Bird and Lime electric scooter companies signed an agreement with Bloomington on Wednesday to continue using the city’s parks and right-of-way to operate their businesses.
The interim operating agreement will act as the single regulating document for all e-scooter rental companies operating in Bloomington until a municipal ordinance is passed.
The scooter companies will pay Bloomington an annual fee of $10,000 as well as an additional fee of 10 cents per ride on any scooter distributed in the city, collected monthly. The city will also have access to the company’s data relating to usage.
In addition, the contract outlines parameters for the use and parking of the scooters and requires the companies to provide education and communication with the public on multiple platforms. Bird and Lime are also liable for injury or damage to property and will be responsible for $50 fines for the improper parking or staging of an e-scooter.
The agreement also includes compensation to the city for any costs brought on by the operation of scooters in its parks and right-of-way, including in relation to enforcement and infrastructure maintenance.
Bloomington will be installing signs along Kirkwood Avenue and downtown over the next week that indicate sidewalks where riders cannot use scooter, bikes, skateboards and other related transportation methods.
Parking enforcement officials will be issuing tickets and fines to riders who don’t follow these dismount areas and will continue to assign violations to riders who neglect other traffic laws.
Bloomington has also announced a new way for its residents to send in feedback about this agreement and other local issues through an online polling system. The topic for the first set of questions is rentable scooter usage in Bloomington. The poll can be found at polco.us or on the Polco app.
The interim operating agreement has been signed by both Bird and Lime and will be presented to the Board of Public Works and the Parks Commission for signatures in coming weeks in order for the agreement to go into effect.