Testify for biking and Walking!

Please testify in support of better safer bike laws!

Public hearing Tuesday, July 11th, at the regular Assembly meeting (5pm-11pm at Loussac Library):

  • Testify in-person (likely after 7pm) Bike Anchorage members will gather and testify in support!
  • Sign up for phone testimony (sign up online by 5pm Monday, add AO 2023-65 to the subject)
  • Send an email to [email protected] in support!

(Use our template but PLEASE customize it with your personal story, thoughts, and opinion. Assembly members love to hear from you about biking in Anchorage!)

Details for our Call to Action!

The Anchorage Assembly is currently considering an update to rules of the road that apply to bicyclists

This update was initiated to:

  1. Relax rules that were made for cars but don’t make sense for bicyclists (or are even dangerous for them)
  2. Remove the potential for discriminatory enforcement of those rules that aren’t doing any good anyway. While biased enforcement has not been a rampant issue in Anchorage, it is a nationwide problem, and we’d like to proactively ensure it won’t become a problem here.

The biggest updates are:

  • Bicyclists may treat stop signs as yield signs (one component of “Idaho Stop”). 
    • Why this is good: Maintaining momentum is safer for bicyclists.
  • “Dead red” allowance: Bicyclists may proceed through stop lights after 120 seconds if the light doesn’t change. 
    • Why this is good: Signals are not designed to detect bicyclists in Anchorage, and we can’t always reach the crosswalk button.
  • $0 fines for lack of helmet, lights, bell, etc
    • Why this is good: State laws mean the Muni cannot remove those requirements entirely, but zeroing out the fines will prevent enforcement becoming a burden for people who may not be able to afford all that equipment.

We want two additional changes:

  • Change “dead red” to the second component of the Idaho Stop: Bicyclists may treat stop lights as stop signs. 
    • Why: This is much simpler and removes the possibility for biased enforcement if you don’t wait 120 seconds.
  • Decriminalize jaywalking
    • Why: Nationwide, jaywalking enforcement is highly discriminatory and laws and enforcement does not improve safety or save lives.

6 minute video on why Idaho Stop Laws make sense and great points for your testimony :)