EMPORIA (KSNT) – Emporia has taken the first steps toward allowing electric scooters downtown.

The City of Emporia and Bird Rides, Inc. have created a Memorandum of Understanding to provide scooters and clear the way for the scooters to be allowed to be driven on the city’s sidewalks.

According to the agreement, scooters will be governed by the “rules applying to bicycles.” The scooters are to be driven on the streets and, where available, in bike lanes and bike paths.

The scooters will be available to rent from 4 a.m. to midnight, for those over 18 years old.

Riders will have to download an app to use the scooter, which requires the rider to consent to the rules. The scooters cost $1.00 to start and then a per-minute fee.

Initially Emporia will get 50 scooters.

The Emporia Police Chief will have the authority to decide where the scooters can be parked.

The memorandum states that the stand-up scooters will not block any street, alley, sidewalk , or public path. City officials will retain the right to remove any scooter that has become a nuisance.

Bird rides, the company that owns the scooters, will provide the City of Emporia with proof of insurance for the stand-up scooters.