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BPSA's 2016 e-bike initiative nears $320,000 fundraising goal

Published December 4, 2015

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. (BRAIN) — With one major success under its belt, the BPSA's E-Bike Committee is well on its way to reaching its $320,000 fundraising goal for its 2016 legislative initiatives.

Larry Pizzi, who heads the committee, said bike brands, component suppliers and retailers have pledged some $230,000, or 72 percent, towards the goal as of Thursday afternoon. Pizzi spoke after Thursday's E-bike Summit, which attracted 50 participants from around the country.

"I think by the end of the year we should be at our goal," he said. Pizzi is also a senior vice president for Accell North America.

The E-bike Summit attracted 50 participants from around the country. Interbike hosted the meeting at its southern California offices.

Pizzi and others outlined the committee's 2016 goals for changing state laws. At the top of the list is New York, where e-bikes are technically illegal under outdated state laws.

The campaign got a boost this year when the California legislature passed the BPSA's model legislation, which creates three e-bike classifications for pedal-assist e-bikes, throttle-equipped e-bikes, and "speed pedelecs," or pedal-assist bikes that can reach higher speeds.

The classification system goes into effect on Jan. 1.

An e-bike bill has passed one house of the New York legislature every year, but political infighting has prevented the measure from becoming law.

To bypass the legislature, advocates instead are appealing to Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) to include an e-bike legalization measure in his annual budget proposal, said Morgan Lommele, the e-bike campaign manager for PeopleForBikes, which is working with the BPSA on the campaign.

Lommele said advocates, led by the New York Bicycling Coalition and its lobbyists in Albany, N.Y., are promoting e-bike legalization as a way of boosting economic development and tourism in the state.

See the Jan. 1 issue of Bicycle Retailer and Industry News for more coverage of the E-bike Summit.

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