Former District C councilman James Carter's ordinance for mandatory bicycle registration, with fees of up to $75 (See "License to Ride," May 4), has been withdrawn. In an email to Gambit, Metropolitan Bicycle Coalition (MBC) president Nicole McCall forwarded a note from the office of District C New Orleans City Councilwoman Kristen Gisleson Palmer's legislative director J. Nicole Webre, stating Ordinance Cal. No. 27,907, slated for a vote at the May 20 meeting, would be withdrawn.
The ordinance was first introduced March 11 by request of New Orleans Police Department officials who touted registration as a theft deterrent. The ordinance would require all bicycles worth more than $100 and with tire sizes of more than 20 inches to register the bike with NOPD in return for a "license plate" sticker, an ordinance that's been informally off the books since after Hurricane Katrina, when the floods destroyed the database. Bicyclists would have had to pay a $15 fee or a $75 fee for undefined "commercial" bikes. According to the MBC, the collected fees would pay for setting up the database itself, not infrastructure or resources for bicyclists. The vote was deferred several times until May 20, when Carter would be out of office. — Alex Woodward