Los Angeles Welcomes Its Scooter Overlords

This is a fancy concept scooter from MINI, shot against the LA skyline from Dodger Stadium. The yellow thing on the left is a car, soon to be obsolete.MINI USA

The city of Los Angeles has decided to approve the use of scooters within city limits, accompanied by a rather astonishing set of regulations. But at least the poor will benefit, I guess:

The companies will be limited to 3,000 scooters or bikes anywhere in the city, but can deploy up to 2,500 more in low-income areas, and an additional 5,000 vehicles in low-income neighborhoods of the San Fernando Valley.

It doesn’t appear that the scooters have to cost any less in low-income areas, they just have to exist. Is this the kind of help that our low-income workers really need? More scooters? I dunno, but several council members who represent poor districts seemed pretty taken with the idea. We’ll see.

BTW, the speed limit is 15 mph and there’s no riding on sidewalks. “We cannot regulate stupidity,” said councilmember Joe Buscaino.


We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.