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Bill targets 'predatory tow truck companies'

Bill targets 'predatory tow truck companies'

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- State lawmakers are debating more regulation of tow trucks in Ohio.

Just days after the Ohio Supreme Court allowed cities to override state's tow truck regulations, two members of the Ohio House are looking to put new measures in place to protect people who have their vehicles towed.

House Bill 382 would targeting what the bill's supporters describe as "predatory tow truck abuse" for non-consensual towing.

"You would only be allow a statutory limit fee and we'll try to determine what that price is going to be. It's probably going to be something smaller than what the median fee is right now in the state of Ohio," said Rep. Mike Duffey, a Republican from Worthington.

Duffey's co-sponsor on the bill is Rep. Heather Bishoff, a Democrat from Blacklick. The bill would also prohibit fees not associated with towing or storage for less than 24 hours. It also mandates that cars can only be towed for parking illegally within 25 miles of a storage facility and tow truck operators must provide a photograph of the illegally parked vehicle.

Businesses that operate private lots would have to list on a sign who is allowed to park there.

Under current state law, towing fees are capped at $90, but Duffey says that companies often add on things like storage fees and hooking fees to hike that price up to more than $140.

A state association for tow truck operators opposes the bill. The Towing and Recovery Association of Ohio says it's a Columbus-are problem that isn't being seen in other parts of the state.

The bill gets its first hearing before a House committee at 4pm Wednesday.

(Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

 

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