Local councils have been given stronger powers to protect their communities from irresponsible share bike operators.
Local Government Minister Gabrielle Upton said the new powers allow councils to more easily seize dumped bikes and fine operators whose bikes are dumped in public places.
“While several share bike operators have left the market, resolving many of the problems, these new powers will ensure councils can target any irresponsible operators who set up shop in Sydney and other parts of NSW,” Ms Upton said.
New powers for local councils follow changes to the Impounding Act passed by Parliament, including:
- Rangers can immediately impound or move share bikes causing an obstruction or safety risk in a public place.
- Fines of $500 per bike or a court-imposed a penalty of up to $2,750 for operators who fail to remove a bike causing an obstruction or safety risk within three hours of being notified.
- Fines of $500 per bike or a court-imposed a penalty of up to $2,750 for operators who fail to remove a bike left in the same place for more than a week within four days of being notified.
“Local councils now have expanded powers to target share bikes that cause obstructions, pose safety risks or are left unused in one place for too long,” Ms Upton said.
“The new powers add to a range of powers local councils and police already have under various laws to deal with dumped share bikes causing problems in public places.
“There are also new powers that enable anyone in the community to notify an operator that a share bike is causing an obstruction or safety risk, or has been there for more than a week.
“The Government will monitor the effectiveness of the new powers and if necessary implement an enforceable code of practice with even stricter controls to put the brakes on any new or emerging impacts on local communities.”
Ms Upton said nobody wants to see a return of dumped and broken share bikes being a safety risk and a blight on the environment.
“These new powers put the responsibility firmly at the feet of share bike operators who will face the consequences if they don’t do the right thing.”