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Tempe City Council establishes license, fees for scooter operators

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PHOENIX — Tempe City Council voted 7-0 Thursday night to approve a resolution that requires dockless scooter and bike operators to apply for a license and pay the city multiple fees.

According to the license terms and conditions, operators of “shared active transportation vehicles” will apply for a right-of-way license annually and pay the city nearly $8,000 to cover application review, license monitoring, data analysis and planning.

Operators are also required to pay a daily fee of $1.06 per vehicle and provide a 24-hour phone line for residents to report vehicles that are incorrectly parked.

If the city is alerted to a vehicle that’s blocking a path, it will contact the operator and give it two hours to move the vehicle.

If the operator does not move the vehicle within that time span, the city will move the vehicle and charge the operator $100 per vehicle moved.

The terms include a number of safety requirements, including that operators must have commercial general liability insurance, and they must educate riders about applicable laws.

The terms also laid out rules about parking and staging the vehicles, including that operators may not place vehicles in front of single-family residential properties on residential streets.

Tempe residents who came to speak at the meeting voiced concerns over safety, citing instances of pedestrians being hit by scooters.

Some spoke about their positive experience working as contractors for scooter companies and expressed concern that the fees may drive them out of Tempe.

The Council said a city work group has been working on safety regulations since the summer and will continue to do so past this vote.

Arizona State University pushed dockless scooters off its Tempe campus in October, citing safety reasons.

The university said in a statement that month that it was “willing to look at what an appropriate model for their use would be, as long as safety is the top priority for all parties involved.”

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