USA’s Peak Advocacy Bodies Set to Merge
Three key American cycling organisations are mid way through a year long process aimed at unifying them into a single body.
The oldest is the 132 year old League of American Bicyclists, formed in 1880. It’s members are individual cyclists. The League has a $2.3 million budget and 14 staff.
Next is the Alliance for Biking and Walking which is a coalition of more than 200 local and state based cycling advocacy groups. It has six staff and an $860,000 budget.
Finally there is Bikes Belong, founded in 1999 and headed by Tim Blumenthal, who is set to become the leader of the new merged body. Bikes Belong is the American equivalent of Australia’s Cycling Promotion Fund. It is funded by the bike industry. Bikes Belong’s 2011 budget was $6.1 million and it has 40 staff.
The goal of merging the three organisations is to create a larger more effective and powerful organisation with a clear, integrated structure and a single voice.
A final decision to proceed should be made by this September with the new organisation set to launch in January 2013.