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Despite new policy, Atlanta has failed to collect fines for impounded e-scooters

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AJC report: Uncollected e-scooter impound fees could have netted more than $200K for city

A picture of two Bird e-scooters parked on a sidewalk, one knocked over on its side.
It’s illegal to park dockelss e-scooters and bikes in public rights of way.
Sean Keenan, Curbed Atlanta

The City of Atlanta’s Department of Public Works impounded thousands of illegally parked e-scooters this past summer, but officials reportedly neglected to collect any fees for their troubles.

In June, city officials told Curbed Atlanta that companies operating dockless mobility devices have to pay a $75 impound fee—plus $25 per day for storage—for each vehicle public works crews remove from sidewalks and public rights of way.

Once those fees are paid, those companies can reclaim their two-wheelers, according to the policy.

But since the city has neglected to collect fees from nearly 3,000 impounded vehicles, it’s left more than $200,000 on the table, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Laws regulating dockless e-scooter and bike operations were enacted in January, barring riders from parking the devices on sidewalks—unless they leave at least five feet of walking room—and public rights of way.

Even riders can be liable to pay fines of up to $1,000 for violating the new rules.

Still, though, the electric vehicles can frequently be seen littered around the city; it’s unclear whether any riders have been ticketed.

City of Atlanta officials did not respond to Curbed’s request for comment as of press time, and this story will be updated should responses be provided.

Public Works Commissioner James Jackson last week said the city is revising its impound fee collection processes, although he didn’t provide specifics, according to the AJC.

Officials, he said, are considering ways to retroactively collect the fees.