Individuals who illegally park in private lots should prepare to pay the consequences. On Aug. 26, Tallahassee commissioners voted and approved to increase the maximum trespassing tow fee from $88 to $110. The last time commissioners pushed the price from $80 to $88 was in 2005.
Fourth-year elementary education student, Danielle McCloud, quickly parked her car behind Gore Education Building to take an assignment to her professor. Fifteen minutes later, she walked outside and her car was gone.
“Literally, I went to turn in my assignment. I came back outside to find that my car had been towed,” McCloud said.
In addition, Tallahassee has also increased the storage fee per day for keeping cars and the administrative fees associated with mailing car owners. Tallahassee is now added to the class of more than a dozen Florida municipalities that charge over $100 dollars in towing fees.
“I didn’t realize they raised the price of towing until I got to the towing facility. This is unnecessary being that this is a college town,” McCloud said.
Towing prices are set by the city. This is done to protect citizens from outrageous prices and hidden towing fees from less than reputable towing companies.
“Tow-a-ways are increased at night. From 7-11 p.m. there is a $30 increase. During this time there is no business for me.” said Jeff Hobbs, an employee at Ability Towing LLC.
Alan Hale, manager of Ability Towing LLC said, “I don’t do a lot of tow-a-ways. I assign my employees to do them for my company. There has not been an increase or decline within our facility since the increase.”
Ability Towing, LLC does not only depend on tow-a-ways, but they manage breakdowns and other car troubles that target the Tallahassee area. Even though tow-a-ways help their company and bring in revenue, they do not rely on this increase to help increase the company.
“I feel that the towing raise was not a good idea. I preferred the price at $88 dollars because we had a lot more business. On an average, I would tow about 88 cars a week. Now I only tow about 40 a week,” said Hale.
The increase is intended to help the small companies here in the Tallahassee area.