Tax bikes not TV, says US politician

Chicago alderman says cyclists should sit proficiency test too

A cyclist rides along the shores of Lake Michigan, near Chicago

A Chicago politician has suggested a $25 bike tax should be levied on the city’s cyclists as an alternative to a planned increase in TV tax.


Alderman Pat Dowell said earlier this week that the tax would raise millions of dollars for the city and eliminate the need to raise the ‘amusement tax’ on watching TV.

 Dowell, who is described as having ‘an extensive background in urban planning and community’ in her website biography and is a member of the Health and Environmental Protection committee, also wants cyclists to sit a ‘rules of the road’ safety class.

Dowell’s headline-grabbing plans haven’t gained favour with the city’s bike-friendly mayor, Rahm Emmanuel, or with cycling commuters reported the Chicago Tribune.  

“It’s not an accident Google and Motorola decided to move their headquarters where the first protected bike lane went,” Rahm told the paper.


“I’d probably just ignore it,” said a cyclist, Jessica Smith.