Groups Applaud E-Bike Legalization

New York League of Conservation Voters
Contact: Shachar Sharon,

For Immediate Release: April 1, 2020
212-361-6350 Ext. 206


This step to legalize e-bikes comes at a critical time when more at-home New Yorkers are relying on delivery workers

Albany, N.Y. – A coalition led by the New York League of Conservation Voters and Transportation Alternatives applauds the New York State Legislature for including the legalization of e-bikes and e-scooters in the State Budget. 

Given the current health crisis, there is increased urgency to legalize e-bikes to assist with delivery workers, many of which are immigrants, who rely on the speed and cost-efficiency of e-bikes to make as many deliveries as possible. With an increased reliance on take-out and delivery services and to reduce density on mass transit, the legalization of e-bikes and e-scooters comes at a crucial time for the state.  

The legalization of e-bikes is also integral to New York’s environmental goals. New York City streets are often choked with traffic, contributing to climate change and poor air quality for vulnerable communities. With congestion providing coming, e-bikes and e-scooters can provide options for people to commute and connect with mass transit.  Transportation options provided by e-bikes and e-scooters can bridge the gap in cities’ public transportation networks, connecting residents to their closest public transportation option rather than using personal vehicles or for-hire services. 

“To tackle our climate goals, we must focus on reducing transportation emissions and reducing the total number of vehicle miles traveled must be part of the solution. We applaud the State Legislature and Governor Cuomo for including the legalization of e-bikes and e-scooters in the State Budget. With more green transportation options, New Yorkers will be able to displace private vehicle trips and do their part to address climate change,” said Julie Tighe, President of the New York League of Conservation Voters. 

The coalition supporting the legalization of e-bikes and e-scooters includes: New York League of Conservation Voters, Transportation Alternatives, Asian American Federation, Environmental Advocates of New York, Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce, The Legal Aid Society, Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, New York Building Congress, Queens Chamber of Commerce, Parks & Trails NY, Partnership for New York City, Regional Plan Association, Tech:NYC, Tri-State Transportation Campaign, and Waterfront Alliance. 

“Many e-bike delivery workers in NYC are immigrants, from mostly Asian and Latinx communities and all they’ve ever wanted was to earn a living. Not only has the COVID crisis revealed how much New Yorkers depend on their services–it also shows how the e-bike is essential for these workers to meet the growing demand. Since the initial crackdown on e-bike delivery workers in New York City in 2017, the Asian American Federation has been working tirelessly to get these delivery workers the justice they deserve. We thank the Governor and the State Legislature for delivering it to them and their families in this budget, ” said Jo-Ann Yoo, executive director of the Asian American Federation.

“We join NYLCV and TransAlt in applauding New York State Legislature for legalizing e-bikes and e-scooters,” stated John Choe, executive director of the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce. “Our business community needs all the help we can get in revitalizing our local economy, which has been devastated by COVID-19. Innovative solutions like micro-mobility must be part of a fundamental restructuring of commercial districts towards a sustainable, resilient, and decentralized economy that supports local communities.”

“We are glad to see the governor and the state legislature include e-bike and e-scooter legalization in the state budget,” said Nick Sifuentes, Executive Director of Tri-State Transportation Campaign. “E-bikes and e-scooters are incredibly important modes of transportation for all New Yorkers, from casual riders to delivery persons whose income relies on fast personal transportation. And as micromobility grows in popularity and replaces car trips, this will prove a critical tool toward reducing traffic congestion on New York’s streets.”

“The importance of time spent outdoors has never been more clear than in this current crisis,” said Robin Dropkin, Executive Director of Parks & Trails New York. “Thank you to the Governor and the Legislature for confirming that e-bikes are a safe, legal way to travel and recreate and ensuring that people of all ages and abilities can enjoy the mental and physical health benefits of time spent bicycling our state’s greenways and trail networks.”

“Legalizing e-bikes and e-scooters is both great for New York down the road as well as vital during these particularly challenging times,” said Julie Samuels, Executive Director of Tech:NYC. “Adding two more types of transportation to our streets will be a boon to companies and industries that depend on the efficient movement of goods, but also give everyday travelers greater flexibility and affordability. I applaud lawmakers for saying yes to this common sense idea, and look forward to ironing out the details.”

“Regional Plan Association is pleased to see e-bike and e-scooter legislation included in the state budget,” said Kate Slevin, Senior Vice President of State Programs and Advocacy at Regional Plan Association. “E-bikes and e-scooters provide affordable, healthy, and low carbon ways of getting around and are especially vital right now, as the city increasingly relies on delivery workers for food and other necessities. RPA applauds the Governor and State Legislative leaders – this change can’t come soon enough.”

“Transportation Alternatives applauds Governor Cuomo and the state legislature for legalizing e-bikes and e-scooters in the state budget. This move is especially important today, as working cyclists who rely on e-bikes have been on the front lines of the pandemic by keeping New Yorkers fed and making it possible for restaurants to stay in business,” said Danny Harris, executive director of Transportation Alternatives. “E-bikes and e-scooters are transportation alternatives that can help us address congestion, reduce emissions and improve access to opportunity for all New Yorkers. We thank the governor and those who have championed this legislation over the years for their leadership in delivering justice for working cyclists, and for creating a safe and sustainable transportation future.”

“The Governor and Legislature should be commended for legalizing the use e-scooters and e-bikes in this year’s budget. Doing so will provide New Yorkers with more choices to move around while cutting air pollution and improving public health. This is good news for breathers,” said Conor Bambrick, Director of Climate Policy

“This legislation delivers a responsible and safe approach to legalizing e-bikes and e-scooters, which are transportation and delivery options that many New Yorkers want to take advantage of.” Michael Blaustein, Vice President, Government Affairs, Partnership for NYC.

“The legalization of e-bikes and e-scooters couldn’t come at a more crucial time,” said Carlo A. Scissura, Esq., President & CEO of the New York Building Congress. “This policy helps support our small businesses, empowers our frontline delivery workers and reduces the stress on our roads and mass transit systems. We’re thankful for the leadership of Governor Cuomo and our State Legislature for including this in the budget.”

“With an unprecedented change in our daily reality, it is good to know that the passage of this legislation is included in our current NYS Budget,” says Thomas J. Grech, President & CEO of the Queens Chamber of Commerce. “Now more than ever we need to support our small businesses and allow them all the tools for expedited delivery and transportation access.”

“To lower our carbon footprint and relieve congestion in our increasingly crowded city,  e-bikes and e-scooters are two important transport methods among many we must support, including waterborne freight movement and ferries.  Thank you to Governor Cuomo and our legislature for supporting the bikes and scooters in the state’s proposed budget,” said Roland Lewis, President of the Waterfront Alliance.”

“The legalization of e-bikes is great news for the hardworking people who are delivering meals during the coronavirus crisis,” said Jessica Walker, President and CEO of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce. “These deliveries are critical for New Yorkers who are doing their best to stay at home and also for the businesses that are trying to maintain some level of revenue generation during the shutdown.”

“During this public health crisis delivery workers are on the frontline, making sure warm food is delivered to homes throughout the city. Now more than ever, it is clear how much we all depend on delivery workers and the essential service they provide. The legalization of e-bikes is long overdue. We must step up and support the rights of delivery workers and decriminalize the use of e-bikes,” said Deborah Axt, Co-Executive Director of Make the Road NY.