In 2018, Washington State Law officially recognized electric-assisted bicycles ("e-bikes"), defining three classes of e-bikes and establishing regulations on shared-use pathways. The State Legislature also allowed local jurisdictions to develop e-bike regulations for soft-surface trails under their care and management.
The Spokane County Code as it relates to park regulations was last updated in 2015 before e-bikes were "a thing." Since that time, e-bikes have become a common sight at County-managed trails. Yet, under the current County Code, certain e-bikes are technically illegal. Therefore, Spokane County, through it's Parks, Recreation & Golf Department, established a public process to develop e-bike regulations that meet the needs of County residents while also balancing other factors such as wildlife, site suitability, safety, and other public concerns.
Project Update (5/14/21): A staff recommendation (see below) for proposed changes to Spokane County Code Chapter 6.14 was presented to the Spokane County Parks Advisory Committee (PAC) in December, 2020. Further action on this issue has been deferred until the Revised of Code of Washington can be amended to provide Spokane County the ability to issue civil infractions (i.e. fines) for code violations.
Estimated Project Timeline: April 2020 -
Public Participation: The online survey was closed in November, 2020 with over 700 responses! See Survey Results Report under the "Documents" section below. A public hearing will likely occur prior to adoption of any code changes. That public hearing date will be posted here once scheduled.