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Acting Governor Nick Scutari was at the Jersey Shore to sign a law on Saturday that will regulate the operation of pedicabs and allow pedicab passengers 21 and older to consume alcoholic beverages.

The legislation, S1505 / A462, which will take effect Oct. 1, was sponsored by Senators Vin Gopal and Linda Greenstein in the Senate and Assemblymen Joe Danielsen and Clinton Calabrese in the Assembly.

Senate President Scutari, who was serving as acting governor while the governor and lieutenant governor were out of state, highlighted the signing at an event Saturday afternoon at Robinson’s Ale House in Asbury Park.

NJBIA Chief Government Affairs Officer Chrissy Buteas, Eileen Kean of the National Federation of Independent Businesses, and Jesse Pomeroy, owner of Asbury Pedalcycle, also spoke in support of the new law.

“Pedicabs offer the opportunity to create a new business sector that will breathe added life into local economies,” Scutari said. “This will give pedicab operators every chance to succeed under a safe, well-regulated environment.”

The law is designed to help pedicab operators thrive and to give New Jersey residents and visitors the opportunity to enjoy an outdoor, small group leisure activity that is well-regulated. Until now, New Jersey law did not allow passengers to drink alcohol while riding in pedicabs.

“This new law will allow our local small businesses such as pedicabs to compete and continue to prosper within the hospitality industry,” said Senator Gopal. “Pedicabs are mom-and-pop small businesses and our support for this growing small-business sector is important.”

The law defines a “pedicab” as a wheeled device that contains three or more wheels, operates manually with pedals, transports passengers for hire, and accommodates no more than 15 passengers.

“Pedicabs are a fresh and new way to help our local businesses thrive, to support and alleviate some of the impacts New Jersey business owners still face from the COVID-19 Pandemic,” said Senator Greenstein. “Permitting alcoholic consumption for passengers on pedicabs is a great way to promote downtown nightspots and other businesses safely.”

Under the law, pedicabs will be able to operate under the following conditions:

  • The pedicab has been authorized to operate by ordinance of its municipality
  • The operator must be 21 years old and possess a driver’s license
  • The vehicle is equipped with seatbelts, brakes, reflectors, headlights, and grab rails
  • The operator of the pedicab cannot drive on roadways with speed limits in excess of 30 miles per hour.

Under the law, the operator of the pedicab will not be allowed to consume alcoholic beverages while operating the vehicle, nor could the owner or operator sell passengers food, alcoholic beverages or any other liquid refreshments.

Alcoholic beverages allowed on the pedicab will be limited to single-serving, sealed containers of beer; wine; hard cider; mead, other malt beverages; other fermented beverages, such as hard seltzer and hard tea; and prepared mixed beverages made with spirits. Each passenger of a pedicab must be at least 21 years old.

“As our economy continues to recover from the pandemic, it’s critical to give small business owners like pedicab operators every opportunity to grow their businesses and succeed,” said Assemblyman Joe Danielsen. “This new law will provide much needed guidance for their operations to protect both the driver and passengers.”

The new law brings New Jersey into alignment with other states that allow alcohol on board pedicabs, including California, North Carolina, and Louisiana.