During the last Finance Committee meeting at City Hall, Wednesday, March 19th, the Councilmen, Department Heads and representatives of the participating towing companies came to an agreement on a rate increase for City summoned towing services.
The City of Kingston doesn’t have its own towing service so we utilize several local operators to remove disabled or seized vehicles. These companies are on a rotation call-in list and are in full compliance with the City and State regulations required.
The rate for storage at the operator’s place of business was the key motivator. At $8 per day, the temptation to let it sit for weeks causes a work space problem on site.
The rate for storage will now be $35 per day, so car and truck owners are warned that the bill will be staggering if you procrastinate.
Fees for all forms of towing will see a hike as well…daytime car tows from $65 to $100 and night towing from $85 to $150. This will put Kingston in the same fee schedule as Ulster.
Here is the killer issue: ABANDONMENT. People sometimes abandon their car. It takes a month to file the paperwork to render a vehicle junk and get $100 out of it at the crusher. The next logical step is to attach the fees accrued by the operator to the owner of the vehicle, rendering him/her liable.
Everyone has a Social Security Number, right? Make it impossible to get a job, rent an apartment or another car with a judgment against your Social Security Number.
In this throw-away society, we see an ever increasing trend in a lack of responsibility and the burden is usually on the taxpayer. I will work with Law Enforcement and Corporation Council to see what is available to the Council as a means to fix this problem.
And thank you Tim Halpern for keeping this issue alive.