Seatless bicycle bill whizzes through Senate
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elliptical bike
State law prohibits a person from operating a bicycle without a seat, like an elliptical.

Riding a seatless bicycle may soon become lawful under a bill pedaled Thursday to the Governor’s desk.

The Senate blessed the proposal (HB 353) with a unanimous vote.  Rep. Brett Hage of Hartford is the bill sponsor.

State law prohibits a person from operating a bicycle without a seat.

They can only ride “upon or astride a permanent and regular seat.”

But under the proposal, Floridians could legally ride a seatless bike if the manufacturer designed the bike to be operated that way.

“This allows elliptical bikes, which do not have to have a seat, to now qualify to be driven on the road,” said Republican Sen. Dennis Baxley, sponsor of the Senate companion.

According to a staff analysis, only California prohibits the operation of a seatless bicycle.

California law, however, does make an exception for bikes intended to be seatless.

What’s more, offenders in Florida can face $15 penalties plus court costs, which end up totaling to $56.50, the analysis explains.

“State and local governments may see a reduction in revenues associated with no longer issuing citations for riding a bicycle without a seat,” the staff analysis explains.

The bill advanced with an amendment that would allow municipalities to restrict e-bike use on beaches.

Sen. Jeff Brandes of St. Petersburg sponsored the amendment.

“We have some 80-year-olds taking bikes and using spring breakers as ramps…” Brandes told lawmakers on the Senate floor. “It’s just additional local control which I know everybody in this room loves.”

If signed into law, the bill would take effect July 1.

During the committee process, Hage said people in The Villages and other parts of Florida ride elliptical bicycles frequently.

He also said Villages’ residents have received tickets for riding them.

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the Florida State Capitol. After a go with the U.S. Army, the Orlando-native attended the University of Central Florida and earned a degree in American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. He'd love to hear from you. You can reach Jason by email ([email protected]) or on Twitter at @byJasonDelgado.


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