Drivers, keep the road rage at bay. Effective Aug. 15, the Colin Goodier Protection Act, also dubbed the "Louisiana three feet law," establishes a new set of rules for the driver-to-cyclist relationship. The law requires the following:
• Motorists must provide at least 3 feet of space when passing cyclists — if not, expect a fine of up to $250.
• Verbally or physically abusing cyclists also is prohibited, with fines starting at no less than $200 and possible jail time of up to 30 days.
• The Department of Public Safety and Corrections, Office of Motor Vehicles will include the laws in updated literature for new drivers and will issue new road signage.
• The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission will begin a public awareness campaign.
The law is named for a Baton Rouge doctor who was killed in a traffic accident while on his bicycle in June 2008. Goodier's friends and family created a grass-roots campaign to raise awareness of bicycle and motor vehicle safety. They helped get the House Transportation Committee to pass a draft of the bill, which was signed into law earlier this year.
On Aug. 27, the Alliance for Affordable Energy hosts a presentation and discussion about Entergy New Orleans' proposed Energy Smart program. Sustainable rebuild director Forest Bradley Wright, regulatory affairs director Karen Wimpelberg and legal counsel Jesse George will discuss how the program could impact Entergy customers and the city's green economy.
Last year, New Orleans City Council approved Entergy's citywide energy efficiency program, which aims to create demand for energy-efficiency products, services and developers by making funds available for customers to weatherize up to 7,500 New Orleans homes and provide solar paneling for up to 1,500 homes. The Energy Smart plan's engineers also host a public discussion about the program on Sept. 10, and the City Council utility committee will make a final decision on its design Sept. 17.
Other meetings at the alliance this month include a solar-power workshop on Thursday, Aug. 20, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Emil Albrecht from Gulf South Solar discusses the basics of photovoltaic installation and operation as well as state and federal solar tax credits available to homes and businesses.
Call 208-9761 or visit www.all4energy.org for more information.
The Crescent City Farmers Market and marketumbrella.org estimate the market produces an annual economic impact of more than $8.9 million. The market surveyed 617 shoppers in the last week of June — 338 at Tuesday's market Uptown and 279 at Saturday's market downtown — and determined shoppers spend an average of $32 per visit, with daily gross receipts averaging $31,348, making an annual average of $3.1 million in sales. The market also determined that 24.5 percent of its visitors continue shopping at nearby businesses, spending an additional $19.86 on average per visit and contributing to an additional annual average of $161,753 in tax revenue. Using the Sticky Economic Evaluation Device (SEED), a measurement tool for small businesses, the market multiplied its combined vendor and nearby businesses sales figures by 1.8, a figure determined by the Bureau of Economic Activity specific to the New Orleans area's circulation of dollars.
According to the report, the highest concentration of shoppers came from 70118, 70115, 70130 and 70117 ZIP codes.
Greening America's City
Kenner's Department of Parks and Recreation kicks off its fall series of eco-friendly family activities Sept. 12. The programs, designed for children and families to learn about the environment, include workshops on backyard vegetable growing (9 a.m. Sept. 12 at Woodlake Playground), homegrown container gardening (9 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Oct. 3 at Veterans Park Greenhouse), healthy cooking (10 a.m. Oct. 17 at the Fassbender Center) and urban wildlife (10 a.m. Nov. 21 at Kenner City Park Pavilion). Workshops cost $10-$12 and are suitable for children ages 6 and up. All supplies are included. Call 468-7211 or visit www.kenner.la.us for more information.