Hammond May Increase Tow Fees

City towing fees may increase in Hammond, Ind. if an ordinance is passed next month by its town council.

Currently, the standard towing fee is $125; with passage of the ordinance, it will raise to $180. However, the fees paid by the city to towers will remain the same. The additional $55 will go to Hammond's general municipal fund to help offset a $20 million loss in property tax revenue. Hammond currently has four towing companies operating without a contract.

Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. stated that revenues from towing represents over one million dollars worth of business to the city. Mayor McDermott also questioned whether the city would be better off handling the tows itself. He said currently there is a proposal where Hammond would operate its own tow service; or possibly provide a hybrid where the towing companies would tow vehicles and the city would provide storage.

Source: www.nwitimes.com

Tower Wins Lot Increase

Randy's Auto Service and Towing Orange, Va. was recently approved by the city's supervisory board to increase the size of his storage lot to up to 50 vehicles. The approval was granted as a result of an amendment to an existing special-use permit. Through the amendment, Randy's will also be allowed to construct an addition to the garage, an additional storage building, and a parking structure for a tow truck.

Randolph Hoffman, owner of the business, had told the town's supervisors that he needed the extra space to increase his business. He obtained a special-use permit in 2006 to operate his public garage on agriculturally zoned land less than 10 miles southeast of the town of Orange. However, that permit limited the number of vehicles on the property to 25.

Several neighboring residents and organizations spoke in support of Hoffman to help bolster his efforts. One supporter went as far as saying that Randy's "has one of the neatest garages" and "provides a valuable service to the community."

Source: http://news.fredericksburg.com
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Low-Profile V-Bridle

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By Don Lomax
Spotlight's On You!

What will it take for towing professionals to get better press?
1) I don't see anything wrong with the press we get.
2) It begins with us, and we need to clean up our act.
3) The state associations need to submit positive news about the work we do.
4) Industry publications could do more to present our industry in a better light.
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Getting In Front

Right now, the towing industry is on the cusp of garnering unprecedented respect from other emergency responder agencies and organizations nationwide. More inclusion, as evidenced by the Federal Traffic Incident Management trainings that have taken place across the country, is proof that towing is gaining respect as emergency response on a higher level.

But something keeps holding the industry back. There have been efforts to get laws changed that affect the industry; but most have been fragmented at best. This fragmentation has led the industry to be reactive rather than proactive, most of the time.

Perhaps some credence should be given to a recent American Towman Magazine editorial piece that suggests that a full-time lobbyist in Washington would keep the interests of the towing industry front and center. With an increased presence on the national level, perhaps the industry could finally become proactive, and take advantage of the light that other emergency responder agencies are seen in.

It's the industry's opportunity to lead ... rather than follow.

--Charles Duke
Investigative Report on Indiana's Move Over Law
A TV station in Indiana sends their investigative reporter out with Towmen and Police to see just how many drivers ignore the Move Over Law. Hear from amputee Wayne Aughenbaugh, Former Operator for Indy Towing Service in Indianapolis, IN & JR Cook of Cook’s Towing Service in Indianapolis, IN & Shana Kennedy, Indiana State Police Master Trooper. This video is brought to you by Towlot.com, the site that makes your profitable online vehicle auctions a snap.
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