Beverly Hills Sued By Bird Rides Over Electric Scooter Ban
Bird is suing Beverly Hills, California, over scooter ban
- Bird is suing Beverly Hills, California, after its City Council banned its electric scooters in July.
- The company said in the suit that it had been fined "more than 0,000" to retrieve impounded scooters.
- "Beverly Hills has gone to the extreme," Bird said in the lawsuit, claiming that the ordinance violates state law.
After Beverly Hills, California, approved a six-month ban on "shared mobility devices" in July, it quickly began impounding electric scooters throughout the city.
On Thursday, the electric-scooter startup Bird filed a lawsuit against the city, saying it had been fined "more than 0,000" from more than 950 citations as a result of the new ordinance. The company says in the suit that "Beverly Hills has gone to the extreme" and accuses it of violating the California Vehicle Code by banning its scooters within city limits.
In the lawsuit, Bird described the Beverly Hills City Council's passage of a six-month ban as a "hasty and deceptive proceeding riddled with violations of California's open-meeting, public-participation, and environmental laws." The company said the city had fought tooth and nail against a subway extension, "preferring instead to keep transit riders in communities to the east from reaching Beverly Hills."
One example of an impound notice included in Bird's lawsuit. Court documents A representative for the city did not respond to a request for comment.
In discussions at a special meeting in July, council members said they were furious at how Bird and other scooter companies had launched in cities without warning.
"We need to make this as difficult and as punitive as we can," Mayor Julian Gold .
Gold said he was "beyond offended by the manner in which this was rolled out."
"I think it's a great technology, and maybe it's the right thing," he said, "but to intentionally impose on cities the risks that you as organizations have done in an effort to make profit, as far as I'm concerned, is unconscionable."
Bird said that many of the reasons cited by council members in approving the ban were false.
"The City Council argued that scooters are 'unregulated.' This is plainly untrue," Bird said in the lawsuit, citing the California Vehicle Code.
It added: "If they were unregulated, the solution would beregulation, which was what the agenda for the Special Meeting listed, but not what the City Council actually considered."
Read more:Lime wants to be more than a scooter startup — and it's hired an executive from one of the world's most well-known luxury fashion companies to help it get there
There was one dissenter on the council: Vice Mayor John Mirisch, who said scooters and electric vehicles weren't disruptive on their own.
"What is new is the combination ... and what is perhaps disruptive is the model, the action plan and the implementation," he said.
"A lot of these accidents that are waiting to happen are because people aren't following the existing rules of the road," Mirisch added. "They do exist."
Bird alleges it has been "irreparably harmed" by the city's "unlawful actions" and requests in its suit that the court award it damages, reimbursement for impound fees, and costs of the lawsuit. A hearing is set for February.
"The actions taken by the City of Beverly Hills are at odds with California's goals of being a global climate leader," Bird said in a press release.
Video: Bird Suing Beverly Hills Over 0,000 Fines From City's Ban
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