*Equipped with handlebars and an electric motor.
*Powered by an electric motor, human power or both.
*Capable of a maximum speed of no more than 20 mph.
The term does not include electric bikes, motorcycles, mopeds or electric personal assistive mobility devices.
At Tuesday’s hearing, Gooch said the 20-mph limit is not a speed limit imposed by the state – it’s just a description of how fast such devices are capable of going. Speed limits and other rules of the road would be set by cities and counties. Some of them – including Atlanta – have already done so.
The bill would also allow local governments to place a moratorium on scooters or even ban them outright. But Gooch and other senators hope they won't. Though critics have cited safety and other concerns, senators believe the devices can be useful in moving people to and from transit stations and getting them out of their cars for other short trips.
“I don’t want to see every city in Georgia ban scooters,” Gooch said. “If there’s a problem, the industry should be able to come to local governments in Georgia and work it out.”
Industry and local government representatives indicated they support the bill.