128 Second St. NW, Barberton, OH 44203

Advocacy and legislative news 2015 and beyond

by Ruth Kaser for Cycling Articles

RD Bike Shop receives and supports Bike Cleveland. The newsletter shares the good works being done in the Cleveland area. The 2015 in review included news of the Federal Transportation Bill. Last March, the Bike Cleveland team went to Washington D.C. as part of the Ohio Delegation to the National Bike Summit. The main item on the agenda was preserving federal funding for bikes and pedestrians in a new federal transportation bill. The members met with staff from Senators Brown and Portman, as well as several House representatives to express the critical need for preserving or growing funding. The result? The FAST Act was passed. It not only keeps, but grows funding over the next five years.

The Ohio Bicycle Federation (OBF) There are several bills currently in Ohio’s 131st General Assembly supported by the OBF.  

  • HB 110 Brandon’s Law: Failure to stop after accident – increase penalty.1.  Raises the penalty for failure to stop after an accident, when the offense results in death or an injury, from a felony of the third degree to a felony of the second degree. This bill passed unanimously in the House Judiciary committee and the full House and is being reviewed by the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. OBF provided proponent testimony on September 30. http://ohiosenate.gov/committee/criminal-justice#
  • HB 154 / SB 192: Motor vehicles-safe passing distance from bicycles/malfunctioning traffic lights.1. Motorists must provide at least 3 feet when passing cyclists. 2. Provides that when a traffic signal fails to detect a vehicle, the driver may proceed as if the signal is malfunctioning. HB 154 passed in the House Armed Services, Veterans Affairs and Public Safety Committee. The companion SB 192 is being reviewed by the Senate Transportation, Commerce and Labor Committee. OBF provided proponent testimony on June 10. http://www.ohiohouse.gov/committee/armed-services-veterans-affairs-and-public-safety
  • HB 88: Electronics communications devices – restrict usage
    1. Texting while driving raised from a secondary offense to a primary offense. Police officers may stop a vehicle if operator is observed texting while driving.
    2. Prohibits cellphone use in school zones and construction zones. HB 88 is being reviewed by the House Armed Services, Veterans Affairs and Public Safety Committee. Another bill HB 146 has passed the Senate Criminal Justice Committee and the Senate and is being reviewed by the House Judiciary Committee. OBF provided interested party testimony on Oct 13. We would like HB 146 to incorporate legislation from HB 88.
    http://www.ohiohouse.gov/committee/judiciary
  • HB 107: Person or neighborhood association – request reduced speed limit/stop sign
    1. Authorizes a resident of a street or neighborhood association to request the speed limit to be lowered or stop signs to be installed at an intersection.
    2. Requires a petition signed by at least 51% of residents. HB 107 is being reviewed by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. OBF provided proponent testimony on May 12.
    http://www.ohiohouse.gov/committee/transportation-and-infrastructure

You can quickly contact your legislators to ask them to support these bills by going to:

http://bikeleague.org/TakeAction?vvsrc=%2fCampaigns%2f40768%2fRespond

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