It's election season again, and SVBC has been working with our local teams to prepare questions for candidates running for office in our area. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, SVBC cannot and does not endorse any candidate, but we can ask them for their thoughts on promoting the bike for everyday use and share the answers.
Our San Mateo County Committee reached out to candidates running for city, county, and state offices. The responses will be published as they are received.
From Bernardo Huerta, candidate for East Palo Alto City Council:
1. Where do you see bikes fitting into the overall transportation plan?
The City of East Palo Alto has started updating its General Plan. In it is the Circulation Element to be updated also. It should include more mention of pedestrian and bicycle uses to lead the City's work on pedestrian and bicycle access, availability, safety, paths, storage, etc.
2. If elected, what are three things that you would do to improve cycling opportunities for your constituents?
Of course lead the updating of the Circulation Element. Work on grants with pedestrian and bicycles issues. Work on pedestrian and bicycle safety.
3. What have you done or worked on in the past that shows your record of being involved in bicycle, active transportation, or road/trail improvement campaigns?
I have been on the East Palo Alto Public Works & Transportation Commission since 2001 listing and working on these issues. Been on the Community Based Transportation Plan committee since 2003. Worked to get three Safe Routes to School funding to the City from both State and Federal. As Planning Commissioner voted to pass new building regulations for pedestrian and bicycle similar to the County of Santa Clara's regulations in 2010. As PW&TC Chair passed, 10/17/2012, Complete Streets Policy that deals with City developments and bicycle issues, On the Planning Commission's Ad Hoc Bicycle Committee since 2011 working on funding, bicycle relations, and US101 Pedestrian Overcrossing. Working on US101 University Overcrossing widening in PW&TC.
4. With dedicated funding for cycling projects under fire on the regional, state, and federal level, what would you do to keep those dollars flowing?
Many State pedestrian and bicycle mandates are unfunded, ask representatives to fund these programs. Use General fund or Capital Improvement funds. Apply for pedestrian and bicycle planning grants. The City of East Palo Alto has a $1,000,000 settlement with Facebook campus to use along University, use these fund competently and entirely,and/or use some as leveraging new grants.