The International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) staff and volunteer delegates attend the National Bike Summit which started in Washington, D.C. this week. They are there to seek financial assistance for urban parks, gather more support for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and to encourage bike-friendly land protection bills. As one of the sponsors, IMBA facilitates workshops to assist the advocates learn about issues that are mountain-bike related. The IMBA staff and delegates will take part of various meetings with Congressional offices for the duration of the bike summit.
The National Bike Summit began with the news from Google regarding the addition of a bike route in Google Maps. Director of IMBA Government affairs Jenn Dice gave her testimony as an expert witness to U. S. House Committee on Natural Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands on the H.R. 4289, the Colorado Wilderness Act of 2009. “There are places in this bill that IMBA can support for Wilderness status, but we will also be asking the Committee and the sponsor to make use of a variety of public land protections that allow mountain biking to continue.” said Dice. The bill is sponsored by Colorado Representative Diana DeGette.
Dice began her testimony with an invitation to all by joining IMBA on a mountain bike ride in Colorado. She further pointed out that Colorado has always provided venues where different activities can converge for the advantage of many interest groups. She closed with a request, “We hope to work with Congress, the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and others to write stronger public land protections that give land managers better forest and recreation management tools, and are inclusive of our human-powered use.”