WeHo cracks the whip on Bird and Lime

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West Hollywood is telling Bird and Lime to clean up the mess their electric rental scooters are making in the city — or pay up.

A draft revision to the contract the city has with its two vendors holds them much more responsible for the actions of their riders, which have stoked much anger among pedestrians, disabled people and automobile drivers in the community. 

Under the terms, each instance of sidewalk riding and illegal parking would incur an immediate fine to be paid directly to the city by Bird and Lime — potentially tens of thousands of dollars in new revenue for WeHo, based on violations in FY 2021-2022. 

The huge financial liability puts the onus of correcting rider behavior onto the companies rather than the city. Along with having to remove and re-station their illegally parked scooters, Bird and Lime will be forced to police their own customers or stick them with the extra charges at the risk of losing them.

But it’s not yet a done deal. 

Bird reviewed the draft contract and replied with some gently worded but sweeping recommendations for WeHo’s Transportation Commission to consider making to City Council, including:

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●  imposing noncompliance fines only when violations have been reported or when Bird has not responded to issues that have been reported for longer than two hours. Under the new contract, the vendors would have to pay $20 per service request, or $450 for an issue that violates ADA standards. For riders who improperly park their scooters, the vendors would be charged $10, $20 and $40 for the first, second and third violations, after which they are expected to ban the rider for 30 days.

●  increasing the scooter speed limit from 10 mph, which City Council requested, to 12 mph, to stay uniform with Los Angeles’ limit and to discourage sidewalk riding, which research suggests slower speeds actually encourage, according to Bird.

●  reducing the program fee to $10,000-$15,000, which Bird says is what other cities pay.  The current fee is $20,000 annually, and West Hollywood’s draft contract raises it to $25,000 per year.

Bird is also asking the city to charge its “per trip” fee only for rides that begin and end within WeHo, and to knock two hours off its service period of 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

City Hall obviously sees an opportunity for a financial windfall in its negotiations with the scooter providers. The revised contracts would have netted just under $200,000 had they been in place for fiscal years 21-22 and 22-23, according to the city’s calculations.

 

 

 

 

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Josh
Josh
8 months ago

Im for just outright banning all the scooters at this point. It’s all crazy people coming in from other parts of the city plowing people over on the sidewalks and causing all kinds of ruckus. None of them follow any of the rules.

GET TOUGH
GET TOUGH
8 months ago

The City needs to have higher standards supporting their residents.
The City also needs to learn how to say NO and for applicants to prove themselves.

gay not queer
gay not queer
8 months ago

I was complaining about this 5 yrs ago and you sheeple are just starting to notice??? Everyone owes me an apology.

CHLOE ROSS
CHLOE ROSS
8 months ago

Were they not banned before our previous CC was replaced by the ACL* and her enforcers?

Speedy Gonzalez
Speedy Gonzalez
8 months ago

Just buy one. Beats the awful traffic in West Hollywood, especially when they junk up Fountain coming soon. Zip past gridlocked Santa Monica 🚔🚔

BloodshotEyeGuy
BloodshotEyeGuy
8 months ago

Scooters are for children 10 and under. Adults use cars.

Senior Citizen...
Senior Citizen...
8 months ago

Scooters are left on the sidewalks, at traffic lights, in the grass/dirt, etc. I have had too many encounters with these devices. If I had stepped one foot to my right or left, I would have been thrown to the pavement. Not good for someone almost 80. I could have probably suffered a very serious injury, sending me to the hospital or the morgue. Plus, you can’t hear them coming which makes me very anxious when I am on any sidewalk. I think that Paris has sensibly banned them. So, let’s be the Paris of SoCal and also ban them… Read more »

Mikie Friedman
Mikie Friedman
8 months ago

The city of West Hollywood is not trying to end the bad behavior of scooter riders…It is instead merely trying to profit from it! That is shameful!

Larry Block
Admin
8 months ago
Reply to  Mikie Friedman

That’s a great line and right on target!

GET TOUGH
GET TOUGH
8 months ago
Reply to  Mikie Friedman

The City is unable to differentiate between bad behavior of the City Council members, the bad behavior of the scooter riders and companies allowing such behavior and the harm done to the law abiding residents. They reside in wishful thinking land to which they have a means to profit individually and as a city. Unethical at every turn.

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
8 months ago

So rather than outlaw a known proven hazard, the city is saying “let’s make money and continue the hazard”. I get it.

Mikie Friedman
Mikie Friedman
8 months ago
Reply to  WehoQueen

Exactly!! Well said!!

david
david
8 months ago

All of these negotiating points are ridiculous. Whom is supposed to report the unlawful use of these scooters and not returning them properly? West Hollywood continues to say it is the citizens whom should report the issues. If Bird and Lime wanted to correct the problems that have existed since the pilot program has begun than these issues should have been corrected already. Block by Block Ambassadors don’t even call out the riding on sidewalk issues. Simply time to end this program until West Hollywood can provide the infrastructure where scooters can ride safely on the streets and not at… Read more »

GET TOUGH
GET TOUGH
8 months ago

Please keep the numbers high in favor of the City and put them on a one year probation period after which they MAY negotiate the other main points of speed and fees.

Manny
Manny
8 months ago

That Bird letter is for the birds and a joke.

If SNL weren’t on strike they could do a skit about it.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
8 months ago
Reply to  Manny

Yes, the letter attempts to hoodwink us with some cockamamie story about Bird’s magnanimity in doing good in the community and for the environment. Bird is a profit-making venture with profit as its number one goal. All other words are spin and bullpucky.

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