It has been a bit of a summer hiatus for the Scooter Subcommittee as members’ summer vacations have prevented our normal meetings. Nevertheless, progress was made with two new public service announcements (PSAs) being developed for the changeable message signs within the Theater District. Both PSAs focus on the theme of using assigned scooter lanes, not sidewalks, for the safety for pedestrians and pets.
The subcommittee will meet again at the Spire on Tuesday, August 1, at 4:00 PM. We hope to have a presentation from the City’s Department of Transportation & Infrastructure (DOTI) efforts and plans for new protected bike lanes, bus lanes and sidewalk improvements the downtown area. We will also discuss our continued efforts including how best to support DOTI in their efforts to add bicycle and scooter lanes, ways we might measure the effectiveness of PSAs, and whether enforcement of laws against riding scooters on sidewalks can be an effective deterrence.
Shelly Oren (City Council Aide to Chris Hines) was successful in clarifying possible fines for riding scooters on the sidewalk. According to the City Attorney’s office, “Pursuant to D.R.M.C. § 54-821(b), the penalty for those violations would be at least $30, with the maximum fine being $999.” While we understand there is reluctance for police or parking enforcement personnel to enforce the rule against riding e-scooters and bicycles on sidewalks, having this information opens up several avenues for the Subcommittee to pursue:
- Adding the fine information to PSAs
- Encouraging selective enforcement in high violation areas
- Getting the information out on social media: “Did you know you can be fined…”
- Getting this information posted on scooters and at scooter corrals