Proposed DC bill would make E-bikes more affordable for residents

Have you seen those E-bikes zooming around District streets? A new bill proposed in the D.C. Council hopes to put more of those on the road.

The Electric Bicycle Incentive Kickstarting the Environment (E-BIKE) Act of 2023, introduced by Ward Two Councilmember Brooke Pinto, would create a rebate program that would partially reimburse D.C. residents that buy an E-bike from a D.C. retailer.

“We really wanted to make sure that access to electronic bikes were more accessible, were more cost effective and that we are really targeting the highest rebates for our lowest income residents,” Pinto told WTOP.

According to the proposed bill, residents who earn incomes at or above 80% of the city’s median family income would get up to $400, or 30% of the electric bicycle cost whichever is lower.

Meanwhile lower income residents would get a rebate of up to $1,200, or 75% of the E-bike’s cost.

Riders would get an additional $500 for cargo electric bicycle models which are able to carry things like groceries or other passengers.

The proposal is based on a similar bill introduced in the U.S. Senate in 2021.

An E-bike uses an electric motor to help power the wheels, in addition to pedals. Sometimes the motor can take over entirely.

“People can use them of all varying abilities and different ages,” said Pinto. “Bikes are a great way to get around that are also more environmentally friendly and have less emissions.”

The bill would allow for 3,000 rebates per year in the District. Pinto told WTOP she hopes to have it passed and funded by the end of 2023.

Luke Lukert

Since joining WTOP Luke Lukert has held just about every job in the newsroom from producer to web writer and now he works as a full-time reporter. He is an avid fan of UGA football. Go Dawgs!

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