Why penalize cyclists?

Politicians trying to tax bicycles are just spinning their wheels

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A Chicago city councilwoman is sniffing around for something else to tax, and she has selected bicycles. Since Chicago is becoming increasingly cycling-friendly, she has proposed a $25 annual tax on cyclists to kick in money to help pay for the city’s costs of accommodating people who rely on pedal power – such as keeping roads repaired, and running mini-snowplows solely to clear bike paths.

We would encourage her to examine Georgia to see how a similar proposal was received this year.

House Bill 689 languished in the Georgia General Assembly’s House hopper in 2013. The bill called for all cyclists to pay a $15 registration fee, or face a misdemeanor charge and a $100 fine. It also limited the number of cyclists who can ride in a group, and empowered cities to ban cyclists from any roads they chose.

No wonder the bill didn’t advance. Not only did the bill put unnecessary binders on cyclists’ freedom, but how many lawmakers are going to vote for a bill that dumps yet another fee on Georgians? With an election year coming up?

Besides, most cyclists will tell you that they already pay taxes for road upkeep, because they also own motor vehicles. Also, what police officer is going to slap a $100 fine on a kid on training wheels trying to learn to ride his bike on the road in front of his house?

The three Gainesville lawmakers who cosponsored the bill got a three-hour-long earful from irate cyclists at a public hearing about the bill in October. The legislators then said they would withdraw the bill.

Why on Earth would you charge people for creating less pollution and living healthier lives?

Comments (14) Add comment
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Riverman1
84914
Points
Riverman1 12/28/13 - 08:06 am
5
4
One of the main reasons for

One of the main reasons for registering bikes is to aid in recovering those that are stolen.

myfather15
55725
Points
myfather15 12/28/13 - 06:45 am
9
3
River

We don't need the government charging us, just another fee, to assist in recovering a bicycle!!

It basically falls into the category of home burglaries and PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. If you don't write down and record the make, model and serial numbers of YOUR belongings; when you do report them as stolen, the chances are slim at best, at ever finding them. People need to inventory and record their belongings. So, you don't need to register it. We just need the make, model and SN and it can still be entered into GCIC/NCIC as stolen.

We do NOT need just another government regulation, in the aspect of helping us be "safe". This should fall on the indiviudual!!! If you don't record the make, model and serial number of your bicycle, then don't expect a easy recovery, because those are how we identify which bikes is YOURS!!

Government stay OUT, people be responsible for YOURSELF!!

soldout
1280
Points
soldout 12/28/13 - 07:58 am
11
1
I don't understand bike paths not being used

Why do people ride bikes on the streets when a bike path runs along the road beside them such as Evans to Locks Rd. Not everyone does but some do and it just seems dumb to compete with cars on the road and avoid the path five feet away.

soapy_725
43686
Points
soapy_725 12/28/13 - 08:07 am
0
0
The same "look at me" people who jog in the road when paths
Unpublished

are provided and maintained.

soapy_725
43686
Points
soapy_725 12/28/13 - 08:09 am
0
0
In your face, my rights, I'll run or ride where ever I please.
Unpublished

In your face, my rights, I'll run or ride where ever I please.

SJL1204
188
Points
SJL1204 12/28/13 - 09:14 am
5
2
The police have better things to do

I have the image of the police pulling over cyclists and asking for their registration. Really ! I think there are more important crimes to address.

ymnbde
9901
Points
ymnbde 12/28/13 - 09:28 am
6
1
some roads are simply not safe for the bicyclist and car combo

Washington Road has a natural bicycle ban due to simple common sense of the cyclist
But on roads such as Old Evans in Columbia County,
where traffic is limited to the speed of the bicycle because the road is too narrow and curvy to pass and traffic can be dense
and sense may not be so common
bicycles should be banned
it isn't safe for cycle nor car, no matter how many laws are written

Bodhisattva
6307
Points
Bodhisattva 12/28/13 - 09:37 am
6
2
Penalize?

Do you use the same term for cars, trucks, motorcycles, mopeds, scooters, etc., that have to have a tag and pay a tax? Cyclists are just as capable of breaking traffic laws as operators of other vehicles. A license plate would allow identification of the offender. They are also utilizing the roadway which requires upkeep. If nothing else, use the funds to build additional bike paths to keep them off busy and dangerous roads. How about a minimum speed limit on major highways? I remember South Carolina used to have these on some roads. If you can't keep up with the minimum, you have to take a different route. Pedal faster.

GiantsAllDay
9695
Points
GiantsAllDay 12/28/13 - 09:49 am
6
0
I'm glad to see this attitude

I'm glad to see this attitude by ACES. Also, MF15 gives good advice. Record make, model and SN of all your belongings of any real value. I would like to add that you should also take a digital picture as well. The insurance claim will be smoother and chances of recovery by the police will increase.

jimmymac
41191
Points
jimmymac 12/28/13 - 11:06 am
1
0
BIKES
Unpublished

All car owners pay road taxes for their upkeep. Why should bike riders get a free pass? They should pay for the upkeep just like everyone else and have to follow the same traffic laws.

daphne3520
950
Points
daphne3520 12/28/13 - 12:56 pm
0
0
Because the vast majority of bicyclists
Unpublished

think the OWN the road! Especially in North Augusta on West Five Notch Road!!!!!

Little Lamb
46399
Points
Little Lamb 12/28/13 - 01:39 pm
5
1
Editorial

With some caveats, this is a thoughtful editorial. But there is at least one absurdity in it:

(H)ow many lawmakers are going to vote for a bill that dumps yet another fee on Georgians? With an election year coming up?

In the first place, there is always an election year coming up. In the second place, you would be surprised how many lawmakers will vote for bills that dump fees on citizens. We've got stormwater fees coming up, street sweeping fees coming up. Elections don't stop Richmond County commissioners. They don't stop state legislators, either.

2014 would be a good year to send control of the U.S. Senate back to the Republican Party. We can dream, can't we?

harley_52
23631
Points
harley_52 12/28/13 - 04:53 pm
3
1
Dixieman @ 8:25 AM

Priceless....

CobaltGeorge
160845
Points
CobaltGeorge 12/28/13 - 05:08 pm
1
1
"We Can Dream, Can't We?

It better be damn more than a Dream for our future!

nocnoc
43436
Points
nocnoc 12/28/13 - 08:17 pm
1
0
Why not require a fee

If they use the Roads and we have to provide Bike Lanes, signs and special stripping they should be responsible for their share of the added expense.
$15 is cheap for what they get.

However, the Fee should be restricted and required only for 18 and up. Those using NON-Community roads (main roads, highways etc..)
not local community streets.

Darby
26034
Points
Darby 12/29/13 - 12:57 pm
2
0
"2014 would be a good year to send control of the U.S. Senate

back to the Republican Party. We can dream, can't we?

.
It need not be a dream, save the total inability of conservatives to work for common cause. Once a candidate is selected, liberals, progressives, unions, "greenies", pro-choice radicals, global warming fanatics, et al will still turn out in force to support the person with the "D" behind his/her name.

You don't see that kind of political loyalty and fanaticism among too many conservatives. Most are inclined to say something stupid such as "I'd rather see a Democrat elected than vote against my principles."

Each conservative group truly believes that the entire Republican voting block is going to, one day, see it "their" way and then "we" can have it all.

At this point, the Democrats have given the Congress to Republicans in the election just a little over ten months away. Let's see how good a job we can do of throwing it away.

john
1000
Points
john 12/29/13 - 11:01 pm
3
0
dixie...

I think you would be surprised at the political leanings of cyclists. Some are liberals, some are conservatives. Most don't feel entitled and try and hog the road. They just want to exercise and enjoy being outdoors. We live in a beautiful area.

mosovich
809
Points
mosovich 12/29/13 - 11:54 pm
1
0
Amen..

amen John.. We do live in a beautiful area for the most part.. Of course most people are driving to crazy and not paying attention to even notice it..

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