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earl blumenauer

Congressman’s fruitcake ice cream will help buy gift bikes for Portland kids

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

This is definitely our favorite ice cream charity partnership ever.

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Blumenauer will ride to celebrate new path along Marine Drive

Thursday, April 17th, 2014
Section of new path in Blue Lake Park adjacent to Marine Drive.
(Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)

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Biking continues to have bipartisan appeal, baffling D.C. media

Thursday, November 21st, 2013
Blumenauer opens Interbike-1
Republicans disagree with Rep. Earl Blumenauer on
plenty, but can find common ground with him on bikes.
(Photo by J.Maus/BikePortland)

Last week we wrote that “biking and walking safety should be a bipartisan issue.” Today we got a reminder that it still is — and just how rare such issues are recently.

On the same day the Senate recut its rules to fit the current slash-and-burn politics of Washington, Politico published a profile of U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Portland), puzzling over how one of the House’s most liberal members got two Republicans to cosponsor his bill to ensure that bike safety is officially one of the ways to measure a federal road project’s success.

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Blumenauer, DeFazio team with GOP on Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act

Friday, November 15th, 2013
L to R: Earl Blumenauer (D), Mike McCaul (R), Peter DeFazio (D), Howard Coble (R).
(Images: Blumenauer by J. Maus/BikePortland. All others via Facebook)

On a day when we learned U.S. traffic fatalities in 2012 went up for the first time since 2005 — with notable spikes in bicycling and walking deaths — Oregon Congressmen Earl Blumenauer and Peter DeFazio joined with two of their Republican colleagues, Howard Coble (NC) and Mike McCaul (TX) to introduce the Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act (H.R. 3494). (more…)

Bill would make bike-sharing benefits tax-deductible (updated)

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013
Bike share demo-9-8
Not considered public transit by the IRS. Yet.
(Photo by J.Maus/BikePortland)

U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer is cosponsoring a bill to officially recognize bike sharing as the newest category of public transit, at least in the eyes of the IRS.

Unfortunately, the bill is limited by a persistent oversight in tax policy that restricts its benefits to those who both live and work in areas that have bikesharing stations.

It’s a new goal for the city transportation commissioner turned Congressman, who spent years pushing for the IRS’s first bike commuting benefit. The $20-a-month deduction finally passed as part of the 2008 bank bailout (despite Blumenauer’s “no” vote on that package).

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Blumenauer urges Portland bike makers to forge new industry alliance

Thursday, November 7th, 2013
U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, top left, with local bike
makers at the United Bicycle Institute Wednesday.
(Photo by M. Andersen/BikePortland)

(Jonathan Maus contributed to this story.)

Portland is nationally known as the city with the highest number of bike riders. But when it comes to making bikes, our reputation is about quality, not quantity. We’re known for custom, handcrafted bikes, but not for producing them in large numbers. The city’s mature cluster of bike makers could change that if they teamed up, representatives of the local industry’s small businesses agreed at a roundtable discussion led by U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer on Wednesday.

The event was convened by Rep. Blumenauer, who said he’d “dedicated my life” to making biking a big part of the city and would happily look for ways to help the industry itself become “the next part of the Oregon identity” if they can offer a clear list of ideas within the next few months. The event was a more focused follow-up to a visit to the same location by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce in September.

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Secretary of Commerce visit highlights Portland’s bicycle industry

Friday, September 6th, 2013
US Commerce Secretary in Portland-5
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker gets
a tour of United Bicycle Institute with owner Ron
Sutphin (left) and Congressman Earl Blumenauer.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Flanked by Congressman Earl Blumenauer, the United States Department of Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker beamed about the cycling “revolution” she’s seeing across the country during a stop on her national listening tour in north Portland this morning. But to keep it going, she said business owners must have a skilled labor force.

And that’s where United Bicycle Institute comes in.

On that note, Pritzker toured UBI’s Portland campus on North Williams Ave. UBI offers vocational training in frame building and offers certificates in professional bicycle mechanics. In addition to learning about the key role UBI plays as a national vocational leader with over 20,000 graduates to their credit, Pritzker also hosted a private (no media allowed) roundtable discussion with about 20 local bicycle industry leaders. Pritzker and her staff have toured over a dozen cities in recent months doing similar events and the goal is to hear about the issues facing business owners and develop a strategy for the Commerce Department on how to help them.
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Blumenauer on new transportation bill: “A missed opportunity” and a “call to arms”

Monday, July 2nd, 2012
Blumenauer on the Hawthorne Bridge.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

As the dust has settled a bit on the new, two-year transportation bill that was passed last week, it’s time to start understanding what it means for bicycling going forward. On Friday, I got a chance to talk about it with one of the most important national figures for bicycling, U.S. Congressman Earl Blumenauer.

Blumenauer is not only regarded as a major champion for bicycling in Congress, as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, he also had a seat at the table of the conference committee that hashed out the final bill. At the outset of our conversation, I could hear from his voice that he was exasperated after what must have been a bruising negotiation process. (more…)

Gala event, concert will toast Blumenauer’s 40 year career

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
Congressional Reception-10
Blumenauer in D.C. in March.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

Portland native Earl Blumenauer has served in elected office in Oregon since 1972 when he won a seat in the Oregon House of Representatives at the age of 24. He’s been in politics ever since. On June 14th, Blumenauer’s supporters will throw him a big party to commemorate his 40 years in office.

The event, dubbed “40 Years of Leadership,” will take place at Memorial Coliseum and will include performances by Pink Martini and Storm Large.

During his four decades of leadership, Blumenauer has presided over much of the bicycle and transportation legacy that our region is so well known for. From his position as head of the City of Portland Department of Public Works (what we now call the Bureau of Transportation) from 1987 to 1996, Blumenauer (with Mia Birk as his right-hand woman) oversaw an explosion in bikeway miles. From his office in Washington D.C., where he’s served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives since 1996, Blumenauer is without a doubt the most influential and well-known champion for bicycling on Capitol Hill.
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Blumenauer: Transpo bill mess could be “springboard” for the movement

Friday, February 3rd, 2012
Blumenauer does not take attacks
on bicycling lightly.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

As arguably the most bike and transit-sensitive member of the U.S. Congress, Earl Blumenauer has had a trying week.

Yesterday, the widely-maligned House transportation bill, a bill that eliminates the Safe Routes to School program and basically strips out all of the pro-bike provisions, moved through a marathon hearing and was passed out of committee this morning. Also this morning, Blumenauer saw the House Ways and Means committee debate — and then pass — a bill that severs the 30-year link between gas tax revenue and transit funding.
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