GrowSmart Maine Testifies in Support of Increased Options and Access to Transportation

Testimony of Nancy Smith, Executive Director of GrowSmart Maine
in favor of LD 1208,
“Resolve, To Establish the Commuter and Passenger Rail Advisory
Task Force”
May 3, 2013

Senator Mazurek, Representative Theriault and members of the Joint Standing
Committee on Transportation. My name is Nancy Smith, I live in Monmouth
and I am the Executive Director of GrowSmart Maine. As many of you know
from our previous interactions with the committee, GrowSmart Maine is a
statewide non-profit membership-based organization working to grow Maine's
economy, protect its distinctive character, and enhance our state's quality places.

I regret that previously scheduled commitments prevent me or other GrowSmart
Maine representatives from presenting this testimony at today’s Public Hearing.
As a part of our commitment to strengthening Maine’s economy, GrowSmart
Maine is particularly enthusiastic about well grounded, thoughtful and creative
proposals which seek to grow the economy in a sustainable manner while at the
same time preserving our state’s unique character and quality of place.

We believe this bill fits that description.

We support this legislation because it makes sense for the Dept. of Transportation
to work with key stakeholders in developing a process to evaluate and prioritize
investments in commuter and passenger rail service between communities in this
State.

This can only result in the most effective deployment of limited resources, a goal
I know we all can endorse.

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Testimony of Nancy Smith, Executive Director of GrowSmart Maine
in favor of LD 1365,
“An Act To Promote New Models of Mobility and Access to
Transportation”
May 3, 2013
 

Senator Mazurek, Representative Theriault and members of the Joint Standing Committee on Transportation. My name is Nancy Smith and I live in Monmouth. I am the Executive Director of GrowSmart Maine, a statewide non-profit membership-based organization working to grow Maine's economy, protect its distinctive character, and enhance our state's quality places. I regret that previously scheduled commitments prevent me or other GrowSmart Maine representatives from presenting this testimony at today’s Public Hearing.

As a part of our commitment to strengthening Maine’s economy, GrowSmart Maine is particularly enthusiastic about well grounded, thoughtful and creative proposals which seek to grow the economy in a sustainable manner while at the same time preserving our state’s unique character and quality of place. We believe this bill fits that description.

Members of this committee, more than most, understand that transportation infrastructure impacts all aspects of Mainers’ lives; where we live, where we work, how we get between the two as well as to where we recreate and shop. The options available to us also greatly impact our personal health, our household budgets as well as the costs for municipalities as well as state and federal governments.
We support the approach presented in this bill, with a more comprehensive Maine Public Transit Advisory Council and a renewed focus on public transportation. Maine’s population is changing. Our elders are looking for options in where and how they live, more of our young people no longer consider car ownership a necessity but rather a burden, those with disabilities are more engaged than ever in their communities and families work hard in balancing the needs of all their members. In all of these instances, a comprehensive transportation policy, with input from a diverse group of stakeholder groups will make for a stronger, more sustainable Maine.

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