Council to hear proposal to continue towing overhaul


The City of Indianapolis appears ready to take another step toward eliminating the problem of predatory towing.

The issue of towing companies taking legally parked cars for no reason and tow trucks coming for cars that have no affiliation with the lot you parked in has prompted a number of changes already. The city already dealt with the immediate problem following an Eyewitness News investigation.

Now, the city is on the verge of taking the next step.

"This is just the next step in overhauling towing, holistically. So we're really looking at how we manage our current contracts with vendors and looking to get somebody that can do that the best way possible," said Kate Johnson, Department of Code Enforcement. "Because right now, there are up to 13 contracts that could be out there, it's not as efficient as it could be, so we are trying to make it more efficient, effective for citizens and just easy."

Under a proposal already headed to the full council for action on Monday, towing lots would have to be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and the city would be able to use references and past complaints in awarding the contract. In the past, when towing was only a commodity, it had to take the lowest bid. This new proposal brings towing into the world of technology.

"So that people could actually get online and figure out where their vehicle is, redeem their vehicle and pay online. Make sure that their payments are accepted in credit card and some of the other functions we aren't able to consider right now, just via the bidding mechanism," Johnson said.

So a lot can change when a commodity becomes a service.