New York Bike Law Could Mean Mandatory Licenses and Insurance For the Whole State

20110124_ppbike.jpg
This afternoon, Gothamist points us to a proposal by assemblyman Michael DenDekker, a Democrat from Queens, which would require by law that every bicycle -- not just in New York City, but in New York state -- have a license plate, to be re-registered every year only after an inspection of the bike. A second bill, also in the works, would make it so every rider must be insured and carry identification. The enforcement would mean about $1,875,000 for New York, plus $375,000 every additional year in fees. But that's not the point, lawmakers insist.

The first bill would work on "ensuring personal protection for cases such as bicycle theft or bicycle accidents. With a recent high increase in bike use on roads, rising from 30% in 1980, and doubling to 60% just ten years later, it is essential that the state of New York be able to identify the bicycle riders." To that end, requirements would include:

"the annual registration of personal bicycles and provides for a license plate fee of twenty-five dollars for the first year and five dollars for every year thereafter." To get the license plate, cyclists would need to get their bicycles inspected to make sure they "conform to the lamp and equipment requirements."

As for the insurance part, that would "be beneficial for small businesses to have liability insurance because the insurance would pay for any medical bills, instead of having the payment come directly from the pockets of the business."

The laws also protect against the reckless riders, such that "if the rider strikes a pedestrian while in the course of their duty, the victim will straightforwardly be able to write down the license plate and so that insurance will be in place to compensate for any hospital bills."

The bills are available to read in full here and here, in addition to more from Gothamist. If this enrages any cyclists out there, perhaps go the Steve Cuozzo route.

[jcoscarelli@villagevoice.com / @joecoscarelli]



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150 comments
username
username

Not ha ha ha when you hit someone and there are injuries. The cyclist may incur injuries as well. There is an immense problem at the moment with many riders not wearing helmets, riding at night without lights in dark clothing, racing and running lights. All is well in this chaos until something happens. If a cyclist hits someone who is well off enough to hire a good lawyer, that rider will be paying for the rest of his life.

WilliamF
WilliamF

Leave it to a democrat to try to solve a problem that doesn't exist.

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WindDancer
WindDancer

Another example of a nation that lost insight of what is truly importnant. If he wants to make it volunatary then I am all for it.

Get.out.of.the.street.peds!
Get.out.of.the.street.peds!

This is all being done so the city can recover all the $$ it's not getting from cyclist who don't use public trans or drive! They have to come up with some lame excuse to try to trick stupid people into thinking it's for "safety"! It is all a retarded crock of shit! Its all for the $$!

Richard Russell
Richard Russell

I have an idea. Instead of vehicles and bicycles having license plates, why doesn't the government just issue everyone a set of clothing with a license number inked onto it, and tattoo a barcode on our foreheads? 

Rk610moto
Rk610moto

Are you out of your ------- mind? Your Government hard at work for you. NOT!

Simo28
Simo28

Being a road cyclist, and cycling for fittness(fun). I don't want that bull shit on my bike. Don't I pay enough insurance to drive my car? Now NYS wants more money from us, to ride a bike?This is insanity. These may be the last days of our Union. The Socialist have taken everything. I am sorry life is not fair. "Don't tread on me"

 bike accidents
bike accidents

Claiming compensation for bike accidents is done through the Injuries Board Ireland – the same way as any personal injuries claim.

Blat
Blat

How can you call your self healthy NY when everything that has ever been in the better good of the people you have tried to either stop it from reaching the people completely or by slapping a ridiculous fee with a tax on it. This state says one thing then does the complete opposite of what they tell the people. If you want a healthy NY then why would you try to tell NY to quit smoking with all you anti smoking laws and ad campaigns for NY quits and then when a alternative to smoking comes out you go and put a ban on E-CIGs and why would you promote obesity by taking away one of the largest forms of exercise from the people and making them pay for it because that's what this bill will do. Yet again NY says they care about its residences but here they are again trying to hurt us and then make us pay them for it as if they have really done something good for us. This is a BS law and the people need to stand up for themselves and tell people like Michael DenDekker, No to his crackpot laws. Does this law stop bicycle accidents from happening? No. It will be as effective as the laws against murder which even though they are in place murder happens everyday, it just gives NY a way to make money off of it now. The only thing that it will change is how much cash goes into their pockets while we the innocent hard working patriotic new yorkers are left with their BS law and with the fee.

4saferide
4saferide

Last week I saw a runner and a cyclist (separate cases.) Both were in heavy traffic trying to beat cars ahead of the crosswalk going against traffic. They wouldn't have been caught on camera at a light because they weren't at the crosswalk. We brought this on ourselves.

Ivan D
Ivan D

That should reverse the trend of increasing cycle use in the same way that compulsory helmets did in other parts of the world. I guess "the land of the free" is no longer a remotely valid concept in NYC. Revolution anyone?

DaveAtherton20
DaveAtherton20

Smoking bans today, cycling tomorrow welcome to Bloomberg's Brave New World. Someone ought to tell him George Orwell's 1984 was a warning not an instruction manual.

Jon
Jon

This has to be the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. We should be doing everything we can to increase the number of bicycles on the roads. The use of bikes has huge impact in decreasing the use of fossil fuels which are a big issue in every big city, not to mention the health benefits.

article1314
article1314

Bilradioen installasjon tilbehør består av sele adaptere leder, fascia adaptere, forfølge / rattet adaptere (også kjent som SMART leder) og antenne adapters.One eller flere av de ovennevnte adaptere kan være nødvendig når du installerer en in-dash CD eller MP3-spiller eller en komplett CD-veksler pakken mbt sko.

Julian
Julian

License for bicycle but none for guns or 30 round clips....Hmmmm.

I have a horse and have no idea where the license would be attached to her.

S_Anderson
S_Anderson

HORSE SHIT - let's make sure those who can't afford cars or public transportation are unable to ride bikes too....

Xkingksme
Xkingksme

what's next? implant pedometers on walkers so that NYS can tax us? dumbest scam job yet...the spin job is so lame that even a 3rd grader is rolling his eyes!!!!

JB
JB

If anything something like this should be voluntary for bike riders. It's ridiculous. Bike riders should b be rewarded. I don't even own a bike currently(yet) but I have great respect for bike riders. Think of how kind they are to mother nature.

Billybrandel
Billybrandel

This is the dumbest fucking thing Ive ever seen in my entire life fuck you Michael DenDekker. Suck my fucking cock u piece of shit. what a dumb fucking idea. i refuse to ever pay a dollar to ride my bike, u probally came up with this fucking idea because ur too fucking fat to ride and just sit inside ur fucking office all day sucking cock u stupid piece of shit. FUCK YOU i will fight this all day everyday ... wow im extremelly offended if this passes people are fucking dumber then i thought which i already think everyone is a fucking idiot...

Nospam
Nospam

heh. no way will this ever pass. it's funny to see all of the ruffled panties over it though.

rdgf
rdgf

Great time to introduce such an awesome idea, I mean it's not like we have any other major pressing issues we have to deal with in NY right now. Would this also be a good time to talk about making it illegal for little kids to fly paper air plains in outdoor public areas?

Guest
Guest

Doesn't this just discourage physical fitness and alternative transportation methods?! Dumbasses

Chomper
Chomper

i am a finely tuned bike machine...i hope they pass this bill so they get a nice look at my sweaty ass/unlicensed bike in the process of chasing me down for a $20 fine

Mmmmmmmmmmpie
Mmmmmmmmmmpie

so now if you wanna buy your 12 year old a bike so he can play outside in summer, you have to pay fees, and get him insurance, and get him a license, and have him finger printed, and hire a lawyer in case he hits someone.

Dingo
Dingo

what if your have multiple bikes, i have 3 or 4 i ride regulary, no way in hell im paying for each one...no way in hell im paying for a single one in that matter haha this place is crazy

Mike
Mike

The article is very poorly written and does not accurately describe the bill. If you actually read the bill, it states. "Commercial bicycles shall be issued a license plate upon passing an inspection by the department of motor vehicles." and commercial is defined as "Commercial bicycles which are used solely for business...." The author clearly wants the reader to assume that every bike in New York State from your Mother’s old Huffy down to little Mary’s tricycle will have to be registered and plated. This is not the case. The bill clearly refers to bicycles used for business e.g. couriers. Anybody who has spent time in New York City will attest to the potential hazards of these modern day pony express riders. Perhaps, if there is data to support it, there have been many times a person has been injured and the rider left. The main point I bring up is that the bill should be judged on its merits or lack thereof not on a poorly written distorted opinion. This type of article discredits the author and the publisher.

that boomerang boy
that boomerang boy

I get drunk on my bike all the time during the summer..i never hit anyone or hit a car(came close) but i never did..i live in buffalo, have a 1000 doller bike and rarely cause shanagins..this is going to be a hard law to enforce, i doubt there gonna send the bike police after anyone, only thing i see happening is maybe getting fined for not having one if you get in to an accident or something...DRINK BEER RIDE BIKES!

Texas Kid
Texas Kid

I think New York and New Yorkers deserve to have this law.

Clearwater Florida  HAHA
Clearwater Florida HAHA

HA HA HA HA HA HA

New Yorkers are going to pay insurance

for a BICYCLE

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

To Funny

Ken2234
Ken2234

I love how the law makers try to justify their insane laws. Keep pissing the people of albany and you'll get yours soon.

Joffbaum
Joffbaum

Folks. before getting mad read the bills and learn.

First, the number of bicycles on the road has increased from 30% to 60% in just 10 years. This translates into increased use of public infrastructure and increased accidents. Under such circumstances it is understandable that these vehicles should be registered.

Second, an annual inspection and a registration fee of $5.00/year is not too much to ask for. And it would generate much needed revenue for the state. Currently NYS is in the midst of a financial crisis and there is not much more that can be cut from the budget. In addition, annual inspections and registration plates would make things safer, both for the cyclists, for operators of motor vehicles and, for pedestrians. It would make it much easier for police to track reckless cyclists and/or hit and run cyclists.

Last, the requirement for insurance and carrying id would ONLY apply to commercial bike users such as couriers, delivery services, etc. personal, private cyclists would be exempt from insurance requirements.

These proposals actually make a lot of sense when you taake the time to read them and analyze the things they accomplish.

Asymptote
Asymptote

It would be cheaper to just make it legal to shoot cyclists. More honest too.

actor212
actor212

As an avid cyclist, I am for the most part opposed to this idea. I find the annual inspection to be absolutelty asinine as any safety "issues" would probably center around the brakes and apart from some morons, who the hell would ride around with squealing, bad brakes?

And the morons wouldn't bother fixing them under penalty of a fine anyway, so....

But the idea of a license plate is not such a bad one. If a pedestrian gets hit by a cyclist, there ought to be some accountability than waiting for the jerk to make a return trip.

Skibedford
Skibedford

joe coscarelli is the jack off who wrote this article, trying to instill fear in the hearts of Gothams beloved community. joe please report more honestly from now on or do your homework...ya douche.

Cshirk1
Cshirk1

Those little monsters have had it too easy for far too long.

Sasquatch
Sasquatch

I thought it might be something like that when at the end of the article it was talking about businesses and medical expenses. Truly awesome crappy writing. Way to communicate who what when and where fellas.

Joffbaum
Joffbaum

".DRINK BEER RIDE BIKES!"

Sounds like you are advocating for the bike licenses.

Joffbaum
Joffbaum

The insurance would be required only for commercial users. It would not apply to private bike owners.

Cstratig
Cstratig

First, the percentage has gone up from 30% to 60%. What does that mean? How many bikes does that mean? Are we talking 100 or 5,000? Sure, it translates to increased use of the roadways, but how much? The "statistics" given mean absolutely nothing out of context.

Second, $5.00/year is too much to ask for when you consider what the people are getting back - nothing. Additionally, this tax is targetted at bikers only. If the state needs money that desperately wouldn't it be more fair to simply increase taxes? Ah yes, that's unpopular. It's more "proactive" to target a smaller group, demonize them, then tax them. By the way, bicyclists are more often the victims of hit and runs than the perpetrators.

Last, businesses are already covered by a myriads of insurance policies that cover commercial bicycle use. Their workman's comp, general liability and and umbrella policies are just three of the policies that would share overlapping liability for any claims...

These proposals make less sense than you do.

Sasquatch
Sasquatch

After all, they have money to spend now unlike when we were kids. Hmmmm....

Joffbaum
Joffbaum

I would suggest you take a deep breath. Read the bills carefully. And think about them. once you get past the knee jerk reaction I think you'll find the bills do make sense. You'll also find the answer to at least two of the questions you asked. Very often when we react to something we are biased by our own sense of "the way things are" or "the way we think they ought to be". This of course does not mean that you have to be in favor of these bills. But at least you'll have an opinion grounded in fact.. However, if its any concession to you, in all likelihood these proposals will go nowhere.

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