Bike and scooter sharing programs now need a permit from the City Manager in order to operate inside Hillsboro, but city staff will not be issuing permits for a year or so.

The permitting ordinance passed second reading during the August 9 city council meeting, meaning it’s in effect now. ¬†Andrew Bartlett, Management Analyst for the city, stated in a memo to city councillors that it will take between 12 and 15 months for city officials to design a policy.¬†The memo was quick to call bicycle sharing programs a net benefit, but pointed out potential reasons for regulation:

As bike sharing programs have rolled out in other communities some common drawbacks are added clutter on sidewalks which can create safety concerns due to blocked sidewalks and streets. Bicycles can be vandalized which could make them unsafe to ride. Also bicycles can also be abandoned in natural areas or on private property. Due to these concerns many cities require bike sharing programs to be licensed and have adopted regulations to lessen the impacts of bike sharing programs.

The memo, and the city council agenda, only mention bicycle sharing programs, but the ordinance itself specifies that “bicycle, motorized scooter, e-bike or similar transportation devices” are all included under the permitting scheme.

Employer-run programs not open to the general public are not regulated under this ordinance.

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