Urging Legalization of E-Bikes

Delivery workers, such as Jinhua Li, coalesced in Corona Plaza to support a new state bill on e-bikes and scooters which they claim will counteract city policies viewed as discriminatory. (Photo: Mark Hallum via QNS)

On May 3, at a press conference promoting a bill that would legalize the use of e-bikes, Mengba Lee and Eduardo Perez-Torres spoke of their need as delivery workers for the mode of transportation. They claimed to be “unfairly targeted by law enforcement under the de Blasio administration over the use of e-bikes,” writes Mark Hallum for QNS. State Sen. Jessica Ramos and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic, who represent districts with a large number of Latino and Asian residents, introduced the bill last week.

“In the past year and a half, the police have issued me four e-bike tickets at $500 each,” Lee said through a translator. “Which means I have paid $2,000 in fines. The police also confiscated my e-bike once which made me miss a lot of work. Delivery workers don’t understand why the government has such a law to punish us when we are just trying to delivery food that people order.”

Perez-Torres’ experience does not fall far from this, he said, but when his bike was confiscated there was only more hardship.

In order to get his bike back, he was forced to shell out over $900. But upon leaving the bank, he was robbed by an individual pretending to be a cop.

He faced another ordeal when he received his bike back more than a month later. Read more at QNS, including what the bill stipulates, why one advocate calls de Blasio’s policy “draconian” and where New York State stands compared to other states when it comes to motorized bikes.

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