Florida Bicycle Association Summer Report
When the Florida legislation closed it’s 2014 session this past May, FBA was proud to learn the success of two key pieces of legislation that our organization supported: the Florida Coast to Coast Connector Trail and the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act. The Florida Coast to Coast Connector Trail will fill in the gaps of existing trails to create a 275-mile long path running from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. Florida’s future Coast to Coast Trail will surpass the current longest bicycle trail, the Katy Trail State Park in Missouri, by 50 miles! Meanwhile, the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act, which targets hit-and-run drivers with enhanced penalties for hitting bicyclists and pedestrians, was UNANIMOUSLY passed by the Florida legislature.
These legislative successes follow several years of other successful legislative efforts, but it comes with a price – dedicated FBA staff, members and volunteers who invest their time and money for the benefit of all Floridians. Are you with us? Join the winning team – become or renew your FBA membership or make a generous donation today. Your tax-deductible donation will allow us to continue all the great work we do for cycling! From our lobbyist in Tallahassee keeping track of cycling related issues to developing and distributing our many cycling educational publications, your membership and donations will make a difference. It’s as easy as going to the FBA website (floridabicycle.org), and hitting the “Join Us” or “Donate!” button at the top of the page. Thank you!
Other significant events we want our members to know about include the imminent departure of two long term FBA staff members, one veteran board member, and one new staff member:
- Tim Bustos, FBA’s Executive Director, will be leaving on July 15th, mainly to help out his elderly parents in Pensacola who are now requiring extra assistance. The up side is that his grandchildren just moved to Pensacola as well, so there are new little cyclists to train!
- Dan Moser, FBA’s Program Manager and Membership Director, will be leaving on July 31 to assist with family health issues in Fort. Myers. Over the years Dan has been involved on many committees and organizations at the local, regional, and state level that focus on bike/pedestrian/traffic safety, education, policy, and planning. Dan will continue with local efforts in Fort Myers.
- Mighk Wilson, long time FBA board member, stepped down at FBA’s last quarterly board meeting in DeLand, on June 14th. Many of you may remember Mighk as one of FBA’s early founders. His wife, Carol was in fact, FBA’s first executive director – where she worked as a volunteer! We all owe both of them a big “thanks” for helping make FBA what it is today.
- Becky Afonso, FBA member since 1998,will serve as our interim Executive Director. Becky will be starting on July 1st, before Tim’s departure on July 15th, to allow the torch to be properly passed on. Becky has over 17 years of cycling experience in project management, volunteer coordination, route logistics, event directing, marketing, and yes, may be known to some as the “Coffee Lady”.
We appreciate the efforts of those who have served the Florida Bicycle Association to bring it to where it is today, and look forward to future successes for those taking on the challenge to continue the cause. No matter where in Florida you ride or type of bicycle you prefer, Let’s Ride Together!