Oakland leaders vote to allow dockless scooters on city streets

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- The Oakland City Council voted on a controversial electric scooter ordinance Monday night.

In a 6-1 vote, Oakland City Council passed an ordinance to regulate dockless scooters in their city, but it didn't come easy.

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"I got these scooters that are out there speeding up and down the streets," exclaimed Larry Reid, the current council president, who was the only no vote. Reid wants to follow in San Francisco's footsteps and ban the scooters until a permitting process exists. "Why don't we do it the right way? Why don't we send them cease and desists," asked Reid during the meeting.

"What is going on now is hurting people and what is going on now is about not having this law," explained Councilmember At Large, Rebecca Kaplan, who was the lead author of the ordinance.

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Kaplan says the ordinance will ensure scooter companies follow safety regulations, like requiring helmets and not allowing scooter users to ride on sidewalks. She was surprised by the level of discord at the meeting. "The level of furor was more than one would expect for a topic like scooters in a city where we're dealing with homelessness and brutal police misconduct cases."

Part of Monday night's controversy was caused when Oakland City staff announced that they were not done with the permitting fee analysis. Oakland's Department of Transportation is still working on what the permit fees will be for the three scooter companies.
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