Ten states now have the same e-bike law with minor variations. California led the way in 2016, followed by Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Tennessee, Utah, Washington, and the most recent state to adopt, Connecticut. Bills are pending in Ohio and Pennsylvania.
With e-bikes the most rapidly growing segment in the U.S. bicycle market, the need to harmonize legislation across the 50 states and categorize e-bikes into three classes has been led by the BPSA, PeopleForBikes and E-Bike Committee chair Larry Pizzi from Raleigh Electric for the past four years.
In 2015, the coalition mobilized manufacturers and suppliers to establish e-bike classifications based on the product sold in Europe and consistent with U.S. federal regulations around e-bike manufacturing and sales. E-bikes were organized into three classes, which separated low-speed e-bikes from higher-powered vehicles and simplified the process of establishing regulations around the use of each class.
The more states that adopt the model, the easier it becomes for other states to follow suit. A big thanks to the tireless efforts of the BPSA E-Bike Committee, the PeopleForBikes policy team, and the funding provided above and beyond membership dues by 20 companies.
At the June 12 BPSA Board meeting, two proposals to expand the Charged Up e-bike staff training program were approved for funding in 2018-19. BPSA in partnership with Straw Hat Pictures of Arvada CO will produce an extension of the original Charged Up program launched in March 2017, with the new videos focused on the three-class system and increased e-bike sales, acceptance and use.
The $10,000 funding comes half from the BPSA Education committee and half from the E-Bike committee. For the first time, BPSA will create Charged Up content for consumers, to be rolled out for free use on supplier, retailer and advocacy websites and related social media and other marketing platforms.
BPSA’s Board also voted to commit $10,000 to an e-bike training program in conjunction with NBDA and Barnett Bicycle Institute titled, Setting Up Your Shop for E-Bike Success. BBI general manager Jeff Donaldson explained the need: “There are some definite differences in assembling, testing and servicing e-bikes. We want to give shops some simple guidelines to make it easy to get started and be more successful with e-bikes.”
The Washington state legislature passed the BPSA-created and -backed three-class e-bike legislation in late February.
The bill (SB 6434) is very similar to bills passed in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, Tennessee and Utah and was signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee on March 13th with an effective date of June 7th, 2018.
“We worked closely with Washington Bikes on this bill and have an ally in the governor’s office,” said Morgan Lommele, e-bike campaigns manager for BPSA.
Lommele said BPSA is pursuing e-bike bills in Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin this year.
We’ve been leading the charge to pass favorable e-bike laws, gain more access for e-bikes, and inform retailers and consumers for three years. Here are our latest successes:
• Clarifying e-bike laws: So that it’s easy for riders, retailers, and lawmakers to know where e-bikes are allowed, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Tennessee, and Utah have passed laws that classify e-bikes like bicycles. Click for state by state e-bike guides.
• 2018 e-bike campaigns: We have identified 13 new states where we believe we have the relationships and resources needed to advance e-bike friendly bills: AL, AK, AZ, CT, FL, HI, ID, ME, MA, MO, OR, PA and WY.
• Places to ride eMTBs: A great result of our BPSA/PeopleForBikes partnership is an interactive eMTB map with 8,679 miles of routes cataloged. Our eMTB Adventures highlight great rides in places like Crested Butte, Gunnison, Hood River, or Sun Valley.
• Fighting for better e-bike access: The new eMTB Playbook helps locals advocate for better eMTB access. Use it to understand how e-bike policy works and for all the right talking points.
Boulder, CO: The Bicycle Product Suppliers Association (BPSA) has produced a series of 10 two-minute video training sessions to help shop staff connect with and sell e-bikes.
The BPSA E-bike Committee, comprised of 14 industry company representatives, approved the budget for the program after the E-Bike Summit in mid-December.
BPSA Executive Director Ray Keener, with an extensive history in staff training, co-produced the video with long-time collaborator Chuck Smith of Straw Hat Pictures in Arvada, CO.
“This is an exciting time for e-bike sales in the IBD,” Noted Larry Pizzi, BPSA E-Bike Committee Chair and President of IZIP and Raleigh Electric. “According to NPD Group, sales show strong growth, up more than four times since 2013 in the Dealer channel. This indicates a unique opportunity for IBD’s that embrace the category, and now is the time to get staff trained up and charged up about electric bikes.”
The ten videos present both market context and selling tips. “We shot at six different shops and interviewed about 20 shop staff and customers,” noted Keener. “We did focus groups with shop rookies and veterans, got a good response and made some changes, too.”
The training program is live on the Myagi training website as of March 1. Soon, the content will be available on the Trek, Specialized, Giant, Raleigh Electric, and Bosch training sites as well. A two-minute sample video, the first in the series of 10, “The E-Bike Appeal,” is available here.