Farmington Valley Trails Council

Farmington Canal Heritage Trail & Farmington River Trail

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Farmington Valley Trails Council Newsletter May 2010

President’s Letter

I had the opportunity mid-March to join the Connecticut contingent at the National Bike Summit in Washington, D.C. with board member Jim Cassidy (who has a hand in this letter due to his great notes), and a host of our CT friends led by the unsinkable Mary-Ellen Thibodeau of Bike Walk Connecticut. This three day event featured a speech by Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood on March 11th at which he stated that we ¨have a full partner in Ray LaHood" – something that is quite remarkable coming from a federal transportation official. The USDOT may be starting to recognize that there are other things than cars. Google announced its new bike directions app in GoogleMaps, and the League of American Bicyclists announced a new ¨Bikes Belong" campaign. Lance Armstrong even talked to us from Hawaii. The highlight for me was the part where we put on our suits and went calling on our Congressional delegation. We had been asked by the LOB to talk about six issues: the Active Community Transportation Act of 2010; the Complete Streets Act of 2009; the Safe Routes to School Program; the Urban Revi-talization and Livable Communities Act; the Land and Water Reauthorization Act; and finally to ask them to join the Congressional Bike Caucus. Our first meeting was with Chris Murphy (D) 5th District. Nine of us crowded into the office, and while the meeting started with a staffer, Rep. Murphy shortly joined us. We ended up with him asking a few questions, and I let him know about the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail and our successes, and the initiative to build a trail along the Merritt Parkway, which he had not heard about.

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