BEST executive director Rob Zako testified to the Oregon Transportation Commission, urging them to direct the flexible portion of Oregon’s share of the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act away from highways and towards active transportation, slowing climate change, and local transportation needs.
As we reported previously, BEST is working with transportation leaders across the state to urge the Oregon Transportation Commission (OTC) to invest more of the flexible portion of Oregon’s share of federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) funding in active transportation, slowing climate change, and local transportation needs.
Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) staff are proposing four scenarios for how the state could invest the flexible federal funds.
State Rep. Khanh Pham (D-Portland), joined by BEST and other transportation leaders, are advocating for a Scenario 2B: Oregon’s Values, a variation on Scenario 2, to invest in active transportation, slowing climate change, and local transportation needs.
BEST executive director Rob Zako testified to the OTC on March 10: “I urge you to allocate the bulk of discretionary IIJA funding to needs that cannot be funded from the State Highway Fund. I urge you to support Scenario 2B.” (See a written version of his comments below.)
Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis and Lane Transit District Board President Caitlin Vargas also testified to the OTC.
The OTC is expected to make a final decision on how to allocate the discretionary funding at their meeting on March 30.
- Just 7 days left to tell ODOT how to spend $400 million in federal flexible funding (ODOT, 2/22/22)
- Federal funding debate gets louder as decision approaches (BikePortland, 2/28/22)
- MEETING (OTC, 3/10/22)
- Oregon Transportation Commission Preliminarily Prioritizes Highway Preservation, Safety, and Mobility Options in Discussion About Investing Federal Funding (ODOT, 3/11/22)
- $412 million in federal funding shouldn’t focus on freeways, transportation commission says (BikePortland, 3/14/22)
- Oregon panel: exclude highway projects from federal spending (Portland Tribune, 3/14/22)