STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA) - Starkville city leaders recently voted to keep electronic rental scooters in town. However, they said there needs to be more guidelines in place because of safety concerns. City leaders met tonight to address that issue during a public hearing
The city is in an agreement with the company Bird, so Bird’s guidelines are what stand right now when it comes to the scooters. But city leaders want to make a separate ordinance, so residents will have to follow city guidelines when it comes to Bird or any other eTransportation that comes to the city.
"More often than not I see people respecting them, putting them where they need to be," said Chris Collins. "It just takes one bad apple to kind of ruin it for everybody, but for the most part, everybody’s been really respectful.”
Collins is a barber at Liberty Bell Barbershop on Main Street. He said he’s seen a lot of people riding e-scooters in the area.
However, city leaders said everybody doesn’t use the scooters correctly. As a result, the city held a public hearing today to get input from residents and to finalize an ordinance regarding eTransportation.
Some spoke highly of the scooters during the hearing, and others like Michael Hubbard addressed concerns.
“I think there should have been a vote on whether to accept the business until everything seemed to be ironed out, and voices heard by the citizens," said Hubbard.
City leaders previously voted to ban the scooters and then later voted to bring them back. This following a veto of the ban by Mayor Lynn Spruill.
“I all along thought that they were a nice alternative transportation opportunity for our residents. I thought that they were a fun opportunity for our residents," said Spruill.
The main concern that people addressed at the hearing was safety, with topics like age and riding in dangerous areas coming up often. Right now, you have to be 18 to ride a Bird Scooter. That age number could change once a city ordinance is passed.
There will be another public hearing on August 3rd. After that hearing, the board will then vote on whether to adopt or reject a city ordinance for eTransportation.