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BPSA schedules Feb. 26 'e-bike summit'

Published February 6, 2015
Meeting at Currie Tech headquarters in California will discuss its recent legislation initiative

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. — The e-bike committee of the Bicycle Product Suppliers Association is hosting a summit on Feb. 26 to discuss its national legislative initiative. Currie Technologies will host the meeting at its Simi Valley, Calif., headquarters. The meeting will also be streamed by webcast for those unable to travel to Southern California.

"We've invited all of the trade that is involved with e-bikes or planning to get involved with e-bikes," including bike brands, advocacy groups, retailers and land managers, Larry Pizzi, chairman of the BPSA e-bike committee, said Friday.

"We've basically extended an invite to anybody who has shown an interest in being involved."

Pizzi is also president and CEO of Currie, the biggest e-bike seller in the United States and a division of the Accell Group. Participants will include representatives from the various advocacy groups that are involved in the initiative, including PeopleForBikes and the California and New York Bicycle Coalitions. The summit is scheduled to run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Pacific time and will be preceded by an invitation-only meeting of the BPSA e-bike committee.

The BPSA's $300,000 legislative initiative seeks to pass model e-bike legislation in California and New York, two populous states that are often trendsetters.

The BPSA proposes creating three classifications of e-bikes, with different restrictions on where they can be ridden.

The proposed classifications include pedal-assist e-bikes, or pedelecs; e-bikes equipped with throttles; and "speed pedelecs." The first two classifications would be limited to motor-assisted speeds of 20 miles an hour, while a speed pedelec would be allowed to go up to 28 miles an hour. E-bike committee members expect to update meeting participants on the progress of legislation in California and New York.

Members also plan to discuss a strategy of working with IMBA and land mangers on allowing off-road use of e-bikes, and collaborating retailers and other groups to grow the e-bike segment of the industry.

PeopleForBikes, the industry's biggest advocacy organization, is playing a key role in the initiative. PeopleForBikes and the BPSA have hired a new e-bike coordinator, Morgan Lommele, who will oversee the initiative. PeopleForBikes also recently hired a state and local policy analyst, Alex Logemann, who tracks bicycle-related legislation.

"We're really trying to do a better job of being in touch with the industry, inform them of issues and then get them involved," said Jenn Dice, PeopleForBike's vice president of government relations.

Along with promoting the model legislation, BPSA and People for Bikes are trying to head off legislation that could hurt e-bikes. Dice said Logemann recently identified several e-bike-related bills that have been introduced in the Montana, South Carolina and Nebraska legislatures.

Space at the Simi Valley meeting is limited, but anyone interested in participating in the webcast can apply for an access code from Lommele. Her email is morgan@paceoutreach.com. See the Feb. 1 issue of Bicycle Retailer & Industry News for full coverage of the BPSA e-bike initiative. 

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