Tag Archive for tax rebates

Tax rebate for carfree households vetoed, Ballona Creek path closure, and cops claim quiet street too dangerous for bikes

More climate arson courtesy of Gavin Newsom’s veto pen.

Or pocket veto, anyway.

The California governor drove the final stake through what once was a very good bill, which in its original form would have paid Californians five grand a year not to own a car.

State Senator Anthony Portantino’s SB 457 was watered down as it made its way through the legislative process, until the final form passed by the legislature provided just $1000 for carless households.

Meaning if one person took the bus or rode a bike, while their partner drove, they’d get nothing.

But apparently, even that was too much for Newsom, who returned the bill unsigned.

Newsom’s veto message says he wasn’t signing the bill because it created a nearly $1 billion unfunded obligation each year, despite California’s record budget surplus.

Then again, he could have covered the entire thing by just moving a billion from Caltrans $20 billion budget.

Photo by Kevin Malik from Pexels.

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Looks like you’ll have to negotiate the streets through Culver City for the next week.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up.

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No bias here.

Tragic news from Houston, where an eight-year old boy was killed while riding his bike near his home on Monday.

Then the local cops added insult to literal injury, claiming the street wasn’t safe for someone on a bike. Or on foot, for that matter.

But as this photo makes clear, if this one isn’t, what street is?

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Cycling Tips attempts to break the 58-year old, 142-mile record for cycling between Derry and Dublin, Ireland.

And manages to shatter it by over an hour.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

A Montana man says he’s not a fan of bike lanes, suggesting they increase risk for riders while providing a false sense of comfort. Although the problems he points out still exist with or without them.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A Colorado man bolted from the local courthouse after a judge ordered him taken into custody on felony charges, before making his escape by bicycle; no word on whether it was his bike.

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Local

Los Angeles Council President Nury Martinez wants the city to commit to building 100 miles of bus lanes every year, which can be shared by people on bicycles. Although even better would be committing to building 100 miles of bus lanes and bike lanes every year.

Caltrans will tear down a 63-year old pedestrian bridge over the 101 Freeway in Encino this weekend because it doesn’t offer enough vertical clearance for oversized vehicles; the agency pinky swears to develop even better freeway crossings for bike riders and pedestrians, though, after local residents vetoed plans for a replacement bridge.

Los Angeles is finally making plans to fix San Vicente Blvd between Olympic Blvd and La Brea Ave, reducing the number of lanes on the up to ten-lane residential street, while improving walkways and installing parking protected bike lanes.

ActiveSGV is teaming with the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments to introduce an 840-bike, subscription-based bikeshare system.

Sad news from Long Beach, where an e-scooter rider was killed near Downtown Tuesday morning, after allegedly running a red light at Seventh Street and Chestnut Ave.

A man on a bicycle suffered undisclosed injuries when he was run down by a hit-and-run driver in Pomona Tuesday night.

 

State 

Carlsbad is taking action to improve bicycle safety after declaring a state of emergency last month, including accelerating plans to repave and restripe streets to create space for walkers and bicyclists, while conducting a citywide review of speed limits. Meanwhile, the city will remove a traffic lane from the Coast Highway, reducing it to a single southbound lane to make room for a two-way buffered bike lane.

A reporting team from The New York Times goes for an autonomous car ride through the streets of San Francisco, describing the self-driving vehicle as the overly cautious opposite of the famous car chase from Bullitt. And ended up walking when the car mistakenly detected a possible crash, and refused to budge.

Sad news from Sausalito, where a man died several days after he was injured in a collision with an ebike rider on a local trail.

 

National

The Wall Street Journal says the hottest new car isn’t a car, it’s an ebike. And for once, the story isn’t hidden behind their draconian paywall.

Wired makes their picks for the best bike computers, ranging from $45 to $750.

Nebraska bike riders are planning protests to fight the removal of Omaha’s first and only protected bike lane, after the city concluded it would be incompatible with a planned streetcar.

Three people suffered “significant but non-life-threatening injuries” when they were struck by a hit-and-run driver as they were leaving a Houston Astros game in a pedicab.

A 20-year old Texarkana, Texas man faces a manslaughter charge for the collateral damage death of a bike rider; he was driving nearly twice the 45 mph speed limit when he crashed into pickup and continued on to hit the man on his bicycle.

Chicago is fighting a long history of drag racing in a wetlands park by ticketing drivers who park in the bike lanes.

A Syracuse NY man completed a 16,600-mile ride through each state capitol, along with Washington DC, in a single year — while donating blood eight times along the way.

DC is following the lead of New York to become just the second US city to ban right turns on red, as advocates hope it marks the beginning of a nationwide trend.

 

International

Get ready for your next public meeting with a rousing round of SIM NIMBY, the utterly useless SIM game that doesn’t allow you to build anything, anywhere.

A London borough council is calling for a ban on “illegal and dangerous” ebike chargers, in the wake of a series of recent fires; the targeted chargers aren’t designed for use with ebike lithium-ion batteries.

A 45-year old Scottish woman who holds the record for bicycling across the UK from Lands End to John O’Groats suffered a broken pelvis when she was struck by a hit-and-run driver pulling farm equipment.

An Indian woman created her own bicycle child’s seat using a kid’s plastic chair attached over the rear wheel.

You can’t legally ride handsfree in Australia. Or while gargling in Arizona, or in a Los Angeles swimming pool.

 

Competitive Cycling

The Vatican — yes, that tiny Roman Catholic enclave in Rome, Italy — sent a one-man cycling team to last weekend’s world road cycling championship; despite the heavenly connection, 40-year old Rien Schuurhuis did not win. Or finish, for that matter.

Angry Mathieu van der Poel fans are posting scathing reviews for a Sydney, Australia hotel, after the Dutch cyclist was convicted of chasing a group of teenage girls who repeatedly knocked on his room and ran while he was trying to sleep before competing in the Worlds.

New Zealand’s Niamh Fisher-Black had to pay her own way to the Worlds — and won the first-ever U-23 women’s title anyway.

A writer for Road.cc pens a love letter to ‘cross, calling it cycling’s silliest discipline.

 

Finally…

Why leave your furry friends at home, when you can pack them into your new throttle-controlled ebike? More proof you can carry anything on a bike — even if it’s not yours.

And your next touring bike could come complete with a built-in table, chair and bed.

No, really.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Contact LA city council to support Healthy Streets LA, and CA bill would give up to $5,000 tax credit for carfree households

Streets For All is asking everyone to support the Healthy Streets LA ballot proposal now that it’s before the Los Angeles City Council.

The council has 20 days to decide whether to adopt the proposal as written or place it on the ballot for the 2024 election.

Or they could adopt their own ordinance, which could include similar language to the Healthy Streets LA ballot proposal, but could be change at any time, for any reason, unlike the the ballot measure which would require a vote of the people to modify or repeal.

Your support matters, especially since some advocates have come out against it.

WE NEED YOU:
Tell City Council to adopt Healthy Streets LA!

Last month, we turned in more than 100,000 signatures from residents in every single council district in Los Angeles — the people demanded safer streets, protected bike lanes, and dedicated bus lanes. Yesterday, the City Clerk certified our petition.

Now, it goes to City Council. The City Council has 20 days to decide to adopt our measure as an ordinance, or send it to the ballot to let the voters decide. We already know what voters want. That’s why we need your help to get the city council to adopt us as an ordinance within the next two weeks.

MAKE PUBLIC COMMENT ON THE COUNCIL FILE

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Good news for carfree households.

Let’s hope this one passes.

It could do as much as anything to help get people out of their cars.

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This is who we share the road with.

A New Hampshire truck driver plowed head-on into a group of motorcyclists, killing seven people; a jury let him walk without a day behind bars, though he may be deported to his native Ukraine. Just in case you wondered why people keep dying on our streets. And my apologies to whoever sent this to me; I’m afraid I lost track of it over the weekend.

A Pennsylvania man faces charges after plowing through a crowd gathered to raise funds for victims of a deadly house fire, killing one person and injuring 17, including four critically; he then ran down his own mother with his car and beat her to death with a hammer.

A driver plowed into an Arlington, Virginia pub, injuring 15 people, two critically; people inside described the crash as being like a bomb going off.

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Too many Angelenos learn about our deadly streets the hard way.

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Evidently, Portland drivers can figure out what San Diego drivers couldn’t.

Or didn’t want to.

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Not Just Bikes considers the bakfiets as a car. replacement.

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French illustrator Jean-Jacques Sempé created over one hundred covers for The New Yorker, including many bicycling themed illustrations.

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If anyone has me on their Secret Santa list, I’ll gladly settle for a copy of this painting.

Or the original, even.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

This is what a punishment pass looks like.

No bias here. A Louisville KY TV station reports, apparently seriously, that a salmon cyclist crashed her bike into the front of a police patrol car, rather than the cops hitting her with their car. That’s like saying “Please accept my apologies for hitting your fist with my nose.”

Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

Police in Fort Worth, Texas are looking for a bike-riding man who rode out of the darkness to slash a man’s arm with a machete.

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Local

Los Angeles Times readers address the recent article about the Healthy Streets LA initiative qualifying for the ballot with surprisingly less vitriol than expected, though one insisted on trotting out the old “this is not Amsterdam” bromide, combined with the myth that its too hot to ride to work in a suit here. Especially since so many Angelenos have ditched their suits post pandemic.

The Times editorial department says you’ll soon have the chance to vote for safer streets.

Treehugger says the high-speed Windsor Hills crash that killed six victims, including a pregnant mother just two weeks from full term, has reignited debate about installing speed limiters in cars.

 

State 

California governor Gaven Newsom has named former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to serve as the state’s first Infrastructure Advisor to identify priority projects and maximize access to federal dollars.

A memorial crowdfunding campaign has raised over $110,000 for the family of Christine Hawk Embree, the 35-year old Carlsbad mother killed by a driver while riding an ebike with her 16-month old daughter; at last check, the fund stood at more than $119,000.

Eight San Diego men set a new team record for riding across the US in five days, two hours and 47 minutes.

Police in Contra Costa County arrested a hit-and-run driver who allegedly killed a 57-year old bike rider, before crashing head-on into another car minutes later.

A new 600-mile hiking and mountain biking trail could help revive dying towns in the Sierras.

 

National

Bike shops couldn’t keep up during the pandemic bike boom, and ended up ordering bikes that weren’t delivered until the after the boom crested; now they’re overflowing with bikes they can’t sell. For some reason, this story wasn’t blocked by the Wall Street Journal’s paywall, though your results may vary. 

Tech Radar offers a ten point checklist on how to safely secure your bike. And adds advice to never buy cheap secondhand bikes from shady sellers.

A Flagstaff, Arizona woman rode her mountain bike 2,700 miles on off-road trails in 51 days — despite being blind.

There is no lower form of human scum than someone who could leave a bike-riding 6-year old Las Vegas boy to die in the street.

That’s more like it. A Beaumont, Texas driver got 12 and a half years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a bike rider; his sentence was extended as a repeat offender.

A Wisconsin family brings 17 extra bikes with them to ensure every child can take part in the Green Bay Packer’s tradition of riding borrowed kids bikes to practice.

Christian singer Amy Grant has postponed more concert dates in September and October, as she continues to recover at her Nashville home from being knocked cold falling off her bike.

No, New York City will not be banning cars anytime in the foreseeable future.

The gunman who killed a security guard on the set of Law & Order: Organized Crime in Brooklyn last month apparently stalked the victim using a bicycle.

Someone tossed a heavy bikeshare bike onto the tracks in front of a New York subway train, with predictable results.

This is the cost of traffic violence. Friends remember a Virginia woman who was killed by a teenaged drunk driver while riding with a friend at 7:30 am; the other woman remains hospitalized in critical condition.

President Biden took another bike ride with his family while on vacation in South Carolina. And didn’t fall off this time.

A Miami man carries his 75-pound, sunglass-wearing golden doodle on his back as he rides around his neighborhood.

Kindhearted Florida duputies bought a 13-year old boy “the monster of all bikes” after learning he was depressed over the theft of his bike and the death of his father.

 

International

Road.cc reviews the new book Two Wheels Good – The History and Mystery of the Bicycle, giving it four out of five stars. The website also lists a half-dozen bike upgrades you don’t really need, from high-end gruppos to disc brakes and tubeless tires.

Kindhearted Ottawa, Canada cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a young kid after the one he received in a charity giveaway was stolen.

Someone may have stolen $3,300 from a bike rider in Trinidad after he was killed in a collision.

A British luxury lifestyle magazine recommends the best places for a biking vacation this fall. And no, nowhere in the US made the cut.

They get it. Officials in Camden, England say new bike lanes will benefit both bike riders and local businesses.

A 34-year old Edinburgh man with terminal motor neurone disease completed a mountainous, 20 hour, 265-mile fundraising ride; in the four years since his diagnosis, he’s raised the equivalent of $181,000 to fight the disease, with another $60,000 pledged for this ride.

Life is cheap in the UK, where a truck driver got just seven months behind bars for killing a 71-year old man riding a bicycle; he played the universal Get Out Of Jail Free card, saying he just didn’t see the victim.

Would you like fries with that? A new documentary tells the story of a Yugoslavian man who ate an entire bicycle in three days. No, really. 

Over 100 bicyclists turned out to mark Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, aka the 75th anniversary of Indian independence.

Nice story from Gabon, where a teacher got tired of watching her students walk for miles to get to school, so she started a company making bamboo bicycles; she already has over 5,000 orders.

You’ve got to be kidding. The new Hermes bicycle sold out in mainland China, despite a price tag over $24,000. Demonstrating that a number of wealthy Chinese have more yuan than sense.

 

Competitive Cycling

Seventy-one-year old Rick Taggart qualified for the US Nationals for his age bracket, despite a high-speed crash in the final mile of a 76-mile race that left him with a broken collarbone; he somehow managed to finish the race anyway.

Pez Cycling News takes a look at seven of the world’s “most challenging, weirdest bike races.”

 

Finally…

That feeling when your bike breaks during a 1,000-mile audax, so you ride into the nearest town, buy a new frame and build up a new one to finish the ride. We may have to deal with LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about getting kicked in the head by a deer doing a high jump. 

And evidently, Napoleon was one of us, too.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

NHTSA considers limiting speeds on new cars, California considers $2,500 tax credit for non-car owners, and Ford finally gets it

It’s Election Day in California. 

If you live in the state, get out and bike the vote if you haven’t already. 

Seriously, what are you waiting for?

Photo by Element5 Digital from Pexels.

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Yes, please.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, aka NHTSA, asked if Americans would accept GPS-based speed limiters that would prevent drivers of new cars from exceeding the speed limit, except in an emergency.

A modern take on mechanical speed governors, the electronic system, which is taking effect in the European Union this year, would slowly reduce deaths and injuries due to speeding as older cars are phased out.

It would also eliminate a leading cause of police traffic stops, reducing racial profiling while improving safety for both police and the vehicle occupants, especially people of color.

Although it’s questionable how well it would be received here in the US, where too many drivers consider speeding their God-given right. And it would drive an inevitable black market industry to disable them.

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Great idea.

Streets For All is working with State Senator Anthony Portantino to sponsor SB 457, which would provide a $2,500 tax rebate for any adults that who don’t own a car.

The goal is to reward people making the socially conscious choice not to drive, while providing a financial incentive for people to go carfree.

Especially in light of a new study shows that the lifetime cost of owning an average small car comes to $689,000, of which society pays $275,000, while owning a Mercedes SUV carries a lifetime burden of over a million dollars.

Which is about as good an argument as you can make for passing a rebate to give up your car for good.

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On further reflection, even Ford gets that their ad was despicable.

Or at least, when social media is against them.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bike just keeps on going.

No bias here. A writer for City Watch blames road diets for the failure of Vision Zero in Los Angeles, as well as increasing traffic congestion and rising road rage, and all the other ills on our streets. Maybe someone should remind her that most road diets planned for Los Angeles never happened, after cowardly councilmembers cancelled them. 

An 18-year old Georgia woman faces an attempted murder charge after intentionally running down a woman she knew as the victim was riding her bicycle.

Also in Georgia, a man faces charges for intentionally running down a 15-year old boy on a bike with his ATV, after the boy tossed a banana peel on the side of the road next to the man’s property.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A Singapore delivery rider was sentenced to three days in jail for crashing his speeding ebike into a 71-year old man, breaking his wrist.

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Local

The Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee will hold its monthly virtual meeting starting at 6:30 this evening.

The one-woman play California Coast Classic currently being staged in North Hollywood comedically retells the author’s experience with the annual ride from San Fransisco to Malibu to benefit the Arthritis Foundation.

 

State 

About damn time. Caltrans has received $35 million in funding from the California Transportation Commission to upgrade traffic lights and install Class II painted bike lanes along a 20 mile stretch of PCH in Orange County.

San Francisco is planning a half million dollar pilot program to give free ebikes to 35 delivery drivers to get them out of their cars and cut their carbon footprint.

Maybe he really is lucky. The San Francisco Warriors fan hosted the nine-year old fan whose lucky lowrider bike was stolen for game two of the NBA championship. And won the game.

Yosemite’s bikeshare system gives you up to two hours to visit park attractions by bike, for free.

 

National

People for Bikes suggests three keys to rapidly building out extensive bike networks fast, from getting everyone to the table, to not waiting for policy to catch up.

Condé Nast Traveler talks with the plus-sized founders of All Bodies on Bikes, which works to make cycling more size-inclusive, and eliminate anti-fat bias in society as a whole.

Austin, Texas has invested $23.3 million in new bike infrastructure since 2016, but still has a long way to go to make the city safe enough to encourage people to use bicycles as their primary form of transportation.

Chicago will give away 5,000 bicycles to city resident this year, along with helmets, locks and beginner’s bicycling classes.

Yesterday we mentioned an Indianapolis hit-and-run victim who told police the license number of the car that hit her before she died; now it turns out she was intentionally run down by her ex-boyfriend as she rode her bike, who had been stalking her and their daughter.

Bicyclists in Maine could soon see a $160 million offroad bike trail connecting all of the states 25 largest cities. “Largest” being a relative term, with Brewer checking in at the 25th spot with just 9026 residents.

The jealous girlfriend who allegedly killed gravel cycling star Moriah “Mo” Wilson was reportedly last seen at the Newark, New Jersey airport three weeks ago, the day after Austin, Texas authorities issued a warrant for her arrest.

DC’s 150 miles of bike lanes still leaves significant gaps in the network, leaving riders on their own to confront “eight lanes of death.”

 

International

Milan, Italy announced plans to build 466 miles of protected bike lanes to create one of Europe’s largest and most comprehensive bike networks, with a concentric spoke and hub system connecting every part of the city.

A Ghanian website looks at the the very cool, but very strange wooden bicycles made by a local artist.

Australia’s new prime minister is one of us, taking a diplomatic ride on bamboo bikes with the Indonesian president on a state visit to West Java.

 

Competitive Cycling

French pro Clara Copponi survived a mass crash less than a thousand feet before the finish to win the first stage of the women’s Tour of Britain; the race was delayed over an hour after a driver crashed into a motorcycle cop leading the race.

No bias here. British tabloids went on the attack after a pair of trans women won a gender inclusive fixed-gear crit, with a young mother finishing third; the race was open to “trans men and women whose physical performance aligns most closely with cis-women.”

Scary moment in the Vuelta a Colombia, when stage three winner Luis Carlos Chia crashed into his own wife, who was taking photos of the race, seconds after crossing the finish line.

Bicycling profiles transgender women’s cyclist Molly Cameron, who has faced that same bias herself. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

America’s last remaining Tour de France winner announced he’s suffering from Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia, a slow-progressing and treatable form of blood cancer; Greg LeMond says he hopes to be in remission in a few months.

 

Finally…

Your next bike could have built-in Bluetooth and a wireless 4G connection. Do your pedaling on the road, not under your desk.

And that feeling when your bike gets charged by a zebra.

No, right here in California.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

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