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St. Charles County, MO Bike Ban Bill (UPDATED)
First Black Hawk, Colorado, now St. Charles County, Missouri.
St. Charles County Council Member Joe Brazil will be introducing a bill (bill no. 3620) in an attempt to ban bicycles from 5 state owned highways at tonight's County Council meeting. If you live in Charles County, please attend tonight's meeting at 7:00pm at the County Council Executive Building.
The Missouri Bicyle and Pedestrian Federation recommends the following to those attending:
* If you live, work, or own a business in St Charles County, say so.
* Strongly oppose the bicycle ban.
* The ban on bicycles is the absolutely wrong way to go about solving what is a very serious problem.
* Before taking such a drastic and controversial action, the council needs to carefully study the issue and meet with affected groups.
* No other county in Missouri, or in the U.S. for that matter, has enacted such a sweeping ban of bicyclists on the main and only connecting highways.
* Area bicycle organizations would like the chance to meet with county officials, MoDOT officials, concerned citizens groups, and others, and work out a solution that will actually solve the problem rather than simply scapegoating bicyclists.
* More study is needed--do they even know if **any** collisions on these roads are caused by bicyclists? Have they studied causes of collisions on these roads? If not, they need to stop and do so before taking drastic action.
For St. Charles County residents unable to attend the meeting, you can email your County Council member at our Advocacy Center.
See this newscast on the ban:
Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Coordinator Melissa Anderson says that the roads in the proposed ban fall under the jurisdiction of Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission and that “MoDOT has no intention of prohibiting cyclists from state roads. Bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers according to the law. It is important that there is mutual respect and consideration between cyclists and motorists. Cyclists must obey the laws and motorists need to respect a cyclist's right to use the road and not intentionally cause them harm. Local law enforcement may be able to assist with both of these issues.”
Missouri State law says:
226.130. 1. The commission shall: (1) Have supervision of highways and bridges which are constructed, improved and maintained in whole or in part by the aid of state moneys, and of highways constructed in whole or in part by the aid of moneys appropriated by the United States government, so far as such supervision is consistent with the acts of Congress relating thereto;