for kids getting to school on their own.  Let's have more of this retrograde thought!

Other than that, there's not much to report. 


Today, Monday, March 11th, at 1pm, the House Committee on Education will hold a public hearing on HB 2500 on school transportation funding. It will be in hearing room D.

Thursday, March 14th, the House Committee On Judiciary will hold a public hearing on HB 3047, which would lengthen the period of a suspended license. It will be at 1:00 PM, in hearing room 343.

Monday, March 25th, the Senate Committee On Business and Transportation will hold a public hearing on SB 756, which would permit specific donations to state Parks and Recreation for bike/ped trails. It will be at 3:00 PM in hearing room B.

Also on Monday, March 25th, the Senate Committee On Business and Transportation will hold a public hearing on SB 741, which requires helmet use during organized events, and SB 742, which raises the upper age for mandatory helmet use from 16 to 18. It will be at 3:00 PM in hearing room B

What's new?

Didn't see this bill for a carbon tax earlier.  House Bill 2792  "Imposes tax on each fuel supplier and utility based on amount of carbon in carbon-based fuel that is sold by fuel supplier to consumers in state or that is used to produce carbon-generated electricity supplied by utility to consumers in state."  It was sad to see the "Sustainable" City of Salem oppose this in its legislative positions.  I guess we'll see how the California cap-and-trade thing goes.  It's difficult to see Oregon jumping out to lead on this or something like it.

Didn't see anything else new...did you?

More updates after the jump.

Bridge Mania 

Here are the relevant bills:
Paying for the Roads
  •  House Joint Resolution 9 -"Proposes amendment to Oregon Constitution to allow revenue from taxes on motor vehicle fuel and ownership, operation or use of motor vehicles to be used for transportation projects that will prevent or reduce pollution and congestion created by use of motor vehicles."  No action.
  • House Bill 2276 would increase the gas tax.  No action.  
  • House Bill 2453 - "Requires persons operating certain high-mileage motor vehicles to pay per-mile road usage charge or flat annual road usage charge." No action
  • House Bill 2500 looks to expand the "types of costs that qualify as approved transportation costs for purposes of State School Fund distributions."  These would include "Expenditures made to improve  safety for students traveling to school by means that are not provided by the school district and that:
    (i) Include walking or using a bicycle, scooter, skateboard or similar device..." Public Hearing today.  This is great to see.  It may not be a game-changer, but it would certainly be a major rules change, and could be an important part of structural change in the way we think about and fund school transportation. The Portland BTA was recruiting parents and educators to testify.
  • Senate Bill 756 would allow "Department of Transportation to accept donations to State Parks and Recreation Department Fund for purpose of improving bicycle and pedestrian facilities. Permits registered owner of vehicle to make donation to fund when registration is renewed."  Public hearing for the 25th.
  • Senate Bill 247 would use lottery funds and creates an "Alternative Mode Transportation Fund. Requires that nine percent of net proceeds from Oregon State Lottery be deposited in Multimodal Transportation Fund, and that nine percent of net proceeds be deposited in Alternative Mode Transportation Fund. Continuously appropriates moneys in Alternative Mode Transportation Fund to Department of Transportation. Provides that moneys may only be used for capital improvements and operational costs of mass transit, passenger rail, bicycle and pedestrian projects."   No action.
  • House Bill 2310 to fund "ConnectOregon."  The Portland BTA is working to expand "multi-modal" to include bikes.  No action.
  • House Bill 3348 approaches the matter of the apparently stalled SB 247 and would expand ConnectOregon. "Requires that 18 percent of net proceeds from Oregon State Lottery be deposited in Multimodal Transportation Fund. Expands use of fund. Directs Department of Transportation, after consultation with Oregon Department of Aviation, to administer aeronautic and airport transportation projects selected from projects to be funded with moneys in Multimodal Transportation Fund."  It also includes language for passenger rail, transit, biking, and walking projects.  No action.
  • Studded tires.  House Bills 2277, 2278, and 2397 would add fees to offset the damage studded tires cause. Hearing held, but no amendments or further action yet.
  • 1899 License Tag
  • Senate Bill 769 "Requires registration of bicycles. Imposes $10 registration fee. Creates offense of failure to register bicycle. Punishes by presumptive fine of $25. Provides exemptions. Creates offense of failure to ensure bicycle registration. Punishes by presumptive fine of $25. Provides exemptions. Creates offense of failure to report change of ownership or change of address to Department of Transportation. Punishes by presumptive fine of $25. Establishes Bicycle Transportation Improvement Fund. Continuously appropriates moneys in fund to Department of Transportation for bicycle related transportation improvement projects."  No action.  (If you missed it on Friday, be sure to see the discussion of the repeal of the 1899-1913 bike tax/license law!)
Road Safety (and "Safety")
  • Senate Bill 9 filed by Senator Courtney would "increase the penalty [for using a cel phone while driving] from a Class D violation to a Class B violation, which means the maximum fine would increase from $250 to $1,000. The minimum fine would increase from $60 to $130." No amendments have been filed yet, and it hasn't budget from Committee.  It looks stuck, maybe. 
  • House Bill 2732 is a ban on headphone while on bike and allows mopeds on multi-use paths.  No action.
  • Senate Bill 332 would establish a "Task  Force  on  Bicycle  Safety."  Senator Jackie Winters proposed this, and the bill as introduced is mostly procedural and otherwise content-free at the moment.  No action.  
  • Senate Bill 741 would require persons "of any age to wear helmet when using bicycle, skateboard, scooter, in-line skates or roller skates when participating in organized exhibition, competition or contest." Senate Bill 742 would require kids "under 18 years of age to wear protective headgear while operating or riding on bicycle, riding on skateboard or scooter or using in-line skates or roller skates, on public or private land." Hearings scheduled.
  • House Bill 2115 would broaden the definition of intoxicating substances for the purposes of DUI citations.   No action.
  • HB 3047 would double the length of a motor vehicle license suspension from 10 to 20 years.  Public hearing.
  • House Bill 3320 would create a new residential speed limit of 20 mph.  No action.
All of this year's legislative updates are tagged 2013 Legislative Session.


Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

BikePortland with a longer note about SB 756.

J.Maus writes about it in terms of the Scenic Bikeway Program. But ODOT, not Parks and Rec, would do stuff in the road right-of-way, so it's not clear what is really going on.

A commenter calls it a "bake sale" approach to funding, and J.Maus talks about the "symbolic" value of some folks voluntarily funding a program.

It may be more "feel-good" than structural.

HB 2500 seems way more important as a funding bill, and it's interesting that Maus wrote about SB 756 rather than HB 2500.

Anonymous said...

Apparently there's a bill to study extending the commuter rail from Wilsonville to Salem.