Members of the Austin City Council have stated that they are uncomfortable with the early launch of electric scooters, and they are looking for new permits and laws to be enacted.
Currently, the council is expected to officially consider an ordinance that would make city law address the decisions made by the companies that are providing the scooters. A pilot program was initially expected to launch this coming summer; however, the companies instead jumped the gun and began to provide them early.
If the ordinance were to pass, then the pilot program involving the scooters would be placed on the shelf, and a permit-based program would instead be implemented beginning on May 1.
There were some scooters that were impounded by the Austin Transportation Department in the first week that they were introduced; however, they were quickly returned without having fines imposed on the companies. This is because the existing ordinances didn’t make it clear enough that operations involving rentals couldn’t take place on streets and sidewalks owned by the city.
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