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SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau

Solon urges government to promote bikes as alternative transportation
Writer: Lorelei V. Castillo, MRS-PRIB
09 October 2011 09:22:05 AM

A lawmaker is urging the government and the private sector to promote bicycles as an alternative mode of transportation.

Rep. Carmelo Lazatin (1st District, Pampanga), author of House Bill 5335, said the aim of the bill is to encourage the government and the private sector to focus on instituting a serious program in promoting bicycle use.

"The government lacks a serious program to promote bicycle use despite the many benefits it brings, not only to health, but to the economy and environment as well," Lazatin said.

Lazatin said with the spiraling cost of oil products, there is a serious need to find alternative modes of transportation and one of this is the use of the bicycle.

Under the measure to be known as the "Bicycle Use Act of 2011," all government agencies are directed to grant bicycle-riding employees a 30-minute window before they be considered late, taking into consideration the long travel time they will take in reporting to work.

It shall likewise coordinate with the LGUs in leading the establishment of bicycle lanes on all major thoroughfares all over the country.

The bill enjoins the private sector, including employers and establishment owners to help in the promotion of bicycle use through the setting-up of secure and ample parking spaces and facilities like bike racks in all public and private commercial establishments, including but not limited to public markets, malls, restaurants and stores.

The standard size of the parking space to be allotted shall be determined upon the formulation of the implementing rules and regulations of the proposed act.

Also, the private sector shall grant the legitimate bicycle-riding employees a 30-minute window before they be considered late.

Under the bill, all local government units (LGUs) are directed to monitor all private, public establishments and employers if they comply with all the provisions of the proposed act, implement penalties to violators and ensure that bicycle lanes are properly utilized.

The measure mandates the Departments of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and Labor and Employment (DOLE) to issue the necessary rules and regulations.

Public and private establishments who violate the provisions of the measure will be meted with a penalty of suspension and revocation of their business permits.

Building permits shall not be issued to contractors and builders of structures intended for public and commercial use if their plans do not include parking for bicycles.