A challenge is looming to the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River’s decision to cancel the e-scooter trial permit for Miami-based providers Bird. Information obtained by the Times points to the scooter-for-hire operator engaging a Canberra policy firm to guide it in the wake of May’s council decision. Bird’s e-scooter trial permit was cancelled by the Shire after a 14-day deadline for the operator to argue its case and detail requested changes to its scheme to improve compliance and public safety. That move, backed by the council, followed a deputation from Margaret River police outlining a raft of serious safety concerns. A spokesperson for Bird confirmed it was not taking the permit cancellation laying down, despite the 28-day period to challenge the decision had now passed. “Bird has written to the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River requesting the opportunity to work together to reinstate the micromobility trial,” a spokesperson said. “Bird sees it as a positive that, by identifying challenges early on in the trial period, we have a chance to work with the shire council to adapt and amend the micromobility trial. “Bird has had positive feedback about the program, which has facilitated thousands of trips in the shire of Augusta-Margaret River. “A significant proportion of Bird’s rides have been for repeat, periodic commutes, demonstrating that the aim of a meaningful mode shift away from cars towards micromobility is being achieved.” The Times understands Bird has engaged a Canberra-based policy firm to provide advice amid concerns the Shire’s ruling could affect its Eastern States operations, though the company has denied this was the case. Previously, Margaret River police Officer-in-Charge Simone Taplin claimed the scooters were deeply unpopular with residents. She said the 12-month trial was for adults only, but under-age teenagers appeared to be the most frequent users, flouting helmet regulations and using credit cards to bypass age controls. Shire Chief Executive Officer Stephanie Addison-Brown said the final decision was communicated to Bird. “Shire staff spoke with Bird again as a courtesy after the decision to further clarify the position of council and to advise that only fully-compliant applications from operators would be eligible for consideration into the future, and that any further trials would still be at council’s discretion,” she said. Last week, the City of Busselton-endorsed operator Neuron Mobility, who had conducted their own research from which the company claimed found 99 per cent of users believed e-scooters made a positive impact in the first six months of its program.