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North Carolina Scooters Get First Regulation In House Bill

David Boraks

North Carolina legislators have taken a small first step toward regulating electric scooters as Charlotte and other cities wrestle with managing scooters and the companies that offer them to the public.

A House transportation panel voted Tuesday to define "electric stand up scooters" in state law, and make clear they're exempt from registration requirements for mopeds and other vehicles.

The bill's initial version contained more regulations directing how and where scooters can be ridden and parked, and made clear municipal governments can prohibit use on sidewalks and license scooter companies.

[Related Content: Council OKs Rules For E-Scooters, But Revisions Likely ]

Bill sponsor Rep. John Torbett said the proposal wouldn't affect scooter operations in general if it became law. More comprehensive rules could be considered at a later date.

In January, Charlotte City Council approved initial rules in an effort to regulate scooters. The new ordinance caps scooter speeds at 15 miles an hour, prohibits more than one person on a scooter and bans them from sidewalks in the central part of uptown.

But some council members have said those rules aren't enough, and have expressed a desire to revisit scooter regulation after seeing what steps the General Assembly takes.

Three companies — Lime, Bird and Spin — operate scooters in Charlotte.

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