Representative Ed Orcutt (R â€“ Kalama) does not think bicycling is environmentally friendly because the activity causes cyclists to have â€œan increased heart rate and respiration.â€
This is according to comments he made in an email to a constituent who questioned the wisdom of a new bike tax the legislature is considering as part of a large transportation package.
We spoke with Rep. Orcutt to confirm the emailâ€™s authenticity and to get further clarification.
â€œYou would be giving off more CO2 if you are riding a bike than driving in a car,â€ he said. However, he said he had not â€œdone any analysisâ€ of the difference in CO2 from a person on a bike compared to the engine of a car (others have).
Email from Wash. rep. drawing ire from NW bike community
A Washington State Representative who serves as a ranking republican on the State Transportation Committee may be an unlikely proponent of a tax that would require everyone who buys a bike for more than $500 to pay a $25 fee.
His reason for supporting the tax, however, is raising some eyebrows in the Northwest biking community.
Rep. Ed Orcutt (R-Kalama) said in an email to bike shop owner Dale Carlson that, â€œsince CO2 is deemed a greenhouse gas and a pollutant, bicyclists are actually polluting when they ride.â€