- What's a PAC?
- What is BikesPAC
- Why are PACs necessary?
- As someone who works in bike business, why should I care about BikesPAC?
- What’s the difference between Bikes Belong and BikesPAC?
- Who can contribute to BikesPAC?
- I am an executive at a Bikes Belong member company? How can I contribute to BikesPAC?
PAC stands for Political Action Committee. A PAC is a private group organized to support the election or re-election of government officials and/or advance a political issue or legislation. Most PACs provide financial support to the re-election campaigns of members of Congress. While PACs are exclusively funded through individual contributions, they often represent the interests of businesses or associations.
The Bikes Belong Coalition launched BikesPAC in 2003 as the bike industry's way to support the members of Congress who back bicycling. Since its inception, BikesPAC has contributed nearly $200,000 to the re-election campaigns of individual members of Congress. BikesPAC is absolutely bipartisan--contributing equally to Republicans and Democrats.
It would be nice to think that the best ideas--like bicycling as a solution to obesity, road congestion and air pollution--would automatically rise to the top. But we live in a country of 310 million people where there are countless different perspectives on just about every issue. The bike industry is just one of about 1,000 different types of businesses working to influence federal transportation policy and funding decisions. This group includes road builders, auto manufacturers, transit interests, and a variety of other well-organized, well-funded organizations. In this swirl of ideas, it’s not surprising that members of Congress listen first to the people they know and the people who support them. BikesPAC moves bicycling into this select group and gives us the opportunity to make our case, face to face. PAC funding will never buy the outcome--and that's a good thing--but it will give us a chance to be heard.
The federal government is the number one investor in bike facilities and programs. These investments—which total more than $5 billion in the last 10 years—pay for bike paths, trails, lanes, bridges, underpasses and Safe Routes to School that make bicycling safer and more convenient. Ultimately—if these investments continue and grow—they will help get more people riding bikes, which will enable the bicycling business to sell more bikes, more equipment, and become stronger nationwide.
Bikes Belong is a 501c6 nonprofit industry group representing the bicycle industry. We work to put more people on bicycles more often. BikesPAC is the bicycle industry’s political action group, administered by Bikes Belong Coalition. BikesPAC collects individual donations from employees of Bikes Belong member companies and contributes the money to the campaigns of members of Congress who support bicycling. Learn more about BikesPAC.
Any individual can contribute to BikesPAC. However, BikesPAC can only ask employees of Bikes Belong member companies to contribute. Corporate contributions are strictly prohibited and will be returned. Contributions of any size are welcome and needed, up to the annual maximum of $5,000 per individual. Contributions can be mailed to: BikesPAC, P.O. Box 2359, Boulder, CO 80306. Click here for the participation form.