Press Release: Bicycle Day at the Capitol in Jefferson City February 26th (2/2008)

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact information:
Dr. Brent Hugh
Executive Director
Missouri Bicycle Federation
876-695-6736
director@MoBikeFed.org

Bicycle Day at the Capitol in Jefferson City February 26th

Awards, Complete Streets legislation, and Levi Leipheimer's 2007 Tour of Missouri bicycle on display

The Missouri Bicycle Federation's Bicycle Day at the Capitol is Tuesday, February 26th in Jefferson City.

Dozens of Missouri bicyclists, walkers, runners, and trail users will descend on the capitol to talk with their legislators, promote legislations to make our communities safer and more inviting for walking and bicycling, and present awards to state officials.

Citizens will be speaking in support of the Safe Streets bill (HB2205) and the Complete Streets bill (HB2206), both sponsored by Representative Mike Sutherland.

Bicycle Day Highlights:

* Awards presentations at 10:30 and 10:45 in the Senate Lounge

* Levi Leipheimer's bicycle on display in the 3rd floor rotunda

* Antique bicycle display in the 3rd floor rotunda

Awards will be presented to Governor Matt Blunt, Lt. Governor Peter D. Kinder, Attorney General Jay Nixon, Department of Natural Resources Director Doyle Childers, Speaker Rod Jetton, Representative Mike Sutherland, Representative Shannon Cooper, Representative J.C. Kuessner, Representative T.D. El Amin, Senator Charlie Shields, Senator Bill Stouffer, Senator Joan Bray, Senator Kevin Engler, and Senator Wayne Goode (retired).

Complete awards text is below.

Trek Bicycle will display the bicycle ridden by American cyclist Levi Leipheimer when he rode in the 2007 Tour of Missouri.

Leipheimer is a "rock star" of the international bicycle racing world. He rode with Lance Armstrong's team for several of Armstrong's Tour de France wins, has 3 top-ten Tour de France finished to his credit, won the time trial of the 2007 Tour of Missouri, and took top honors in the 2007 Tour of California.

The antique bicycle display is courtesy James Allen of Springfield. Allen has ridden and displayed his rare and valuable bicycles across the U.S.

Award texts:

Governor Matt Blunt
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Governor Matt Blunt played a key role in bringing the Tour of Missouri to the state. The Tour is largest bicycle event in Missouri history and bringing this annual multi-day bicycle tour to the state is the bicycling world's equivalent of landing a new major pro sports team.

Governor Blunt's unwavering support was vital in the successful effort to "Complete the Katy Trail" by connecting it to the Kansas City area. As soon as the opportunity arose, Governor Blunt was out in front with his support for including the Katy Trail Connection as part of the Taum Sauk settlement talks. The settlement, which was recently approved, includes an agreement to build the trail within Ameren's right-of-way and $18 million to actually build the trail.

Lt. Governor Peter D. Kinder
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Lt. Governor Peter D. Kinder has led the effort to organize and promote the Tour of Missouri, and the Lt. Governor and his office must take much of the credit for the success of the 2007 Tour and the commitment to make it an ongoing annual event. The Tour is largest bicycle event in Missouri history and bringing this annual multi-day bicycle tour to the state is the bicycling world's equivalent of landing a new major pro sports team.

In traveling the state to promote the Tour, Lt. Governor Kinder has become the #1 supporter of bicycling in Missouri, speaking about the Tour and the importance of bicycling in Missouri to key individuals, decision makers and groups totaling well into the thousands.

Attorney General Jay Nixon
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Attorney General Jay Nixon has been a supporter of the Katy Trail since its creation, when he was a member of the Missouri Senate. Attorney General Nixon's support of the Katy Trail was vital in the successful effort to complete an agreement with AmerenUE to "Complete the Katy Trail" by connecting it to the Kansas City area.

Attorney General Nixon has played a leading role in the effort to preserve the Boonville MKT Bridge and make it a part of the Katy Trail. The Attorney General has been one of the few statewide leaders who has had the foresight to understand that changing the legal agreements that created the Katy Trail in order to remove the Boonville Bridge is a serious step that could endanger the legal status of 160 miles of the Katy Trail.

Department of Natural Resources Director Doyle Childers
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Doyle Childers, Director of the Department of Natural Resources, has played a key role in the effort to "Complete the Katy Trail". Work to complete the final 11 miles on the eastern end of the trail is nearly complete near St. Charles. A recently opened river bridge connects Hermann with the Katy Trail. The Missouri State Parks Foundation, which works closely with DNR, has recently completed the final fund raising needed to create a trail connection from Jefferson City to the Katy Trail. And Director Childers' tireless support for the Katy Trail Connection to Kansas City has resulted in an agreement with AmerenUE to provide both the right-of-way and $18 million to build the trail.

Speaker Rod Jetton
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Representative Rod Jetton, Speaker of the House, has been a friend of bicycling, walking, and trails throughout his tenure in the House of Representatives. Speaker Jetton has walked across a good portion of the state, bicycled the entire Katy Trail, walked across the Boonville Bridge, and taken colleagues on Katy Trail rides. Speaker Jetton's support was vital in passing the Bicycle Safety Bill of 2005, the most important bicycle-related legislation to pass in the past 10 years.

Representative Mike Sutherland
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Representative Mike Sutherland has been the key supporter of bicycling in the Missouri House the past few years.

Representative Sutherland sponsored the Bicycle Safety Bill of 2005, the most important bicycle-safety legislation in the past 10 years in Missouri, and the Trails in Parks Bill of 2007, which will allow closer cooperation between nonprofit groups and the Department of Natural Resources to build trails and other needed facilities in state parks.

Representative Sutherland doesn't just talk the talk, he "rides the ride". He is an avid cyclist who rides every chance he gets in both rides and mountain bike races.

Representative Shannon Cooper
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Representative Shannon Cooper is one of the few House members to have ridden the entire length of the Katy Trail, which begins in his district. Representative Cooper has been a strong supporter of the Katy Trail and the effort to "Complete the Katy Trail" by connecting it to Kansas City. He was a co-sponsor and key supporter of the Bicycle Safety Bill of 2005.

Representative J.C. Kuessner
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Representative J. C. Kuessner has been an active supporter of bicycle and pedestrian issues as a member of the House Transportation Committee. Representative Kuessner has been a key supporter of the coast-to-coast TransAmerica Trail, which passes through his district. Promoting bicycling by encouraging improvement of the TransAmerica Trail

Representative T.D. El Amin
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Representative T.D. El Amin is an avid bicyclist and the General Assembly's designated Bicycle Commuter--visitors to Representative El Amin's office will often find his bicycle parked in the hallway. Last March Representative El Amin and his brother rode from his home in the St. Louis area to Jefferson City to rai se awareness and funds for the National Kidney Foundation.

Senator Charlie Shields
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Senator Charlie Shields, Senate Majority Leader, has provided leadership in supporting bicycle and pedestrian modes in St. Joseph. From supporting neighborhood level access for biking and walking across MoDot bridges, to retrofitting commercial corridors for non-motorized modes, Mr. Shields has been a steady voice who recognizes that people do travel in significant numbers in ways other than the automobile and that the transportation system should be inclusive of those operations.

Senator Bill Stouffer
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Senator Bill Stouffer, chair of the Transportation Committee, has worked tirelessly to improve Missouri's transportation system. Senator Stouffer has been a supporter of the Katy Trail, which passes through his district.

Senator Stouffer has played a leading role in the effort to preserve the Boonville MKT Bridge and make it a part of the Katy Trail. The effort to preserve the Boonville Bridge has has tremendous support from local residents. From the statewide perspective, removing the bridge without taking the proper legal steps could endanger the legal status of 160 miles of the Katy Trail.

Senator Joan Bray
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Senator Joan Bray has been a strong supporter of bicycling and walking. Senator Bray has sponsored or co-sponsored numerous bicycle and pedestrian-related bills and she and her staff have spent countless hours working to move them forward. Senator Bray was a co-sponsor of the Bicycle Safety Bill of 2005.

Senator Kevin Engler
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Senator Kevin Engler has been an important supporter of bicycle and pedestrian legislation throughout his terms in the House and the Senate. Senator Engler has supported the TransAmerica Trail, a coast-to-coast bicycle tourism route that goes through his district. Senator Engler has sponsored or co-sponsored several other legislative initiatives. He was the Senate Sponsor of the Bicycle Safety Bill of 2005, the most important bicycle-related legislation to pass in the past 10 years.

Senator Wayne Goode (retired)
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Senator Wayne Goode was a member of the Missouri General Assembly for 44 years. He was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 1962 and served in the Missouri Senate from 1984-2004. Senator Goode is a Missouri Bicycle Federation member and an avid bicyclist who has often spent summers bicycle touring with his wife, Jane. Senator Goode has served as President of the Board and continues to serve as a board member of TrailNet in St. Louis. Senator Goode was a key supporter of bicycle and pedestrian-related legislation and currently serves on the Missouri Bicycle Federation's Legislative Committee.

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The Missouri Bicycle Federation, founded in 1994, represents the interests of bicyclists, walkers, runners, and trail users throughout Missouri. Through its network of affiliated clubs and groups, MoBikeFed represents over 15,000 Missouri citizens. Find out more or join the federation at MoBikeFed.org


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