Saturday, April 4, 2009

Oregon Bike Tax Proposal

A rather odd proposal if (1) riding a bike generates positive externalities (in net terms), and/or (2) we live in a second best world where drivers cannot be charged for the full cost of their actions.
Are Bicyclists Free Riders? By Freakonomics .....Do bicyclists contribute their fair share to the transportation network? An Oregon lawmaker thinks not, and has proposed a law requiring cyclists to pay a $54 registration fee every two years. A
Portland bike blog interviewed the lawmaker in question, who explained the proposal this way: “[B]ikes have used the roads in this state forever and have never contributed a penny. The only people that pay into the system are those people who buy motor vehicle licenses and registration fees.” Considering the enormous benefits of investments in bicycle infrastructure, can even a tax-hating bicyclist concede his point, at a registration cost of just over 7 cents a day?

1 comment:

  1. Sinclair DavidsonApril 10, 2009 at 9:33 AM

    How does riding a bike possibly constitute a positive externality? The contribute to congestion on the roads and on footpaths. Their victims have to be treated in both private and public hospitals.