Georgians will have to wait at least another year for statewide regulation of electric scooters. But the General Assembly this week approved new rules for electric bicycles.
Lawmakers approved House Bill 454, which allow electric bikes to use paved paths if they are not capable of reaching a speed of 20 mph or if the motor stops when the bike reaches that speed. The bill also would require people who ride faster electric bikes to wear helmets.
The bill originally included statewide regulations for electric scooters. But negotiations with scooter companies could not be completed during the legislative session. Those talks will continue, with an eye toward a new bill next year.
In addition, the state Senate approved Senate Resolution 479, which creates a committee to study scooter regulations. The committee will report back before next year's legislative session.
Scooters have been popping up across metro Atlanta since last spring. Advocates say they're great for short trips. Critics say they've become a nuisance. Cities like Atlanta have scrambled to come up with regulations to govern the use of the devices.
Georgia lawmakers want to establish basic rules that can apply statewide.