The Washington departments of Fish and Wildlife and Natural Resources are seeking public input on electric-assist bicycling, or e-biking, on the lands its manages as part of a process directed by Senate Bill 5452, a bill that passed the state Legislature in 2021.
Members of the public are invited to two virtual meetings scheduled for 12:30 to 2 p.m. Thursday and 5:30 to 7 p.m. May 18. The departments are also taking feedback through an online survey, available in English and Spanish, through July 15, according to a news release.
WDFW and DNR will report findings from this process to the Legislature by Sept. 30. These findings will inform future processes for local decision making about the use of e-bikes on WDFW and DNR-managed lands.
“E-bikes are increasingly popular in Washington state and across the country,” said Heide Andersen, WDFW recreation planner in a statement. “Public input and research on best practices will guide how we manage e-biking on state-managed lands while protecting wildlife, habitat, cultural and tribal resources.”
DNR and WDFW allow e-biking on roads and trails open to motorized vehicles. Visitors carrying a valid Americans with Disabilities Act parking placard for their vehicles can use class 1 and 2 e-bikes on all trails and roads where bikes are allowed. More information about the different e-bike classes is available on the land managers’ websites.
“DNR is working in close collaboration with our partners at WDFW to ensure our e-bike policies are closely aligned and consistent. DNR values public input on e-bikes and will use public comments to craft common sense polices that enrich recreational opportunities for all public land users,” Andrea Martin, the statewide recreation manager for DNR, said in a statement.
Members of the public who have limited or no internet connections may call the Wildlife Program Customer Service Desk at 360-902-2515 to request a print version of the survey.
Written comments may be mailed to: Wildlife Program, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, PO Box 43200, Olympia, WA 98504.
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