Here's what I found out about my city's ordinance...

Warner

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Jun 3, 2008
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This is what my home city (Elgin, Illinois) has - an ordinance specifically banning not just MAB's, but EVERYTHING under 150cc's it appears! Wow! The city adjacent to mine (Hoffman Estates) has a similar ordinance!

Warner




Okay, here is the first part where they define what a motor-driven cycle is, referring to State of Illinois definitions:

11.45.010: DEFINITION:

For the purpose of this chapter, "motor driven or electric cycles" are defined as any motorcycle, motor scooter, motorized pedal cycle, or motor driven skateboard with less than one hundred fifty (150) cubic centimeter piston displacement; or electric scooter, electric pedal driven cycle or electric drive skateboard; or any vehicle as defined by 625 Illinois Compiled Statutes 5/1-145.001 or 5/1-148.2, as amended. (Ord. G81-03 Sec. 1, 2003)


Here are the Illinois statutes:

The Illinois Vehicle Code defines the following:

5/1-145.001 "A motor driven cycle as every motorcycle and every motor scooter with less that 150 cubic centimeter piston displacement including motorized pedalcycles."

5/1-148.2 "A motorized pedalcycle is a motor-driven cycle whose speed attainable in one mile is 30 mph or less, which is equipped with a motor that produces 2 brake horsepower or less. If an internal combustion engine is used, the displacement shall not exceed 50 cubic centimeter displacement and the power drive system shall not require the operator to shift gears." An endorsement is not required for these vehicles.



And here is where they specifically prohibit them:

11.45.020: PROHIBITION:

No person shall operate motor driven or electric cycles upon any public or private street, public sidewalk, parking lot, bike path or public park. (Ord. G81-03 Sec. 1, 2003)


By the way, the neighboring town (Hoffman Estates) also has the same type of ordinance against them.

Warner
 
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Warner

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In light of this, I fired off the following letter to my city's mayor and all of the councilmen:

Good afternoon Mr. Schock and councilmen. My name is Warner Xxxxxxxxx and I’m a 42 year old working professional that has been a resident of Elgin for 15 years. Due to the incredible price of gasoline I have been looking into alternative forms of transportation, and thought that I had found the perfect solution in a power-assisted bicycle. My plan was to commute to and from work on the bicycle, as they routinely achieve more than 150 miles per gallon. I have found that the state of Illinois allows such vehicles to be used as long as they are under 50cc’s in displacement and the operator is a licensed driver. Perfect, I thought. Each day that I rode the bike to work would save my family $10. However, when I checked the municipal code in Elgin I was shocked to see that there is an ordinance specifically banning them. I can understand the need for laws to keep kids from riding their scooters and whatnot all over town, but for a law to be in place that bans the use of something like this for a licensed adult driver just doesn’t make sense. Please tell me that I have misread the ordinance or that there are plans in place to look into this further. I can’t afford to keep filling my van’s gas tank at $95 a shot. I can be reached via e-mail or any time on my cell phone at (xxx) xxx-xxxx.

Thank you for your time,

Warner Xxxxxxxx



We'll see what happens!


Warner
 

lennyharp

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Apr 17, 2008
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Warner,

I like what you said and how you said it. Most cities and communities have way too many laws on the books. This is an example of a poorly thought out responce to a perceived nuisance. The bicycle with a low power and efficient motor is a very good solution to the gas crunch. Communities need to get on board and allow us to use the roads and mix it up without fear of tickets and agressive behavior against the use of these bikes.
 

Warner

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Jun 3, 2008
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541
Follow up.....

Well, I DID just get an e-mail from the Mayor of Elgin. Here is his e-mail followed by my response:

From: Mayor
Sent: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 9:56 AM
To: Warner
Subject: RE: Elgin code on power-assisted bicycles

Dear Mr. Smith,

We are looking into this.


Edward Schock
Mayor, City of Elgin




From: Warner Smith
Sent: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 10:14 AM
To: 'Mayor'
Subject: RE: Elgin code on power-assisted bicycles

Thank you very much! Many communities (more and more with the current gas crisis) are making the legal distinction between motorized platform scooters and motor-assisted bicycles operated by licensed drivers. In looking at the way the Elgin ordinance is written, it essentially bans ALL motorcycles that are less than 150cc's in displacement, which can't be what the intention of the ordinance was. I deeply appreciate your response to this Mayor Schock.

Sincerely,

Warner
 
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lennyharp

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Apr 17, 2008
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Here's hoping that your diplomacy works. The more places that get it passed an intelligent look see, it will help all of us as we ride through your communities. I really do believe that a majority of people when given all the facts, will want the small motored bikes to be legal if not preferred transportation.
 
L

Large Filipino

Guest
Yea I just enjoy my ride on the trails. Colorado has ordinances too but when a police officer sees me chugging along down a bike trail so far the response has been positive.
 
H

HoughMade

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That is an excellent way to agitate for change- be polite and don't look like an agitator.
 

Warner

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Jun 3, 2008
Messages
541
That is an excellent way to agitate for change- be polite and don't look like an agitator.

I'm trying.......I'm trying....thanks for the support. The truth is that I will probably buy the kit and ride the bike anyway. I REALLY don't think the ordinance is directed towards the motorized bicycles, nor do I think I'd get stopped. I did also hear back (just today) from the Illinois Secretary of State with information that I already knew - they are legal but are treated like mopeds. No biggie as I have a valid driver's license.

Warner
 
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