Best of Pedalshift 126: The Katy Trail

After sitting with it a few weeks since my return from bicycling the Katy Trail, I shared my thoughts on everything about the ride… the heat, the rain, the trail surface, and much more. Where does the Katy Trail stand up to other tour routes in the US? I have some thoughts on that! Originally podcast June 28, 2018.

Best of Pedalshift 126: The Katy Trail

The post Best of Pedalshift 126: The Katy Trail appeared first on Pedalshift.

Lobbying Series Part 1 – Introduction to Lobbying

On this episode, we begin a multi-part series on lobbying for 501(c)(3) public charities — the limits, the definitions, the exceptions and much more. If you’re advocating on federal, state or local public policy in 2021, this is the podcast you’ve been looking for. 

Our Attorneys

Tim MooneyNatalie OssenfortQuyen Tu

Intro – Why are we talking about public charities and lobbying? 

  • It’s still worth a listen for 501(c)(4)s, private foundations, and others. 
  • Underscore that not all advocacy is lobbying (which is why we’ll spend several episodes on defining lobbying) 
  • Lobbying limits as a function of tax treatment and deductibility of contributions to 501(c)(3) 
  • Is this a 1st Amendment issue of speech being curtailed? Not according to the Supreme Court of the United States 

 

The Insubstantial Part Test 

  • This is the default measurement system for 501(c)(3)s 
  • Very little IRS or legal guidance on this 
  • No “substantial” part of a public charity’s activities can be lobbying 
  • No definition of lobbying 
  • No definition of substantial 
  • All activity is counted, whether it costs money or is done by volunteers 
  • Most practitioners go with 5% but that is not an IRS rule! 
  • Report lobbying on Schedule C of Form 990 

 

501(h) Election 

  • In the 1970s Congress passed reform legislation that included another choice for most charities 
  • 501(c)(3)s must “elect” this option 
  • Available to most charities, but not churches or auxiliaries (controlled by) of churches also referred to as houses of worship 
  • This is an expenditure-based test 
  • Clear limits based on organizations exempt expenditure 
  • For most 501(c)(3)s that’s 20% of their annual exempt expenditures but this limit does go down as the organization’s exempt expenditures go up 
  • Max cap is $1 million for organizations with exempt expenditures $17 million or more 
  • Clear, bright-line definitions of lobbying 

 

What Are the Advantages 501(h)? 

  • Clarity of what is lobbying 
  • Organizations ca pay excise taxes for going over limits rather than risk losing their tax status 
  • Easier to plan for lobbying activities 
  • Easier to report 
  • No additional risk of audit (perhaps less?) 
  • Example: AFJ and many other 501(c)(3) public charities 

 

What Are the Advantage of the Insubstantial Part Test (IPT)? 

  • Vanishingly small 
  • Very large organizations with budgets $100 million or more maybe able to lobby more with IPT than under the 501(h) election despite the IPT’s lack of clarity 
  • These organizations can afford to hire lawyers! 
  • Example: The Nature Conservancy 

 

Bolder Advocacy strongly recommends that public charities make the 501(h) election 

How do you know if your organization has made 501h? Look at your Form 990 Schedule C. 

How do you make the 501(h) election? File IRS Form 5768

  • Backdates to the beginning of the organization’s tax year 
  • You only have to make this election once 

 

Resources 

Being a Player: A Guide to the IRS Lobbying Regulations for Advocacy Charities 

What is Advocacy? 

Worry-Free Lobbying For Nonprofits: How To Use The 501(h) Election To Maximize Effectiveness 

Public Charities Can Lobby: Guidelines for 501(c)(3) Public Charities (Factsheet) 

Lobbying Rules For Houses of Worship 

501(h) Lobbying Limit Calculator 

Taking a stance on impeachment and expulsion

On this episode, we chat about impeachment and detail how nonprofits, including 501(c)(3)s, can take a stance on the renewed calls for impeachment and removal of the President plus calls for expulsion of some members of the Senate and House following the failed attempt to baselessly challenge the November election and the insurrection of January 6th.

Resources

Reminder: Nonprofits Can Advocate for Impeachment

Can a 501(c)(3) Advocate for Impeachment of a Federal Office Holder?

Taking a Stance on Articles of Impeachment and the Senate Trial

The Pedalshift Project 229: 2020 End-of-the-Year Holiday Spectacular

On this episode, we continue a tradition like no other, a futile attempt to review the year in podcast form. And since no amount of fictional podcast elves or award shows can possibly out-2020 this year, we have special guests and friends of the show Brock Dittus and Aaron Flores of the Sprocket Podcast to help make sense of this year and the year to come.


Pedalshift 2020 End-of-the-Year Holiday Spectacular

Hey it’s the direct download link for  The Pedalshift Project 228: My Bike Tour Planning Process (mp3).

Subscribe/Follow The Pedalshift Project:
RSSiTunes – Overcast – Android – Google Podcasts – StitcherTuneIn – IHeartRadio – Spotify

Reach out to the show via email, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109

Pedalshift 2020 End-of-the-Year Holiday Spectacular

 
  • Adventure in 2020 by bike included local service
  • Bikes helped to process everything going on
  • Bicycling during a pandemic
  • Music selection in ID dive bars (surprising twist)
  • Montana adventure (including special defense of small Montana towns)
  • Low on water theory
  • The one true flavor of sports drinks
  • 2021 planning, or not
  • Introversion and misanthropy on tour
  • Bike camping when you’re ready for the kids
  • Staying local vs. traveling afar
  • Access regardless of privilege
  • RIP Dan Gebhart and a shout to our communities

As always we like to close out the show with a special shoutout to the Pedalshift Society! Because of support from listeners like you, Pedalshift is a weekly bicycle touring podcast with a global community, expanding into live shows and covering new tours like this spring’s DC to Cincinnatti bike tour! If you like what you hear, you can support the show for 5 bucks, 2 bucks or even a buck a month. And there’s one-shot and annual options if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it all out at pedalshift.net/society.

Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Harry Telgadas
Chris Barron
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Mr. T
Nathan Poulton
Stephen Dickerson
Vince LoGreco
Cody Floerchinger
Tom Benenati
Greg Braithwaite
Sandy Pizzio
Jeff Muster
Seth Pollack
Joseph Quinn
Drue Porter
Byron Paterson
Joachim Raber
Ray Jackson
Jeff Frey
Kenny Mikey
Lisa Hart
John Denkler
Steve Hankel
Miguel Quinones
Alejandro Avilés-Reyes
Keith Spangler
Greg Towner
Dan Gebhart, RIP
Jody Dzuranin
Lucas Barwick
Michael Baker
Brian Bechtol
Reinhart Bigl
Greg Middlemis
Connie Moore
William Gothmann
Brian Benton
Joan Churchill
Mike Bender
Rick Weinberg
Billy Crafton
Gary Matushak
Greg L’Etoile-Lopes
James Sloan
Jonathan Dillard
John Funk
Tom Bilcze
Ronald Piroli
Dave Roll
Brian Hafner
Misha LeBlanc
Ari Messinger
David Gratke
Todd Groesbeck
Wally Estrella
Sue Reinert
John Leko
Stephen Granata
Phillip Mueller
Robert Lackey
Dominic Carol
Jacqi McCulloch
John Hickman
Carl Presseault
David Neves
Patty Louise
Terry Fitzgerald
Peter Steinmetz
Timothy Fitzpatrick
Michael Liszewski
Hank O’Donnell
David Zanoni
David Weil
Matthew Sponseller
Scott Angelo

Music

You’ve been hearing about Jason Kent and his music for many fine episodes. Sunfields has a new album in 2021, AND Jason has a new solo album in 2021, AND his first solo album is now streaming on Spotify, including America, the Pedalshift theme. Go listen!

The post The Pedalshift Project 229: 2020 End-of-the-Year Holiday Spectacular appeared first on Pedalshift.

In Defense of Lobbying

As we close out 2020 and look to the start of new legislative sessions in Congress and in many states, we wanted to remind folks that lobbying is an important tool for nonprofits to make positive changes for the communities they serve.

Our attorneys for this episode:

  • Tim Mooney
  • Jen Powis
  • Ronnie Pawelko

Shownotes

  • Bolder Advocacy: lobbying advocates
  • Why it’s important to lobby
  • Why has lobbying become a dirty word in some circles?
  • What role will lobbying play in 2021?
  • Coming in January – a three-part series on the ins and outs of lobbying for public charities and more.

The Pedalshift Project 228: My Bike Tour Planning Process

It’s the end of the season, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dream up new tours. In this edition, I open up my bike tour planning process and technique for a brand new tour I’m thinking about next year. Once upon a time Snake Plissken escaped from NY… this potential tour turns the tables!


The Pedalshift Project 228: My Bike Tour Planning Process

Hey it’s the direct download link for  The Pedalshift Project 228: My Bike Tour Planning Process (mp3).

Subscribe/Follow The Pedalshift Project:
RSSiTunes – Overcast – Android – Google Podcasts – StitcherTuneIn – IHeartRadio – Spotify

Reach out to the show via email, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109

The Journal: My Bike Tour Planning Process

More tour wishcasting!

A potential spring 2021 tour to scratch a few itches
A bit of tour planning in lieu of touring
Some insight into how I come up with new tours

How I start

Come up with where to go and from where I’m starting (usually in that order)
Factor in limitations (i.e. money, COVID, time)
Reverse engineer things from there

Destination

I’ve always wanted to find touring on the east coast that satisfies me the same way riding on the west coast does
Might be worth rethinking that… the infrastructure just isn’t the same
But, let’s go with NYC

Starting point

I’ve tried to do a start from DC in planning before and I tend to get frustrated/dissatisfied with the route. New plan: start from the cabin and see how it goes

Resources

C&O, Google Maps, Ride With GPS, message boards and past research

My path

It seems like the C&O is a good gateway to get me east to a point that gives me a good path north
C&O to Williamsport, MD
From there it’s trying to connect north into PA and hit one of its surprisingly robust bike routes

Have I mentioned US highways are GREAT for bike touring? Hwy 101 makes up the bulk of the riding in Oregon and CA, and it has a good to great shoulder for many parts of the ride. 
Turns out, US Hwy 11 is an *excellent* gateway northbound into PA
From there, I go a bit less than 30 miles to Chambersburg to hook up with US Hwy 30 eastbound and PA Bike Route S which takes me essentially all the way to Philly

The lightbulb

That’s when things get great and I realize there’s a resource to tap into… the East Coast Greenway, a route I’ve been meaning to hit for years.
The gap between the end of Route S and Greenway is pretty minimal, and that gets me onto a trail in NJ and on my way through Trenton and then north to New Brunswick as I’d cut across the center of the state before turning north again to Elizabeth, Newark/Jersey City and then a quick ferry or PATH train to Manhattan!

Mileage? Timing?

That’s the next step because that can determine whether this has camping possibilities before I’d have to look at hotels or Airbnbs later in the trip as things get decidedly less wildernessy

Generally, I figure it’s 6 days or so? 
Chambersburg
York
2 days to Trenton
2 days to NYC

Terrain

Mixed bag – lots of up and down hills in parts
Good shoulders when on roads
Some trail riding

Other things

Bike – Almost assuredly the full-sized touring bike, but Brompton isn’t out of the question if I decide not to camp

Camping/Lodging – Not sure – that’s next steps but I suspect the stealth camp option would be pretty compelling

Is this COVID-friendly? Not sure. I’d probably have to consider hotels.
Worst case might be a good one for post-vaccination but too-early-to-consider-flying kind of a tour?

Getting back – Amtrak, one-way car-rental, bus – lots of options, some better than others from a COVID perspective

So… doing this?

I’m pretty interested. I’ve also always wanted to circumnavigate Manhattan as a day tour, so if timing allows, that could be the bonus add-on!

 

As always we like to close out the show with a special shoutout to the Pedalshift Society! Because of support from listeners like you, Pedalshift is a weekly bicycle touring podcast with a global community, expanding into live shows and covering new tours like this spring’s DC to Cincinnatti bike tour! If you like what you hear, you can support the show for 5 bucks, 2 bucks or even a buck a month. And there’s one-shot and annual options if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it all out at pedalshift.net/society.

Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Harry Telgadas
Chris Barron
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Stuart Buchan
Mr. T
Nathan Poulton
Stephen Dickerson
Vince LoGreco
Cody Floerchinger
Tom Benenati
Greg Braithwaite
Sandy Pizzio
Jeff Muster
Seth Pollack
Joseph Quinn
Drue Porter
Byron Paterson
Joachim Raber
Ray Jackson
Jeff Frey
Kenny Mikey
Lisa Hart
John Denkler
Steve Hankel
Miguel Quinones
Alejandro Avilés-Reyes
Keith Spangler
Greg Towner
Dan Gebhart, RIP
Jody Dzuranin
Lucas Barwick
Michael Baker
Brian Bechtol
Reinhart Bigl
Greg Middlemis
Connie Moore
William Gothmann
Brian Benton
Joan Churchill
Mike Bender
Rick Weinberg
Billy Crafton
Gary Matushak
Greg L’Etoile-Lopes
James Sloan
Jonathan Dillard
John Funk
Tom Bilcze
Ronald Piroli
Dave Roll
Brian Hafner
Misha LeBlanc
Ari Messinger
David Gratke
Todd Groesbeck
Wally Estrella
Sue Reinert
John Leko
Stephen Granata
Phillip Mueller
Robert Lackey
Dominic Carol
Jacqi McCulloch
John Hickman
Carl Presseault
David Neves
Patty Louise
Terry Fitzgerald
Peter Steinmetz
Timothy Fitzpatrick
Michael Liszewski
Hank O’Donnell
David Zanoni
David Weil

Music

You’ve been hearing about Jason Kent and his music for many fine episodes. Sunfields has a new album in 2021, AND Jason has a new solo album in 2021, AND his first solo album is now streaming on Spotify, including America, the Pedalshift theme. Go listen!

The post The Pedalshift Project 228: My Bike Tour Planning Process appeared first on Pedalshift.

The Pedalshift Project 227: One Last Time on the C&O in 2020

I tried to make the last tour of 2020 a sufferfest, but it turns out one last time on the C&O for the year was pretty festive. It’s the final tour journal for a very oddball year!


The Pedalshift Project 227: One Last Time on the C&O in 2020

Hey it’s the direct download link for  The Pedalshift Project 227: One Last Time on the C&O in 2020 (mp3).

Subscribe/Follow The Pedalshift Project:
RSSiTunes – Overcast – Android – Google Podcasts – StitcherTuneIn – IHeartRadio – Spotify

Reach out to the show via email, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109

The Journal: One Last Time on the C&O for 2020 

No shownotes, no stats, just me yammering away for 40 minutes on a bike tour. In other words, the usual!
 

As always we like to close out the show with a special shoutout to the Pedalshift Society! Because of support from listeners like you, Pedalshift is a weekly bicycle touring podcast with a global community, expanding into live shows and covering new tours like this spring’s DC to Cincinnatti bike tour! If you like what you hear, you can support the show for 5 bucks, 2 bucks or even a buck a month. And there’s one-shot and annual options if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it all out at pedalshift.net/society.

Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Harry Telgadas
Chris Barron
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Stuart Buchan
Mr. T
Nathan Poulton
Stephen Dickerson
Vince LoGreco
Cody Floerchinger
Tom Benenati
Greg Braithwaite
Sandy Pizzio
Jeff Muster
Seth Pollack
Joseph Quinn
Drue Porter
Byron Paterson
Joachim Raber
Ray Jackson
Jeff Frey
Kenny Mikey
Lisa Hart
John Denkler
Steve Hankel
Miguel Quinones
Alejandro Avilés-Reyes
Keith Spangler
Greg Towner
Dan Gebhart, RIP
Jody Dzuranin
Lucas Barwick
Michael Baker
Brian Bechtol
Reinhart Bigl
Greg Middlemis
Connie Moore
William Gothmann
Brian Benton
Joan Churchill
Mike Bender
Rick Weinberg
Billy Crafton
Gary Matushak
Greg L’Etoile-Lopes
James Sloan
Jonathan Dillard
John Funk
Tom Bilcze
Ronald Piroli
Dave Roll
Brian Hafner
Misha LeBlanc
Ari Messinger
David Gratke
Todd Groesbeck
Wally Estrella
Sue Reinert
John Leko
Stephen Granata
Phillip Mueller
Robert Lackey
Dominic Carol
Jacqi McCulloch
John Hickman
Carl Presseault
David Neves
Patty Louise
Terry Fitzgerald
Peter Steinmetz
Timothy Fitzpatrick
Michael Liszewski
Hank O’Donnell
David Zanoni
David Weil

Music

You’ve been hearing about Jason Kent and his music for many fine episodes. Sunfields has a new album in 2021, AND Jason has a new solo album in 2021, AND his first solo album is now streaming on Spotify, including America, the Pedalshift theme. Go listen!

The post The Pedalshift Project 227: One Last Time on the C&O in 2020 appeared first on Pedalshift.

Creating a Policy Agenda

On this episode we take a look at the ways nonprofits can create a policy agenda to advance their missions. Now that the election is over, we have to begin looking forward to what’s ahead and what we want our local, state, and federal policymakers to consider in the coming year. 

Our attorneys this episode

  • Jen Powis
  • Shyaam
  • Natalie Ossenfort

Resources

 

The Pedalshift Project 226: Exploring eBike Touring

Every time I come across an eBike I wonder if you go touring on something like that? On this episode, I chat about my research on the topic!


The Pedalshift Project 226: Exploring eBike Touring

Hey it’s the direct download link for  The Pedalshift Project 226: Exploring eBike Touring (mp3).

Subscribe/Follow The Pedalshift Project:
RSSiTunes – Overcast – Android – Google Podcasts – StitcherTuneIn – IHeartRadio – Spotify

Reach out to the show via email, Twitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to join the newsletter too.

Have some bike touring or overnight stories to share? Send your pics, audio or a quick tweet – all welcome. Email the show at pedalshift@pedalshift.net or call the lightly-used Pedalshift voicemail line at (202) 930-1109

Gear Talk: Exploring eBike Touring 

First – I’m far from an expert on this. This picqued my interest in the spring of 2019 when I was riding the DC to Cinci route and I got SMOKED on the Ohio to Erie trail by a Mennonite kid on an ebike. You can cover some serious mileage with one of those! But can you tour?
 
Second – Is this “cheating”? No. Is it cheating to have better gears than the bike next to you? Gears at all? I say ride your ride. Also, this opens touring up to more people, which I’m all for.
 
Third – there’s been some legal and social pushback on ebikes in a lot of places. They are being categorized as mopeds under some state laws, and if you spend any time on social media, there are OPINIONS on this. They’re too fast, too dangerous… etc. It wasn’t until last summer that ebikes were allowed  on the C&O. 
 

Considerations

  • eBikes tend to be heavy, but are getting lighter all the time
  • You need to charge
  • Run out of juice, you’re cranking a much heavier bike
  • Range used to be too low for touring in that 60 mile/day range but battery tech and efficiency is getting a lot better
  • The batteries are too big to fly
  • Price – they can be pricey

Different types

  • Pedal assist
  • Throttle
  • Mid-Drive
  • Hub-Drive
  • There are even e-assist trailers that will give your bike a push
  • There are retrofit kits but those may not be robust enough for touring

Battery swaps

Europe seems to be working off of a standard sized battery and there’s a network of battery swaps at stores, pubs and other places (Switzerland seems to be great for this). Not a US thing, like at all.
 

Power

250w (Europe) up to ludicrous 750w (US). More power can get you, well, more… BUT it drains batteries faster. 250w is probably the best spot for touring because that gives the best range with assist power.
 

Batteries

Improving all the time. Key metric here is Watt hours (Wh). The higher the number the more range you’ll have. Multiply volts by Amp Hours and you can start comparing apples to apples for different voltage batteries (they vary from 12-48 volts across different ebike options)
 
Battery Strategy – carry a few, take at least one long break where you can charge one or more up
 

My take

I’m intrigued, maybe not in the near term, but definitely down the line as batteries get better and better
Helping with climbing and headwinds
#notcheating
 

Resources

 

As always we like to close out the show with a special shoutout to the Pedalshift Society! Because of support from listeners like you, Pedalshift is a weekly bicycle touring podcast with a global community, expanding into live shows and covering new tours like this spring’s DC to Cincinnatti bike tour! If you like what you hear, you can support the show for 5 bucks, 2 bucks or even a buck a month. And there’s one-shot and annual options if you’re not into the small monthly thing. Check it all out at pedalshift.net/society.

Kimberly Wilson
Caleb Jenkinson
Cameron Lien
Andrew MacGregor
Michael Hart
Keith Nagel
Brock Dittus
Thomas Skadow
Marco Lo
Terrance Manson
Harry Telgadas
Chris Barron
Mark Van Raam
Brad Hipwell
Stuart Buchan
Mr. T
Nathan Poulton
Stephen Dickerson
Vince LoGreco
Cody Floerchinger
Tom Benenati
Greg Braithwaite
Sandy Pizzio
Jeff Muster
Seth Pollack
Joseph Quinn
Drue Porter
Byron Paterson
Joachim Raber
Ray Jackson
Jeff Frey
Kenny Mikey
Lisa Hart
John Denkler
Steve Hankel
Miguel Quinones
Alejandro Avilés-Reyes
Keith Spangler
Greg Towner
Dan Gebhart, RIP
Jody Dzuranin
Lucas Barwick
Michael Baker
Brian Bechtol
Reinhart Bigl
Greg Middlemis
Connie Moore
William Gothmann
Brian Benton
Joan Churchill
Mike Bender
Rick Weinberg
Billy Crafton
Gary Matushak
Greg L’Etoile-Lopes
James Sloan
Jonathan Dillard
John Funk
Tom Bilcze
Ronald Piroli
Dave Roll
Brian Hafner
Misha LeBlanc
Ari Messinger
David Gratke
Todd Groesbeck
Wally Estrella
Sue Reinert
John Leko
Stephen Granata
Phillip Mueller
Robert Lackey
Dominic Carol
Jacqi McCulloch
John Hickman
Carl Presseault
David Neves
Patty Louise
Terry Fitzgerald
Peter Steinmetz
Timothy Fitzpatrick
Michael Liszewski
Hank O’Donnell
David Zanoni
David Weil

Music

You’ve been hearing about Jason Kent and his music for many fine episodes. Sunfields has a new album in 2021, AND Jason has a new solo album in 2021, AND his first solo album is now streaming on Spotify, including America, the Pedalshift theme. Go listen!

The post The Pedalshift Project 226: Exploring eBike Touring appeared first on Pedalshift.

Best of Pedalshift 112: Olympic Peninsula Brompton Tour – Part 2

In the second of a two-parter, my trusty Brompton and I continue our transit-aided bicycle tour from Washington, DC to Astoria, Oregon. This week features a more-challenging-than-expected short mileage day, a visit to Kurt Cobain’s riverfront hangout, and a long bridge serving as a finish line. Originally podcast March 29, 2018

Best of Pedalshift 112: Olympic Peninsula Brompton Tour – Part 2

The post Best of Pedalshift 112: Olympic Peninsula Brompton Tour – Part 2 appeared first on Pedalshift.