From the Missourian
COLUMBIA — A bicyclist harassment ordinance passed unanimously at the City Council meeting Monday after nearly an hour and a half of debate.
The ordinance makes harassment of bicyclists — including throwing objects, verbal assault and other offenses — a misdemeanor offense punishable by a $1,000 fine or one year of jail time, the council said.
After the lengthy testimony from citizens and discussion by the council, the ordinance passed with plans to amend it at the July 20 City Council meeting. At that time, the ordinance will be expanded to include other types of pedestrian traffic.
The delay in a decision was due to debate over who should be covered under the harassment ordinance. Some council members felt the ordinance should be more broad and encompass other types of pedestrian traffic, while others thought protecting bicyclists was important now and the rest could be added later.
Many in the bicycling community showed up to voice their feelings about the ordinance. Twenty individuals, some with children in tow, lined up to wait for their turn at the microphone. All 20 supported the ordinance.
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