The More Things Change…

August 2, 2016

To paraphrase the French critic, journalist, and novelist Jean-Baptiste Alphone Karr, “The more things change, the more they remain the same.”

In the wake of changes reflected in recent legislation requiring that all scooters / mopeds registered in North Carolina now carry liability insurance (House Bill 148), many are wondering how this will be enforced (if at all) at UNC. UNC holds the legal, legitimate operation of moped / scooter to be “self-evident,” in that operators of any vehicle with valid parking at UNC—from a cars to a scooters—must already have provided proof of insurance and registration. (See Section 3-18 of the UNC Parking Ordinance)

Yes, for about 28,000 moped owners in North Carolina, laws over the past two years mean a bit more paperwork, but the majority of mopeds and scooters operating at UNC are already in compliance with North Carolina State Laws.

This is not to say that owners can’t be cited at UNC. UNC Transportation and Parking can and will cite those parking without a permit or in non-designated spots (i.e., disability access-ways) and report unregistered vehicles to UNC Police. And police officers may not specifically target violators, but they can and will cite scooter / moped operators without registration when given probable cause (i.e., if an unregistered scooter is involved in traffic stop or a collision)—much the same way UNC Police would cite any unregistered vehicle.

Still the nearly 400 students and employees with valid UNC moped / scooter parking permits (who have already insured and registered their vehicle) will not notice any differences as a result of new laws, and that means keeping the “change” in their pockets.

 

Randy Young

UNC Media Relations

UNC Police/Transportation & Parking