Four U.S. Senators introduce bipartisan act to promote better transportation measurement, responsiveness | Sen Tammy Baldwin

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U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Ed Markey, (D-MA) and Joni Ernst (R-IA) today introduced bipartisan legislation to improve transportation access and help break down barriers for workers and families getting to jobs, local businesses and health care services. The Connecting Opportunities through Mobility Metrics and Unlocking Transportation Efficiencies (COMMUTE) Act provides data to states and local governments to measure accessibility to local businesses and important destinations, and inform investments in transportation systems.

“In Wisconsin and across the country, inadequate or unaffordable transportation options can be a significant barrier to employment and hold potential workers back from joining the workforce and helping grow our economy,” said Senator Baldwin. “At the same time, employers, particularly those located just outside metro areas and in rural communities, may be missing out on potential workers. This bipartisan legislation is about investing in better and more efficient transportation so workers and families can get to job hubs, health care services and other important destinations, and keep our Made in Wisconsin economy moving forward.”

MoBikeFed comment: This bill is likely to be one of the top national priorities a the 2019 National Bike Summit. The bill is at the start of its legislative process and is likely to be included in a future Transportation Bill or funding reauthorization.

Introducing it now with high-profile, bi-partisan sponsorship helps position the idea well for inclusion in these bills over the next few years.

The approach is strongly supported by bicycle and pedestrian advocacy groups because we know that accurate measurement of transportation needs--especially when it goes all the way down to the neighborhood level--invariably shows that bicycling and walking are underserved and have high demand that is not yet met.

So initiatives like this help build crucial support for better, safer bicycling and walking infrastructure across an entire city, metro area, or region.