As the Sept. 30, 2011, deadline nears for extension of transportation authorization legislation and the federal gas tax, the path Congress will take to pass a bill or extension is unclear. APTA will therefore support two critical advocacy outreach efforts emphasizing the need for federal funding; both are nationwide programs that will provide opportunities for member participation.
In early September, APTA and its members will mobilize around an effort called “Transportation Works,” a program developed by the APTA Marketing and Communications Committee to demonstrate the value of federal investment in public transportation and highlight the connection between public transit and jobs. “Transportation Works” will raise public awareness of how federal dollars are being returned to the community in investments in public transit infrastructure.
To assist transit and business members in joining this program, APTA developed a toolkit that includes a fact sheet on public transit spending and jobs; print ads for placement in local markets; and a press release template. The messages focus on the impact of the lack of investment on real businesses, job creation, and the public transit user.
Public transportation agencies can use the ad templates on the sides of buses and in high visibility public transit centers. APTA members can create events and hold meetings with members of Congress.
A strong component of the effort will be to direct riders to visit the web site to learn more about the importance of federal funding.
Don’t ‘X’ Out Public Transit
In late September, “Don’t ‘X’ Out Public Transit Day,” local transit advocates—in conjunction with Transportation for America, transit unions, APTA members, and staff—will organize rallies and press events in communities nationwide.
The day’s activities will feature release of a statement outlining the impact of transit funding cuts on communities throughout the country; national advertising; and the placement of Xs on vehicles in areas with participating public transit systems. The unions will encourage drivers to wear T-shirts, buttons, or armbands signifying the day. All the partners will also organize social media and take action messages.
For more information, contact Mantill Williams.