Cyclists and activists protest new Los Angeles ban on selling bike parts on sidewalks – Daily News

Dozens of people gathered outside Los Angeles City Hall to protest an ordinance prohibiting people from mounting or dismounting bicycles in the public right-of-way that went into effect today.

The ordinance was approved by the city council in June. Councilman Joe Buscaino, who proposed it, argued that it would reduce the number of bike thefts in Los Angeles and prevent “bike shops”, in which people disassemble stolen bikes and sell the parts.

Eli Akira Kaufman, executive director of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, told City News Service that the ordinance fails to address the root issues of bicycle theft and targets vulnerable groups like the homeless and people of color.

“For many people who are unlucky or – for whatever reason – find themselves under-housed, a bike becomes an essential lifeline for getting around and navigating the area,” Kaufman said.

Kaufman agreed that bike theft is a problem, but said “there are so many other ideas that weren’t explored before this draconian order was put in place.”

The ordinance is modeled after that in effect in Long Beach to prohibit the assembly, disassembly, sale, offer for sale, distribution of bicycles and bicycle parts on public property or in the public right-of-way. Under the ordinance, a “chop shop” is defined as:

Buscaino said his district, which borders Long Beach, “has seen a proliferation of bike shops.”

Wiley C. Thompson