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Update and Next Action to Save TE Funding

The Action    July 18,2003

Ask Members of the Appropriations Committee to vote to strike Sec. 114 of the FY 2004 Transportation Treasury Appropriations Bill that defunds Transportation Enhancements Activities.

The Update

As we all know, the Transportation & Treasury Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee passed legislation for FY 2004 that eliminates all funding for Transportation Enhancements (TE).  This action occurred on Friday, July 11th.  That bill is headed for "mark-up" by the full Appropriations Committee and a vote is expected late Monday afternoon, July 21.  Although this timing could slip, it is our latest and best information.

At the Committee mark-up, we expect that an amendment will be offered to strike Sec. 114 - the offending provision that eliminates TE funding.  Now that we have a clearer idea about process and timing, those of us whose Representatives sit on the Appropriations Committee can address a specific question to them: "Will you (please) vote to strike Sec. 114 of the Transportation Treasury Appropriations Bill?"   That is the question.  It will take courage to put it directly to your Congressional Representative and push for an answer.  But now is the time to get firm commitments.  Bless those of you who are willing to hang tough.  Remember what Mr. Franklin said about "hanging?"  "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."

It is always possible that a substitute bill might be offered on Monday and Sec. 114 will have a different number.  Do not be dissuaded; your member of Congress will know what section of any bill variant refers to Enhancements. 

As background information I have reattached RTC president Keith Laughlin's letter to the Appropriations Committee along with a membership list.

After you have spoken with your Congressional office, please provide feedback to RTC's Manager of Trails Advocacy, Ken Rosenfeld, at  We are in an information loop with our allies in Congress, and they are depending upon all of us for the recognizance that will guide their strategy.  Your feedback will directly assist these efforts.

Let's go, and thank you.
Marianne Fowler
Sr. Vice President of Programs
Co-Chair, Transportation Enhancements Coalition

<<Young-Obey.Letter.doc>> <<HOUSE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS.doc>>


  Letter to Appropriations Committee and committee members





A U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee voted on Friday, July 11, to zero out all funding for the Transportation Enhancements (TE) program for the fiscal year beginning October 1. The TE program is the largest federal source of funding in support of trails, walking and bicycling. We cannot allow this program to be eliminated.


Rails-to-Trails Conservancy - and advocates like you - helped establish the TE program in 1991 and we will fight to oppose this unfounded Congressional action in the full House Appropriations Committee and on the floor of the U.S. House, if necessary. RTC President Keith Laughlin has written a letter to Congress speaking out against this anti-trail measure and RTC staff and our partners are generating support in Congress and raising awareness across the country.


We need your help.  Members of the U.S. House of Representatives need to hear how important this program is to communities across the country. Call your Representative today to:

  1. Express your shock that the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and Treasury voted to eliminate Transportation Enhancements.
  2. Make your voice heard on the importance of TE funds in your district (go to for a list of TE-funded projects in your area).
  3. Explain that Transportation Enhancements should not be sacrificed while highway funding continues to increase by billions of dollars.
  4. Urge your Representative to do everything possible to save the Transportation Enhancements program. 

To contact your Representative, call the general switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask to be transferred to their office. Or, locate their direct phone number at


If you do not know who your Representative is, click here and enter your zip code under Find Your Representative:


For background information and to read RTC President Keith Laughlin's letter to Congress, go to:


Keep us informed! Please e-mail RTC Advocacy Manager Ken Rosenfeld at and tell him which Congressional office you contacted and what you learned.


To support RTC:


Please forward a copy of this Action Alert to others who are interested in saving funding for trails!  


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