One of the best ways to make a difference for safe streets in Provo is to vote for city council candidates who are dedicated to neighborhoods that work for pedestrians and bicyclists. All registered voters in Provo will have a chance to vote for city council candidates on November 3rd, 2015. Not sure about voting? You can find out how to register here. Find your polling place here. And, watch more in-depth candidate videos here.
Huge kuddos to the candidates who responded to our four bicycle survey questions (posted here with a bit more context). Many of the candidates were also able to make it out to October’s Provo Bicycle Committee meeting, where they introduced themselves and saw a bit of what is happening with bikes in Provo. Please check out the survey questions below and share them with your Provo neighbors and friends interested in safer streets.
City-Wide Provo City Council Candidates
Everyone that votes in Provo can vote for one of these candidates, no matter where you live.
|George Stewart||Carina Wytiaz|
|Would you be willing to sponsor or support a â€œComplete Streetsâ€ bill for Provo?||I am completely in favor of making Provo and its streetsÂ more bicycle friendly but I cannot commit to sponsor or support a bill I have not seen or reviewed. I would be willing to support the concepts you described that would be part of a *Complete Streets” policy.||I would. My understanding is that the city is already doing this even without the legislation that requires it. I believe that it makes sense to consider the needs of all types of transportation as we design our infrastructure. That being said, I will always be reasonable about supporting changes. They need to make sense but I believe that more often than not, complete streets are wise investments.|
|Would you be in favor of including active transportation (infrastructure for biking / walking) as a line item in the city budget?||I would be in favor of funding Items that would promote a more bicycle friendly Provo but not knowing what would be in an “Active Transportation” line item I cannot comment on that issue.||I am in favor of including active transportation as a line item in the city budget. That does not mean that I am in favor of increasing the budget, but I would support moving funds from other transportation line items to a line item that supports active transportation. For example, I would take a hard look at the Utility Transportation Fund to see if it makes sense to reprogram some of those dollars to a line item for active transportation.|
|If you are elected, what can Provo bicycle advocates (including the Provo Bicycle Committee, the Provo Bicycle Collective, and bicyclists across the city) do to best help you jump in and feel confident in joining the ongoing discussion about making Provo more bicycle-friendly?||As stated above I am in favor of making Provo more bicycle friendly and would be willing to join any discussion or help any group that would help achieve that goal.||I love everything that is happening in Provo. I am running to keep the momentum that we have going. I love that we have a group of people in Provo who care so passionately about making it better and I consider myself one of those people. I can’t know everything, so I depend on citizens telling me what they find important. As a city-wide candidate, my job is to represent all the people of Provo so I am committed to listening with an open mind. What will be most helpful to me is if you and the other members of the community take me up on that. Tell me what you want to see in Provo. Share your great ideas with me. Letâ€™s work together to keep things moving in the right direction.|
|Is there anything else youâ€™d like voters to know about you and your experiences or positions related to bicycling?||As I told you while attending your meeting, my complete mobility as a youth and young teenager depended on my bicycle as my Mother did not drive and my Father traveled in his work as an attorney for the Veterans Adm. I also was a bicycle newspaper carrier.||I’m committed to foresight in transportation, and that includes planning for a city that is friendly to more transportation alternatives, like bicycles. I’ve lived in different areas of the world, including in several European countries, where bicycles are more commonly used for every day errands. If we can plan now for a city that embraces bicycling through planning and commitment, it will mean better air, healthier transport, and options as we significantly grow our population.|
Keep reading to find out about district-wide races…
District 3 Provo City Council Candidates
You can vote for one of these candidates if you live in District 3 (see PDF District Map)
|Dave Knechtdaveknecht.org||Brian Smithbriansmithprovo.com|
|Would you be willing to sponsor or support a â€œComplete Streetsâ€ bill for Provo?||Considering the strong support from the TMAC, Planning Commission, City Council and the Mayor’s Administration, for the Bicycle Master Plan I thought it was a given that our engineering staff would be on board with “Complete Streets.â€Â If indeed our engineers are not looking at all elements when a street is created or re-paved, then the Council should be talking to the administration to find out why. Â If a “Complete Streets” bill turns out to be the only way to ensure that city staff looks at the “big picture,” then I would support the bill.||YES I absolutely would!â€‹|
|Would you be in favor of including active transportation (infrastructure for biking / walking) as a line item in the city budget?||One of the Mayor’s jobs is to submit a yearly budget to the Council. If he were to add “active transportation” as a line item, I would support that.||â€‹If those funds came from self-sustaining funding instruments such as the proposed RAP tax I would be in favor of monies being allocated to active transportation.â€‹|
|If you are elected, what can Provo bicycle advocates do to best help you jump in and feel confident in joining the ongoing discussion about making Provo more bicycle-friendly?||I think your committee is doing a great job of getting your message out. Â I enjoyed your recent committee meeting and look forward to attending more in the future.||All of the above. Get me on my bike touring section of the city that the acting committees see as areas for improvement, or areas that are examples of improvement. I’m a biker!
|Is there anything else youâ€™d like voters to know about you and your experiences or positions related to bicycling?||While in High School I was part of a cycling group that held regular races and field trips. At BYU I took the first cycling class, which was offered on a trial basis to see if there was enough interest.To get an A in the class you had to ride 20 miles per day. My mission took me to Finland where I spent two years on a bike. I know what it feels like to be run off the road.||There is much debate back and forth on the benefit of bike lanes reducing road width and acting to slow traffic in neighborhood streets. I know it works and I’m aÂ proponentÂ of â€‹a complete street with bike lanes serving as a safety lane for bikers as well as serving to slow speeding traffic in neighborhoods. I’m heavily in favor of right of way for pedestrians and bikers and exploring intersections and roads that protect active transportation.|
District 5 Provo City Council Candidates
You can vote for one of these candidates if you live in Provo’s District 5 (see PDF District Map)
|Dave Hardingdaveharding.org||Hemi (Stephen Hemingway)
|Would you be willing to sponsor or support a â€œComplete Streetsâ€ bill for Provo?||Yes, I would sponsor or support a Complete Streets bill which would require the consideration of Complete Street principles during the planning of new and refurbished roads. A similar requirement is in place to consider bicycle facilities, and I support broadening it to all Complete Street principles.||Yes, I will sponsor it.
|Would you be in favor of including active transportation (infrastructure for biking / walking) as a line item in the city budget?||I would have to do more research before deciding if I would push for an active transportation line item, but this is not because I feel that active transportation is unimportant. First, it should be noted that the Administration has the responsibility of proposing the budget. Second, a line item could be a double-edged sword. Right now money is being spent on active transportation as the projects are deemed worthy and typically as a part of larger transportation projects. If a line item is created, it is possible that the same worthy projects might not be funded once the line item is exhausted. There would be political pressure to keep the line item small, so the result may be a net decrease in active transportation funding.||Yes, line item sounds like a grand idea.|
|If you are elected, what can Provo bicycle advocates do to best help you jump in and feel confident in joining the ongoing discussion about making Provo more bicycle-friendly?||There is always more to learn, but I feel like I’ve already “jumped in” and have joined the conversation and the efforts to make Provo more bicycle-friendly. Last year I was recognized with a “Golden Spoke” award from the Provo Bicycle Committee (http://www.bikeprovo.org/golden-spoke-award-winner-spring-2014-david-harding/) for such efforts. I think the bicycling advocates are doing a great job providing opportunities for decision makers to learn about and experience bicycling in Provo and look forward to continuing to work with you.||Help me get elected first, then we will go from there.|
|Is there anything else youâ€™d like voters to know about you and your experiences or positions related to bicycling?||I think the link above shares more than I’d be comfortable sharing about my experiences and positions. I love the direction that bicycling in Provo is headed and the momentum that we have. I am very grateful to the many dedicated advocates for improving our transportation options. I am hopeful to continue doing my part to improve the quality of life in Provo in a new role as a Council Member, and ask for your vote. Learn more about my positions on a variety of topics at http://DaveHarding.org.||When I lived in SLC in the Indian Hills Neighborhood, I used to ride east up Emigration Canyon and then over to Parley’s Canyon to come Â home via I-80. Â This was a real exciting ride on an old Azuki 10 speed. Very ambitious. On my 40th birthday I rode to Parley’s Summit. I think is something people should know about me. This shows I have hutzpah.|
Districts 1 and 4 will also have candidates up for election; however, they did not respond by the date of this posting.
When it comes to making Provo bicycle-friendly, our city council members make a huge difference. Please be sure to review these responses carefully, read their full bios on the links above, and tell your friends to vote on November 3rd.