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Bill Summary Details

Towing and Immobilizing Vehicles and Vessels (Oppose – Preemption)

HB 133 (McClain) requires local governments to establish maximum rates for the towing and immobilization of vessels and prohibits a county or municipality from enacting a rule or ordinance that imposes a fee or charge on authorized wrecker operators. The bill provides that an authorized wrecker operator may impose and collect an administrative fee and is required to remit the fee to the county or municipality only after it has been collected. The bill prohibits local governments from adopting or enforcing ordinances or rules that impose fees on the registered owner or lien holder of a vehicle or vessel removed and impounded by an authorized wrecker operator. The bill provides that a wrecker operator who recovers, removes or stores a vehicle or vessel must have a lien on the vehicle or vessel that includes the value of the reasonable administrative fee or charge imposed by a county or municipality. The bill exempts certain counties with towing or immobilization licensing, regulatory or enforcement programs as of January 1, 2020, from the prohibition on imposing a fee or charge on an authorized wrecker operator or on a towing business. The bill prohibits a municipality or county from enacting an ordinance or rule requiring an authorized wrecker operator or towing business to accept credit cards as a form of payment. The bill expressly preempts the regulation of attorney fees in connection with the towing of vehicles or vessels from private property to the state and voids any municipal or county ordinance on the subject. (Cook)