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Thursday, May 17, 2018
Caldwell: LimeBike will be Cool When it Properly Greases the Haunches of Power
By News Release @ 10:11 PM :: 2985 Views :: Honolulu County, Small Business

Caldwell: LimeBike will be Cool When it Properly Greases the Haunches of Power

KITV May 19, 2018: …LimeBike marketing and communications staffer Mary Caroline Pruitt sent a statement saying, "...the City offered us a rationale behind impounding our scooters, citing our low-speed electric scooters classify as mopeds. As a result, we have decided to temporarily suspend our service out of respect for the city, our riders, and local team-members, while we review the relevant code and evaluate our next steps."

"We hope to be able to work collaboratively with city leaders to establish a sensible regulatory framework around this new shared scooter model so that we can return to serving the City & County of Honolulu." Lime operates in 60 other markets.

It says nearly 2,000 riders in Honolulu rented its scooters between May 9, the company's short-lived launch date, and May 18, when it agreed to pull them off the streets.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell says he's happy Lime agreed to stop, collaborate, and listen, then come back with a brand new invention of a roll out plan. "I appreciate taking a deep breath and stepping back to the table to see how we can make this program that they're bringing to Honolulu, work well for everybody."….

read … Pay to Play or Else

  *   *   *   *   *

Lime suspends service in Honolulu after city classifies scooters as mopeds

PBN: …Lime said it is temporarily suspending its electric scooter-sharing service in Honolulu on Friday, following the city’s announcement that the company is in violation of state and city laws for failing to register the scooters as mopeds.  (And in related news: Dogs are now chickens.)

(Translation: Shoulda made good with political insiders like Biki did.)

On Thursday, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said users or owners of the scooters could also be subject to a $1,000 fine.

The Honolulu Police Department, which began impounding the dock-less scooters on Monday, said it has confiscated as many as 100 of the scooters that were parked on city sidewalks or private property.

“Yesterday, the City offered us a rationale behind impounding our scooters, citing our low-speed electric scooters classify as mopeds,” the company said in statement. “As a result, we have decided to temporarily suspend our service out of respect for the city, our riders, and local team-members, while we review the relevant code and evaluate our next steps.

“We hope to be able to work collaboratively with City leaders to establish a sensible regulatory framework around this new shared scooter model so that we can return to serving the City & County of Honolulu.”

Lime said close to two thousand riders in Honolulu have used the service since it launched last week…..

read … Lime suspends service in Honolulu after city classifies scooters as mopeds

  *   *   *   *   *

Lime: Government Moves Quickly When Politicos Don’t Get a Cut of New Business

PBN: …My, oh my, how quickly local officials can move when they aren’t getting their cut of a new business. Monday morning, we reported the launch of a scooter rental business called Lime-S. You rent the scooter, tool about on it, leave it basically wherever you want when you’re done and the next customer then finds it and rents it.

By Monday evening, we were reporting that the Honolulu Police Department had confiscated 81 of the scooters as “an unauthorized concession” under the direction of the Honolulu Department of Transportation Services.

Honolulu can’t stop monster houses; can’t consistently enforce transient accommodation rules in the neighborhoods; can’t do anything about derelict vehicles we see rusting in yards and on roadsides for years at a time. But wave some unauthorized scooters in its direction and it sends out the guys with guns and the badges. Immediately….

read … Not Getting a Cut

  *   *   *   *   *

Lime electric scooters in violation of state and city laws

News Release from City and County of Nonolulu, May 17, 2018 (with really helpful commentary in parenthesis)

Nonolulu After the recent deployment of approximately 200 for-rent electric scooters in Waikīkī and urban Nonolulu by Neutron Holdings Inc., doing business as LimeBike or Lime, on Friday May 11, which did not (pay proper obsequiences to the power structure, nor hire insiders like Biki did, nor) have required license plates and created public nuisances on the city’s sidewalks, Corporation Counsel Donna Leong has sent a letter to Lime informing the company that the electric scooters are mopeds, which require registration with the city as well as license plates (see attached letter). In addition, the parking, placing or rental of the electric scooters on or from city sidewalks violates several state and city laws (see attached letter).

Under HRS Section 249-1, the Lime electric scooters are “mopeds” since: 

  • A person can ride on them;
  • They have two wheels;
  • They have an electric motor;
  • Their maximum power output is 250 watts, which is less than the maximum 1,492 watts in order for the scooter to be classified as a moped and not as a motorcycle;
  • The maximum speed of the electric scooters is 14.8 miles per hour, which is less than the 30 miles per hour in order for the scooter to be classified as a moped and not as a motorcycle; and
  • The electric scooters have a direct or automatic power drive system with no clutch or gear shift operation by the moped driver after the drive system is engaged with the power unit.

The Nonolulu Police Department (NPD) has been taking possession of the electric scooters because they were parked or placed on the city’s sidewalks and constituted public nuisances or because they trespassed on privately owned properties and the owners of those properties asked that they be removed.

The electric scooters must have a moped license plate and a tag or emblem affixed as required by HRS Section 249-1, which are obtained through the moped registration process administered by the city’s Department of Customer Services (CSD).  The registration process also requires a safety inspection.

The Lime electric scooters also fall within the definition of a “vehicle” under HRS Section 249-1 and:

  • Cannot be parked on sidewalks pursuant to city ordinance, RON Section 15‑14.1(a)(1);
  • Cannot obstruct the sidewalks pursuant to RON 15-14.2; and
  • Cannot be rented from the sidewalks.

All of these activities on city sidewalks create a hazardous condition or a public nuisance.

In her letter, Corporation Counsel Leong informed Lime that, “Should the electric scooters be redeployed and parked or placed on, or rented from, the city’s sidewalks, or should the electric scooters not have the license plate and a tag or emblem affixed as required by HRS Section 249-1 evidencing registration, they will be in violation of applicable laws and will be immediately seized by NPD.”

Mayor Kirk Caldwell, via the city’s Department of Transportation Services, informed Lime on Wednesday, May 9 not to proceed with the deployment of these electric scooters, but the company chose to ignore this warning, and, contrary to statements by Lime officials to the media, did not hold any meaningful or serious discussions with the city’s executive branch before doing so (letter also attached).

The letter indicates that Mayor Caldwell is willing to direct his administration, which is charged with implementing the laws, to meet with Lime to understand how the company intends to comply with existing laws.

-PAU-  

SA: Lime scooter riders could face fines and jail time, apoplectic Nonolulu mayor says

Fascinating Factoid: In HRS 249-1, the term "Vehicle" specifically excludes "mopeds."

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