Ann Arbor, Washtenaw Tow Together

A goal for the city’s financial services unit, which is listed out in the fiscal year 2013 budget book, was met at the Ann Arbor city council’s Aug. 20, 2012 meeting: collaboration with Washtenaw County to centralize the administration of public towing. Parking on someone’s private property or having as excessive number of parking tickets are examples of this kind of situation.

Currently, the city contracts with three different companies, in three districts of the city: Brewers Towing Inc., Sakstrup’s Towing, and Triangle Towing. But those contracts expire at the end of 2012.

The council’s Aug. 20 resolution authorizes the city to contract with Washtenaw County, which will administer the towing under a single contract. The city will share responsibility for various aspects of the towing administration. On the city’s side, the existing manual, paper-based system will be replaced with one that uses CLEMIS (Courts and Law Enforcement Management Information System) and e-impound.

The new approach is also supposed to reduce costs to those who have their cars towed – because outside storage fees of $20/day would no longer be assessed immediately when a vehicle arrives at the storage lot. Instead, the new city/county fee structure would not permit application of a storage fee until a vehicle has been stored for at least eight hours. [.pdf of fee schedule]

The city will point to this collaboration with the county as part of the state’s economic vitality incentive program (EVIP), which encourages municipalities to demonstrate efforts at collaboration with each other.

This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]