Governor favors financial transparency, vetoes bikeshare program

Senator Henry Stern (front) talks about Senate Bill 702 beside Assembly members Monique Limon, Todd Gloria and Laura Friedman. Courtesy of Senate Photographer Lorie Shelley.
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California will have stricter campaign finance laws but no universal bikeshare program after Governor Brown signed one and vetoed one of Senator Henry Stern’s bills this week.

Brown made Senate Bill 358 law, known as the Political Reform Act, which requires the secretary of state to post local campaign finance information online.

The bill passed through the legislature with 39 votes in favor on the Senate floor and one in opposition and 73 votes in favor on the Assembly floor and six in opposition.

Despite Stern’s efforts to create a statewide bikeshare program through Senate Bill 702, the governor vetoed the bill saying it was not needed.

In August, Stern and other legislators even rode a mile around the Capitol to gain awareness and support for the bill.

“The Department should continuously assess the demand for this program and expand as needed within its existing authority,” Brown wrote in his veto letter. “This bill is unnecessary.”

If passed, the bill would have required the Department of General Services to expand the State Employee BikeShare Program to other areas across California where it is “feasible and reasonable” to allow state employees to reserve bikes during the work day.

“I think bike advocates who work for the state of California had their voices heard and the governor got the message,” Stern said in a statement to The Signal. “Now we just have to nudge state agencies to step up within their existing authority. There’s an emerging consensus that bike sharing is a solution for public and private employers to manage company car costs, improve health outcomes and do their part to clean California’s air.”

The bikeshare bill had passed the Senate floor unanimously and got 75 yeses and four noes in the Assembly.

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