Take 3 for “Give Me 3.” Safe Passing Law Heads to Assembly Committee on Monday

The pomp and circumstance for the most recent effort to mandate a 3-feet passing distance for cars overtaking bicyclists is noticeably more quiet than the past two years. Whatever the reason, perhaps cyclists aren’t willing to get their hopes up again after Governor Jerry Brown’s two incoherent veto messages in 2012 and 2011, the statewide cycling movement doesn’t seem as revved up this time around. Even the “Give Me 3” website created by the California Bike Coalition for the specific reason of passing such legislation has not been updated to mention 2013’s AB 1371 by Assembly Member Steven Bradford (D-Gardena).

Take 3.

However, all of that is starting to change. On Sunday, Bradford will stand with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who had backed a safe passing law following his own bike crash in 2010, and hundreds of cyclists at the “opening” of CicLAvia to call for the legislature and Governor to act quickly to make a three foot passing law a reality in California. On Monday, the Assembly Transportation Committee will hear AB 1371, the bill’s first step on its way to becoming a law.

“I am thrilled to join Mayor Villaraigosa at CicLAvia which will, for the first time, come to the 62nd District by way of Venice,” Bradford said. “This is a great event to raise awareness of cyclists’ right to ride safely on our city streets, and this bill will do the same.”

Cyclists who want to show support for the legislation can join Bradford and Villaraigosa at a 9:30 a.m. CicLAvia kick-off press conference on Olvera Street on April 21st before riding off towards Venice. Or, you can voice your support digitally by signing the online petition or using the #3feet4safety hashtag on social media.

Bradford’s bill is designed to increase safety for cyclists on California’s roads, making cities more livable and environmentally friendly. AB 1371, known as the Three Feet for Safety Act, establishes a minimum three-foot barrier for automobiles passing bicycles on California streets.

As mentioned above, similar legislation authored by Senator Alan Lowenthal (D-LB) were passed by the Assembly and Senate before Brown’s vetos. Bradford’s staff has already made changes to the legislation to attempt to make the bill more acceptable to the Governor’s office and his advisors at Caltrans.

Lowenthal is still a large supporter of safe passing laws, but was elected to the United States House of Representatives last November.

Twenty states have passed three foot passing laws, and Pennsylvania has a four foot passing law. Brown is joined only by Texas Governor Rick Perry as the only executives to ever veto a safe passing law.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Assembly Joins Senate and Says : Give Me 3

|
Yesterday, the California State Assembly joined the Senate in passing S.B. 910 by an overwhelming 41-20 vote.  S.B. 910 would require motorists to give bicyclists a three foot cushion when passing at miles in excess of fifteen miles an hour faster than the cyclist.  The legislation needs re-approval by the Senate, something that occurs 99% of […]

Lance and Tony Have Message for Gov. Brown: Give Us 3

|
CicLAvia ride buddies Lance Armstrong and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa have joined forces again.  Their target: Governor Jerry Brown.  Their message: sign S.B. 910, the state’s three foot passing law that would protect cyclists from drivers who pass too close and too fast. “Gov. Brown can help make our roads safer for everyone by […]

Governor Shocks Cyclists with “Give Me 3” Rejection, Approves Bills Making Infrastructure Improvements Easier

|
(Note: It was a busy 72 hours in Sacramento this weekend. Streetsblog will split it’s coverage of Governor Jerry Brown’s signings and vetos into two separate stories, one pertaining to bicycles, and a second post for everything else.) For the second year in a row, California Governor Jerry Brown issued a last-minute veto of legislation mandating […]

The State Senate Decides Whether to “Give Me 3” on Thursday

|
Senate Bill 1464, the three-foot bike passing bill proposed by California Senator Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), heads back to the Senate on Thursday, May 24 after sailing through committee last week. Buoyed by a strong campaign by the California Bike Coalition (CBC) and TransForm, thousands of supporters have already written letters to their senators urging them to pass the bill. […]