A Bird scooter sits parked on a street corner in San Francisco. Dockless scooters have become very popular across the U.S., but many people say they're a nuisance. A Bird scooter sits parked on a street corner in San Francisco. Dockless scooters have become very popular across the U.S., but many people say they're a nuisance. Over the past year, dockless electric scooters have descended on city sidewalks almost as if they fell from the sky.
Bird Rides Inc., which operated an estimated 500 scooters before removing them last week, would pay about $197,500 annually if it returns with the same number of scooters. LimeBike, which had about 300 scooters in Indianapolis, would pay about $124,500 if it brings back the same number. Both companies charge users $1 per ride, plus 15 cents per minute.
City officials say state law makes the scooters illegal. But the Milwaukee Common Council did not ban the scooters with the ordinance given approval Tuesday. Instead, the Journal Sentinel reports the measure would allow the city to impound scooters when they're parked on sidewalks and Bird Rides Inc. would need to pay $100 to recover them. Riders would not be fined.
But some city commissioners are now reconsidering the ban. Instead, they've proposed new rules that would require rental shops to equip motorized scooters, mopeds and motorized bicycles with GPS tracking devices and set up a 24/7 hotline for police and code compliance officers to report misbehaving scooter drivers. Scooter shops would have to show their phone number on the vehicles, which are already required to display the name of the rental shop and an ID number.