This week, MTAC President Joe Sculley testified in opposition to a bill that would add a $10 surcharge on to the cost of a non-consensual tow.
Sculley said that the bill is an attempt to circumvent the regulation of rates for non-consensual tows. He said that the regulation of non-consensual tows is an important aspect of consumer protection for both individuals and small businesses who own and operate vehicles. Without this, wreckers have been known to charge tens of thousands of dollars for non-consensual tows and subsequent storage, although some have referred to these as ransom charges rather than storage charges. It should be noted that this type of situation is sometimes the cause of an abandoned vehicle, whether it be a passenger vehicle, or commercial motor vehicle or commercial trailer. Owners may decide that it is less expensive to just go purchase a new vehicle.
Some of the excessive charges that have been seen are driven by an attitude that the insurance company will pay for it, rather than the individual or small business owner. All that this does is drive up the cost of insurance for everybody, regardless of whether or not the policy holder will ever be a part of a non-consensual tow.
A PDF copy of the written testimony is available.