Friday, November 07, 2008

Cut Sustainability and Pedestrian/Bicycle Programs?

"Councilman Bill Green complained that Nutter was looking in the wrong places for savings, maintaining staffers to work on sustainability and bike programs while cutting fire services and library branches." Philadelphia Daily News, November 7, 2008

Let the budget cut wars begin. Councilman Green would be pennywise and pound foolish to argue that eliminating pedestrian/bicycle and sustainability positions and programs would be better for Philadelphia. The costs of the City’s current Sustainability and Pedestrian/Bicycle programs and positions are small compared to the funding and saved lives they have the potential to bring to Philadelphia. They are the City's best chance to make itself more sustainable and livable for all of its residents, they will bring in more revenue from federal and state energy efficiency and "active" transportation programs that up to now Philadelphia has not taken advantage of, and they are the only way the City will ever make its streets and intersections safer and cut down on bicycle and pedestrian traffic deaths.

No one is in favor of cutting fire services or library branches, but cutting the Mayor Nutter’s nascent effort to transform Philadelphia into a sustainable and livable city at the knees won't save much money, won't make the City's streets safer, will doom the City’s chances of getting new federal or state funding, and will undoubtedly eliminate any chance of Philadelphia making any headway towards becoming the “greenest city in America.”


Anonymous said...

That is simply crazy. Bike programs and sustainability programs should be advocated for and given priority, especially in big cities with large carbon footprints. We need to encourage people to get out of their cars and walk or bike, not stay in them.