Prominent Democrats ask Governor Nixon to support Tour of Missouri

According to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article, a group of prominent Missouri Democrats has sent a letter asking Governor Nixon to support the Tour of Missouri in 2010:

Today, the Tour released a letter signed by seven Missouri Democratic lawmakers asking Gov. Jay Nixon — who hasn’t been a big supporter of the Tour — to back continued state funding for the race.

Democrats who signed the letter include minority leaders of the House and Senate, Rep. Paul LeVota and Sen. Victor Callahan, both of the Kansas City area.

Said the letter:

Today, we respectfully offer to you our support for funding the 2010 Tour of Missouri.

With a complete realization of the continued recession that our state is facing, we believe that a 14-to-1 return on the state’s $1.5 million commitment to the Tour of Missouri is a wise investment, especially during these difficult economic times.

The last two years, the Tour of Missouri brought in nearly $60 million in tourism dollars throughout the state. In 2007 and 2008 combined, an estimated 802,000 people saw the race. Another 22 million watched the event on television and viewers in 150 countries viewed live streaming coverage of the event via the Internet.

We will continue to work closely with you and our legislative colleagues in ensuring that we are making smart financial decisions for the families of Missouri. We believe that continuing to fund the Tour of Missouri is a wise investment for communities and tourism across our state.
Other signers of the letter were state representatives Jason Grill, Jamilah Nasheed, Tom McDonald, Chris Carter and Michele Kratky.

The significance of this letter is simply that the Tour of Missouri has broad, bi-partisan support, from leaders and members of both parties and from big cities, suburban areas, small towns, and rural areas.

Missouri has two million bicyclists--who recognize that even if they themselves never race and have no particular interest in bicycle racing, the Tour is good for Missouri and good for bicycling in Missouri.

The decision to continue or not continue the Tour of Missouri for 2010 will most likely be made by the end of the year--so I encourage you to continue calling and emailing Governor Nixon's office:

Call: 573-751-3222
Ask: Governor Nixon, will you support the 2010 Tour of Missouri **and** will you support bicycle friendly policies for the Missouri, including Complete Streets and funding for bicycling & pedestrian facilities in any future MoDOT funding?