Improperly Parked Bikes To Be Impounded Under New Pomona Policy

Bicycles that are not parked on bike racks or in student rooms will be impounded under a new Pomona policy that goes into effect April 16. The Student Affairs Committee (SAC) proposed the policy last fall and voted to approve it March 26.

new policy states that if bicycles are not locked to bike racks or kept
in students’ rooms, the Pomona College Facilities
Department will cut the locks and impound them without notice. If the bicycles are not claimed within two weeks of impoundment, they will
be donated to Green Bikes, a student-run bicycle shop that raffles
complimentary bicycles for students to borrow each semester. There is no pick-up fine included in the new policy.

policy change was proposed to all Pomona students last November in an
e-mail sent by Vice President and Dean of Students Miriam Feldblum on
behalf of SAC. The proposal drew
criticism from some students, and a protest at the Smith Campus Center, titled “Lockupy SCC,” was planned. The organizers of Lockupy later called off the protest and replaced it with a celebratory bike ride.  

The old bike policy in the Student Handbook
states that bicycles not locked to bike racks or kept in students’
rooms will be removed by Housekeeping, stored
for a short period of time and, if unclaimed, ultimately be
disposed of. Under the current policy, repeated violations
result in a $100 fine for the bike owner.

“Technically Housekeeping has the authority to remove bikes now, but they haven’t
been doing so,” said Associated Students of Pomona College President
Nate Brown PO ’12, a member of SAC. “The all-student e-mails helped served the
purpose of notifying students that after April 16 they can probably no
longer get away locking their bike to emergency railings, trees.”

the proposal, SAC held a 30-day comment period, a
standard practice designed to involve student
input, during which the committee received comments from more than 30 students, professors and staff members. The majority of these comments
expressed concern over the need to have more bike racks installed on
campus before the implementation of the policy, Feldblum said.

policy has been a little unusual because there was so much
feedback when we initially sent it out to the students,” said ASPC
Vice President and SAC member Leslie Appleton PO ’12.
“We tried to address all of those concerns, and we’ve worked really
hard with the facilities to try to install more bike racks in places
where students suggested to address that need because absolutely there
was a shortage of bike racks on campus.”

policy changes that were enacted after the initial proposal included a
U-Lock subsidy program that was inaugurated last November by ASPC and
Student Affairs through the Coop Store, and various
changes in the policy’s language.

when we opened the comments period there was a lot of backlash,”
Appleton said. “When we conceived the policy, we decided to do an
impounding system that would force students to pay
a fee if their bike was impounded, but we’ve taken that out.”

New bike racks have been installed on South Campus, near the Smith
Campus Center, at Pomona Hall and by Seaver North. A bike rack location
map illustrating these additions was created
and sent out to all Pomona students by e-mail.

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