After an aborted attempt to legalise all electric vehicles in Sark, the island will now look at allowing electric bicycles along side invalid carriages.
At today's Chief Pleas meeting, Conseillers were asked to approve plans for the Road Traffic Committee to undertake "appropriate consultation with the residents of Sark on the subject of the possible deregulation of electric bicycles on Sark roads."
Led by Conseiller Anthony Dunks, the Road Traffic Committee said it wanted to find out how Sark residents feel about allowing electric bikes in the island.
In its original policy letter, lodged earlier this year ahead of the Easter meeting of Chief Pleas in April, the RTC said it had been approached by a number of Sark residents asking if it would look at the possible deregulation of electric cycles. The Committee said when it considered that matter it agreed the time was right and that the Law should be looked at, and it was further decided to consult with Sark residents before anything happened to find out if there was a wider appetite for change to Sark's laws governing vehicles.
That proposal was thrown out, but the RTC returned today with proposals limited to electric bicycles and not including cars.
In the renewed proposals, the RTC stated that:
The Motor Vehicles (Sark) Law, 2013 governs the regulation of electric cycles, invalid carriages and powered wheelchairs on Sark roads. Section 44. (1) of the Law defines both an ‘electric bicycle’ and an ‘invalid carriage’, while Part 4 details the restrictions and requirements to operate such a vehicle.
The Committee again said it had been approached by a number of Sark residents asking if it would look at the possible deregulation of electric cycles on Sark roads. The Committee still believes the time is right to look at the Law and it is now asking for permission to "advertise the consultation by posters in the public boxes and on the Government website, as well as the distribution of a letter/questionnaire via house-to-house delivery."
The initial work to survey the public will be minimal with the anticipated cost of the proposed consultation to "consist of the fee for the house-to-house mail shot plus some of the printing of the letter/questionnaire as well as collation time carried out by the Committee Office in handling the responses."
The Committee said that cost may be increase; "should the appetite be for a change" as it would then require "a further cost in drafting appropriate legislation, the cost of which is presently unknown."
Now permission has been given for the public consultation to go ahead, the Committee will have to return to Chief Pleas with a further report and recommendation "once it has collated and studied the responses."
The Committee said it is aware that this proposal does not form part of the list of priorities set for 2018, acknowledging that any work that may arise from this proposal will have to be considered by the Policy Development Group.
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