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Old 11-22-04, 10:42 AM   #1
slvoid
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Bike registration law cannon fodder?

Does anyone else think the new bike registration legislation that they're trying to cram in NYC is designed to be so ridiculous that it's distracting us from something else much more subtle that they're trying to put in to slowly erode away our freedom?
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Old 11-22-04, 12:41 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by slvoid
Does anyone else think the new bike registration legislation that they're trying to cram in NYC is designed to be so ridiculous that it's distracting us from something else much more subtle that they're trying to put in to slowly erode away our freedom?

Well, maybe not erode your freedom intentionally, but step by step and drip by drip thats the way it goes. As you know there is/was another thread about this, and on that thread I was (and remain somewhat) in favor of the idea of bicycle registration.

But of the many arguments against it, to me the most meaningful one was just the workability issue; it 'wouldn't work.' Registration works for cars not just because its needed, but because cars are expensive and the registration cost is a small part of it. For bikes this would not be the case, especially if your bike is a leftover clunker.

It probably would be best to first turn to the cycling 'community' (though i hate the word) to 'police itself' thru peer pressure from other riders. Failing that however, i think you will all be blindsided by the amount of support for bicycle registration.

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Old 11-22-04, 12:47 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by slvoid
Does anyone else think the new bike registration legislation that they're trying to cram in NYC is designed to be so ridiculous that it's distracting us from something else much more subtle that they're trying to put in to slowly erode away our freedom?
no
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Old 11-22-04, 12:57 PM   #4
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a law like this won't fly.

there are way too many bikes and bike riders that are just out for a day and have no clue about anything. who will be responsible for making sure the bike rider is registered, the stores that sell them? so toys-r-us, k-mart, wal-mart etc will have to train their employees or something.

around here we have a manditory helmet law but the police don't pull over every person they see without one on. they would spend all day doing that if they did, as there are WAY to many people on bikes.

I don't see it working...
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Old 11-22-04, 01:04 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by slvoid
Does anyone else think the new bike registration legislation that they're trying to cram in NYC is designed to be so ridiculous that it's distracting us from something else much more subtle that they're trying to put in to slowly erode away our freedom?
making people register their bikes, or some form of it is a lose of freedom. i cannot understand why people don't acknowlege this.

freedom to me doesn't entail filling out paper work, placing stickers or plates on my bike, and paying a yearly fee for the privledge of riding a bike. we already pay the highest taxes around, and are required to obey all the laws. that's enough.
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Old 11-22-04, 02:02 PM   #6
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All the bike registration law does is generate more revenue for the city. Less important is taking away freedoms. Besides, how much outcry would there be if cycling was banned (and it can't) in the City from busniesses who use messenger services? You know, the taxpayers that can't vote?

A bike liscense was attempted on Hilton Head Island, SC two years ago. HHI has massive numbers of POS rental bikes, around 4000. The town wanted to levy a $5 a year registration fee on all bike within the town limits. Several rental operaters, inculding myself, told the town conciul we would shut down and sell off our bikes to intrests out of town, thus costing the town almost $40,000 in busniess liscense revenue. The town accountant ran the numbers, and a bike liscense fee would create a net LOSS for the town if us rental operators shut down and removed the bikes.

I don't know if that would happen in NYC. Just let the City Concuil know what would happen if the busniesses had to resort to using cars instead of bikes to move documents and packages.
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Old 11-22-04, 02:15 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by DieselDan
All the bike registration law does is generate more revenue for the city. Less important is taking away freedoms. Besides, how much outcry would there be if cycling was .....
No it doesn't the fees they they charge will barely cover the expense of carrying out the program. It is not taking away your personal freedom(more hyperbole). I am not for this but I do have a question for you all. If everybody else who uses the road has to register their vehicles why not us?
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Old 11-22-04, 02:22 PM   #8
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Because everybody else who registers a vehicle has certain expectations of treatment.

In New York City a cyclist got doored the other day and killed by a double parked delivery van in Manhattan.

Number of summons issued for double parking? Zero.

Number of summons issued for the dooring? Zero.

Also, in my state at least, the only thing on the road that needs to be registered is a motor vehicle, hence the Department of Motor Vehicles. Notice that it's not the Department of All Vehicles Using the Road.
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Old 11-22-04, 02:23 PM   #9
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what about those of us that don't ride on the road, but ride on sidewalks and in parking lots?

also, I drive a car and pay taxes already. why should I have to pay again for each bike I own?
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Old 11-22-04, 02:29 PM   #10
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I also doubt this bill will make it past the Transportation Committee. As it currently reads, it just not clearly thought out and would be nearly impossible to enforce.

Even so, the major problem with the idea of bike registration is that it paves the way, so to speak, for liability insurance, inspections, and other restrictions, similar to how the goverment restricts those who drive cars. Ticketing bicycles for traffic violations would probably also become much more commonplace.

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Old 11-22-04, 02:36 PM   #11
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I have no problem with penalties handed out for reckless cycling. In fact, I'd prefer if they were because it shows we're willing to operate within the confines of the law.

What seems to be happening, however, is that cycling laws are abitrarily enforced when the police aren't making their quota. I don't ever ride with a bell or horn, for example. I have never gotten a ticket for it, and have even ridden along side cops who were amused that I was riding my bike as fast as they were patrolling.

Now, take my same bike on a CM ride without a horn or bell, and do you think the cops would ignore it?

That's the problem I have in a nutshell. It's not enforcement of the laws. I almost wish they would enforce the laws more and more evenly. I just don't see it happening. This "registration" law is just an excuse to throw some money into the city pocketbook. After the initial setup of this program, I can pretty much guarantee it'll turn a profit every year, an idea I'm sure the council hasn't forgotten.
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Old 11-22-04, 03:15 PM   #12
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I don't live in NYC so this issue doesn't have a direct impact on me, except that I read the intro for the proposed legislation and there is no mention what will be taken into account when I visit NYC for a cycling related event. Are they planning to arrest visitors that cycle?
Cars are required to be registered and drivers licensed no matter where you go so it hardly matter if you drive to NYC with your Texas plates n the car and your Texas DL. If they don't find a way to accomodate travelers and arrest folk....Well that could cost the city a whack of $$. Also I can't see cycling industry/advocates willing to hold conventions or other functions someplace that puts their patrons in such dilemma. So NYC could wave goodbye to a chunk of tourist/convention money too.

Please tell me someone has brought this up with council members other than the proposed legislations sponsors. Money will trump a busybody any day of the week in NYC I'm told.
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Old 11-22-04, 03:22 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by pnj
what about those of us that don't ride on the road, but ride on sidewalks and in parking lots?

also, I drive a car and pay taxes already. why should I have to pay again for each bike I own?
I know here(with the exception of the monorail tax, which does not go to roads) the car registration is not a tax it is a fee (there is a big differnece one is a revenus generator the other off sets the cost of the program)
What is being asked of you in NYC IS NOT A TAX IT IS A FEE (see above)

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In New York City a cyclist got doored the other day and killed by a double parked delivery van in Manhattan.

Number of summons issued for double parking? Zero.

Number of summons issued for the dooring? Zero.
Not an answer to my question just pointing out a problem with law enforcemnt

[/QUOTE]Also, in my state at least, the only thing on the road that needs to be registered is a motor vehicle, hence the Department of Motor Vehicles. Notice that it's not the Department of All Vehicles Using the Road.[QUOTE]

The law will change that, still not aqn answer to my question

If everybody else who uses the road has to register why not us?
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Old 11-22-04, 03:29 PM   #14
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Because every other vehicle that uses roads is motorized, does damage to the road, and has special rights on the road that bikes don't have.

There is no reason, for example, for someone who rides a full suspension mountain bike exclusively off road in various trails around the city to have to register his/her bike, because they don't even use the roads in the first place.

The "you use the road" excuse is complete bullsh!t. What's next? Pedestrians wearing license plates on their butts because, well hell, they use the sidewalks and they're publicly funded!

Or even better: Let's license Lark scooters and motorized wheelchairs...

It will never end...
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Old 11-22-04, 03:58 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by vincenzosi
Because every other vehicle that uses roads is motorized, does damage to the road, and has special rights on the road that bikes don't have.

There is no reason, for example, for someone who rides a full suspension mountain bike exclusively off road in various trails around the city to have to register his/her bike, because they don't even use the roads in the first place.

The "you use the road" excuse is complete bullsh!t. What's next? Pedestrians wearing license plates on their butts because, well hell, they use the sidewalks and they're publicly funded!

Or even better: Let's license Lark scooters and motorized wheelchairs...

It will never end...
But car registration is not a tax so that isn't valid. Use of the sidewalks is not in question here so don't try using unrealistic points to avoid answering a very fair and honest question.

Just what I thought no one can really answer that question. Playing the devils advocate here, we demand the same rights and responsibilities as cars yet we do not have to license ourselves or register our vehicles, and when asked we kick and scream about it. in reality we do not want the same responsibilities as vehicles.
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Old 11-22-04, 04:01 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by ngateguy
If everybody else who uses the road has to register why not us?
the simple answer is i don't want to. riding my bike is as natural to me as putting on a pair of shoes and going for a walk. i don't want to lose this freedom. it's one of the few things in my life that isn't regulated to death already, and i'm willing to fight to keep it this way. in an age where everything has a handbook of rules or regulations and committees surrounding it, i want somethings to be as simple as possible. nothing is as simple as picking up a bike and going for a ride worry free.

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Old 11-22-04, 04:20 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by ngateguy
But car registration is not a tax so that isn't valid. Use of the sidewalks is not in question here so don't try using unrealistic points to avoid answering a very fair and honest question.

Just what I thought no one can really answer that question. Playing the devils advocate here, we demand the same rights and responsibilities as cars yet we do not have to license ourselves or register our vehicles, and when asked we kick and scream about it. in reality we do not want the same responsibilities as vehicles.
Well, we just recently got rid of the tax we had here in California that went with registering our vehicles, but the local governments want it put back.
You're right, we don't want the same responsibilities as vehicles. I described a situation a couple of weeks ago where traffic was backed up for miles through the cities, and asked if those that say we should wait in line with the cars at traffic lights would have waited for hours in the cold, or ridden past the cars on the right side in an extra wide lane, where there was no bike lane. About two cars were getting through each green light, and traffic was backed up for over 7 miles. Side streets do not go all the way through. I didn't get any answers from the "same responsibilities" crowd on that one.
Also, putting a plate on the front and rear of my bike, just like a car, would pose a problem, as I really have no place to permanently mount one on either the rear or the front.
I wouldn't be against registering my bikes, but I can't see having to mount a license plate somewhere, since there's no place left after I put my saddle bag on.
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Old 11-22-04, 04:22 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by ngateguy
in reality we do not want the same responsibilities as vehicles.
i don't know about everyone else, but i don't want the same responsibilities as automobiles. i don't want licences, inspections, parking permits, etc.. (the whole host of things that go into owning a car) i just want to follow the rules as they are and have the police enforce them fairly. all the rules necessary are in place already. there is no reason why the police cannot stop a bike rider and give a summons or ticket if they do something wrong as things are now.
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Old 11-22-04, 04:30 PM   #19
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I hope they build that mono rail and then the earthquake hits and it falls over.
12 bucks they charge even though I didn't vote for it, nor will I ever use it.
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Old 11-22-04, 04:42 PM   #20
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Honestly, bike registration isn't that terrible, but having to affix a license plate to the back of my bike is. I can honestly see people getting arrested at CM because their license plate blocks their rear taillight. Even if arrests don't result, it's still unsafe because on most bikes it WILL block the taillight.

That said, even if they came up with a viable alternative I would be against it, if only because there are so many people who bike only occasionally who will probably give it up all together instead of dealing with the hassle of registration.
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Old 11-22-04, 04:47 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by ngateguy
If everybody else who uses the road has to register their vehicles why not us?

I don't mind answering if no one else will. Folks in the anti helmet law area say I ramble because I can't provide complex consideration with usable sound bites but ngateguy here wants to actually discuss the issue it would seem.

So, at the risk of rambling again, here is a short treatise on the first reason i can think of.

For the time being, and I say this because it could well be someday in the future that we will have to register and license ourselves to ride, But for the time being I think a valid reason for not allowing this legislation to pass would be the negative impact on the poor and immigrant class. For a similar reason most large metropolitan areas don't allow local police to involve themselves in immigration issues. These people need access to police and police need access to them. These same people need affordable personal transportation to facilitate their ability to access their workplace and generally get around. There are already laws on the books that will allow police to take someone off the road if they present a danger to themselves or others. This applies to the poor as well. As the situation stands ridership in this class would likely be drastically reduced if license and registration were required. After all, being shy of bureaucracy is a hallmark of many segments of poor, working class and immigrant communities. Why would this licensing trouble do anything but convince them they'll be better off scrimping together a $1000 dollars and buying an unsafe gas powered vehicle if they're already going to have to go wait in line at the DMV and tolerate such scary scrutiny?

After all, not all of us ride for fun and games.

When ridership decreases, accident rates go up as drivers become less accustomed to having bikes on the road. I'm not going to trouble you with figures on this. If you really want to see this in action, ride in a bike-friendly community for a stretch and then a non-bike friendly community.

When accidents become more commonplace sometimes people begin to accept it as the norm, fear sets in and ridership decreases further. Cities slash budgets for cycling related improvements and events. Ridership decreases further, bicycles are so uncommon that every tenth car an idiot shouts at you because you stick out like a sore thumb and the next day you wake up to find that instead of a city with a cycling community on the edge of becoming a viable transportation alternative hailed by all as a traffic/pollution reducing benefit to cyclists and non cyclists alike, instead you wake up and find yourself in Houston.



I also believe it'd be a bureaucratic boondoggle, which would further prevent new cyclists from joining our ranks.

Some laws that appear to a few as anti-cycling such as bells, reflectors, helmets and other safety equipment help work toward the legitimization of cycling by providing standards of behavior and personal responsibility when cycling. This isn't one of them. Someday perhaps, but not yet.

First we need more riders. If our numbers grow and the (I believe) exaggerated problems that this proposed legislation claims to address grow exponentially with ridership, then someday. I think that as ridership grows and becomes more commonplace the supposed problems will remain the same or diminish making such things unnecessary. Isn't that how it's worked out across the puddle in a few spots?
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Old 11-22-04, 04:55 PM   #22
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Also, in my state at least, the only thing on the road that needs to be registered is a motor vehicle, hence the Department of Motor Vehicles. Notice that it's not the Department of All Vehicles Using the Road.
My State too, but don't forget about local ordinances (State Licence pays for State Roads, Local for local roads).


Quote:
Provenzano foresees a registration fee of about $25 or less with the city Department of Transportation
Quote:
The "you use the road" excuse is complete bullsh!t.

How about "aduse" the road.


Quote:
The bill, introduced by City Councilwoman Madeline Provenzano, calls for fines up to $300 and up to 15 days in jail for anyone over 16 years old who rides an unregistered bike or flouts traffic laws.
http://www.newsday.com/news/local/ne...news-headlines

Quote:
Provenzano, a Democrat, said she received complaints about bicyclists.

"They zigzag in and out of traffic, they're on the sidewalk, they're a danger to senior citizens," she said.

http://www.nynewsday.com/news/local/...eadlines-trans


Although not a done deal, the topic is nearly moot, and the Councl Woman wins points from the seniors.


Quote:
The bill would have to pass through the council's transportation committee chaired by Councilman John Liu (D-Flushing) before it goes for a full council vote.

Asked about the bill's chances yesterday, Liu offered a less-than diplomatic response.

"When I was a kid, I had a license plate on my bike," Liu said. "I'm trying to remember which cereal box I got it from."


This is a story of playing politics, not about what is best for a community. A real waste of time and resources for all involved.
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Old 11-22-04, 05:31 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by ngateguy
But car registration is not a tax so that isn't valid. Use of the sidewalks is not in question here so don't try using unrealistic points to avoid answering a very fair and honest question.

Just what I thought no one can really answer that question. Playing the devils advocate here, we demand the same rights and responsibilities as cars yet we do not have to license ourselves or register our vehicles, and when asked we kick and scream about it. in reality we do not want the same responsibilities as vehicles.
You know what? If you don't like my points, fine, but don't say they're not valid. Sidewalks aren't the only point I made, and in some neighborhoods in this city, those scooters are on the streets because there are no sidewalks, such as parts of Staten Island. My other points (bikes aren't motor vehicles, and not all bikes are ridden on roads) are 100% valid. Don't like 'em? Fine with me. I honestly can't remember ever demanding the same responsibilities as drivers.

There's no reason someone should have to register a bike to ride it on a trail. There's no reason someone should have to register a bike period.

We would like the same rights. Unfortunately we don't get them, and now we're being asked to fork over a registration fee for not having the privilege. I'd love the same rights. I'd love the same responsibilities. I'd also love the same treatment. Nothing indicates that registering bikes would do anything to improve the treatment of cyclists in this city.

No one has answered that point either.

The next step is licensing bike riders, and then bike insurance after registering because people like Ngateguy want the same responsibilities as drivers. You should work for Councilmember Provenzano.
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Old 11-22-04, 06:29 PM   #24
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"If everybody else who uses the road has to register why not us?"

you're making the false assumption that "everyone else" who uses public rights-of-way are "registered" by some governmental entity...

Pedestrians are users of the road, and are not "registered"

horse drivers (a term for that??) (such as the Amish in PA, & OH) do not have to register their buggies or their horses, nor are they taxed

bicycles are not registered by any State DMV

donkeys aren't eligable....

you may make the false assumption that "everyone has a drivers licence, so they're registered anyway". No, a DRIVERS LICENCE enables you to OPERATE A *MOTOR* VEHICLE. That is all. No more, no less.

Before the advent of motor vehicles, there WERE NO "drivers licences" or "registration" , though I suppose you could get insurance on your horses.
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Old 11-22-04, 08:48 PM   #25
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Only form of registration I wouldnt mind is if every brand new bike or refurbished bike sold through a shop was required to be registered, and registration was a one time fee. Upon selling of the bike, there would be a fee to the new owner for transfer of registration.

This would be good for dealing with abandoned bikes, recovered bikes,lost bikes (I left mine on the train) etc. However it should not be a license plate, instead it could a metal tag that goes somewhere on the bike (preferably a rather out of the way spot)
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