Follow us:

Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

December 10, 2008 at 2:43 PM

Tax the cyclists

You can’t catch me

I am continually amazed when I hear proposals such as James F. Vesely’s bike-fee theory [“Impose license fee on King County cyclists,” Times, editorial column, Dec. 7]. Why does no one understand that unenforceable laws are ineffective?

Save costs? Generate revenue?

Who does Vesely think is going to enforce a bike-licensing law and who will pay for that enforcement? Is that how we want our limited law-enforcement officials to be spending their time — pulling over bicyclists and writing tickets when they don’t have a license? Here’s one long-term bicycle commuter who wouldn’t purchase a license if people like you were crazy enough to make it law.

What are you going to do, chase me down the road?

— Ron Rowbotham, Lake Forest Park

Not what you think

I know times are tough, but must The Seattle Times resort to such blatant anti-cyclist blather as Jim F. Vesely’s Sunday opinion?

Car drivers assume that the burdensome gas taxes pay for everything related to roads. The truth is that driving is subsidized to the tune of a dollar per mile. Property taxes and sales taxes pay for local roads. Only a fraction of the Bridging the Gap levy goes toward multimodal transportation.

Regional trails like the Burke-Gilman and Greenlake are heavily used by pedestrians, rollerbladers and joggers.

Vesely and people like him assume that driving a car is normal. He might be surprised to learn that 37 percent of our population doesn’t drive and we spend only 2 percent of our transportation funds to serve them.

It is about time that car drivers paid their fair share. If we included the true cost to society of the people injured by uninsured drivers, air and water-pollution cleanup, and the public lands devoted to free parking, even Vesely would rush to sell his car and buy a bicycle.

— Michael Snyder, Seattle

Comments | More in Transportation

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►