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$5,000 fine imposed on e-bike seller

287 Broome Street in Manhattan. Image Credit: CityLaw.

Shop in lower Manhattan offered electric bikes for sale. Arrow Ebikes, Inc, located on 287 Broome Street in Manhattan, specializes in selling and servicing electric bikes (e-bikes). On November 23, 2015, a Department of Consumer Affairs officer observed Arrow Ebikes displaying ten e-bikes for sale. E-bikes are considered motorized scooters because they are a wheeled device with handlebars and are powered by an electric motor. (See City Law Volume 22, Number 1). The officer issued a summons charging Arrow Ebikes with violating New York City Administration Code Section 20-762, which provides that no person shall sell or attempt to sell a motorized scooter to another person. The summons charged ten counts, one for each motorized scooter.

At the hearing, the OATH hearing officer ruled that although each e-bike was its own violation according to the code, the summons failed to alert Arrow Ebikes that a separate penalty would be assessed for each of the ten e-bikes observed. The hearing officer upheld a single violation and imposed a fine of $1,000.

Consumer Affairs appealed the dismissal of the other nine charges. The OATH Appeals Unit ruled that the evidence established that five e-bikes were actually for sale and the remaining five e-bikes had not yet been assembled. Accordingly, the Appeals Unit imposed a civil penalty of $1,000 for each of the five assembled e-bikes, for a total civil penalty of $5,000.

DCA v. Arrow Ebikes. Inc., OATH Appeal No. 05384822 (Aug. 8, 2017). CityADMIN

By: Danielle Hendler (Danielle is a student at New York Law School, Class of 2019)