[Amended 5-16-2011 by Ord. No. 1802]
This article is enacted under authority of § 6109(a)(22) of the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code [75 Pa.C.S.A. § 6109(a)(22)] and gives authority to the City of Warren to remove and impound those vehicles which are parked in a tow-away zone or in violation of parking regulations of this chapter. Vehicles which have been abandoned (as defined by the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code), which are parked in violation of any City ordinance or which are parked in such a manner as to interfere with traffic or pose a hazard to others, may be towed under the provisions of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code.
The City of Warren shall have authority to remove and impound, or to order the removal and impounding, of any vehicle parked overtime or otherwise parked illegally, provided that the circumstances of its parking were within the conditions stated in § 440-75 of this article; provided, however, no such vehicle shall be removed or impounded except in strict adherence to the provisions of this article or the provisions of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code.
Removal and impounding of vehicles under this article shall be done by authorized salvors who have been issued a certificate of authorization in accordance with § 7302 of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code (75 Pa.C.S.A. § 7302), as amended, or by any towing agency whose services have been approved and obtained through the City's Purchasing and Contract Code.
The person removing or directing the removal of any vehicle shall, as soon as practical from the time of the removal of any vehicle, provided that the vehicle has not already been released from the pound, make a report thereof to the City of Warren Police Department or its agent, giving the registration number of the vehicle, the location of the pound to which the vehicle has been removed, and the reason for its removal. The Police Department or its agent shall then send notice to the owner(s) of such vehicle by registered mail, restricted delivery, to the last known address as listed on the vehicle registration, that the same has been impounded, designating the place from which such vehicle was removed, the reason for its removal and impounding, and the pound to which it has been removed. The Police Department shall keep a record of all vehicles impounded and be able, at all reasonable times, to furnish the owners or agents thereof with information as to the place of impounding of the vehicle.
To reclaim a vehicle that has been removed and impounded, the owner shall pay the salvor, the garage and/or the City all towing and storage costs, along with any and all other costs and fees associated with the towing of the vehicle, as set forth in the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code (75 Pa.C.S.A. § 110 et seq., as amended) and any ordinance, rule, regulation or policy of the City, and procure from said owner a release indicating whether or not the payment was made under protest.
In addition to the reclamation costs set forth in § 440-79, the owner shall pay a fine of $50, together with all costs of disposing of the vehicle under provisions of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code, as hereafter amended, supplemented, modified or reenacted by the General Assembly of Pennsylvania, along with any fines established by any City ordinance or fee schedule.
The payment of towing and storage charges shall not relieve the owner or driver of any vehicle from liability for any fine or penalty for the violation of the provision of this chapter for which the vehicle was removed or impounded.
The salvor, if the salvor obtains possession of the vehicle, or the City, if it retains possession of the vehicle, shall then be responsible for filing the proper reports and disposing of the vehicle in accordance with the provisions of the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code (75 Pa.C.S.A. § 110 et seq., as amended).
If, at the expiration of 60 days after mailing of the notice provided for in the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code above, such vehicle is not redeemed by the owner or his agent, the City Manager or its agent shall proceed to sell the same at public auction after first giving notice of such sale by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the City once a week for a period of three weeks before the day fixed for such sale. Such notice, in addition to the time and place of such sale, shall describe the vehicle to be sold with reasonable certainty, giving the manufacturer's trade name and make, motor number and license number and shall state to whom, if anyone, the records of the state of registration show the vehicle to belong. If the name and address of the owner shall be known, the City Council or its authorized representative shall send the owner a copy of said published notice promptly after the first publication of the same. The proceeds of such sale, after the payment of all expenses thereof, shall be paid to the City. At any time within six months after such sale, the former owner of the vehicle sold, upon application to the City Council or its authorized representative and upon presentation of satisfactory proof that he was the owner of said vehicle and the furnishing of such reasonable indemnification bond to the City as the City Council or its authorized representative may require, shall be paid the net balance remaining from such sale as was paid to the City.
No vehicle shall be removed under the authority of this article or under authority of the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code if, at the time of the intended removal, the owner or the person in charge of the vehicle is present and expresses a willingness and intention to remove the vehicle immediately.