• Sun June 29 2008
  • Posted Jun 29, 2008
BY JARED STRONG Adel, Ia. – The Dallas County supervisors delayed action today on a proposed ordinance that would require liability insurance for any organized bicycle ride with more than 20 riders. Dozens of people attended a public hearing this morning to protest the proposal. Several rode their bicycles from the State Capitol to show their commitment to the cause. “You’re totally overreacting to this issue,” said Kim West, who hosts a local cycling radio show on KXNO. “It’s your job to make safe roads ... Do your job. That’s all you have to do.” The proposal, written by the Iowa State Association of Counties in response to a 2004 RAGBRAI fatality, would require the sponsors of any qualifying bicycle event to maintain a $1 million liability insurance policy that also covers the county. Violators would face fines of at least $750. County officials say the ordinance is needed to protect county taxpayers from lawsuits – Crawford County’s insurance company paid $350,000 to the widow of a man who died after he was thrown from his bicycle in the 2004 Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa when his bicycle struck a gap in the county-maintained road. Cycling enthusiasts say the requirement would hinder cycling clubs and charity fundraisers that can’t afford to pay for the insurance. After more than an hour of discussion, the board of supervisors voted to continue the public hearing to a future meeting. “I need to investigate some of these things,” Supervisor Brad Golightly said of the arguments made by cyclists during the meeting. The ordinance would have to pass three votes to be adopted.

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