[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Wallingford 9-30-1993 by Ord. No. 414. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Tow Truck Ordinance." Further, this chapter shall apply to those towers doing business for and on behalf of the Town of Wallingford Police Department on the Police Department Rotation List. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as affecting the servicing or repair of any bus or commercial carriers which are normally serviced by their own specially equipped tow vehicles.
Definitions. For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meaning given herein:
- CHIEF OF POLICE
- The Chief of Police or his appointed designee.
- Any person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind.
- A person engaged in the business or offering vehicle towing services with the type and number of vehicles specified in the regulations adopted hereunder, and duly licensed by the State of Connecticut, and whose application has been approved pursuant to this chapter and the rules and regulations adopted hereunder.
- The Town of Wallingford Police Department.
Word usage. When not inconsistent within the context, words used in the present tense include the future, words in the plural number include the singular number and words in the singular number include the plural number. The word "shall" is always mandatory and not merely directory.
No tower shall be placed on the police rotation list of approved towers for the Town Police Department without first filing an application and obtaining approval as hereinafter provided from the Chief of Police, subject to the provisions contained herein and the regulations adopted hereunder. Towers may be subject to inspections to verify ongoing compliance with this chapter and the regulations hereunder.
Applications for inclusion on the police rotation list shall be made upon forms prepared and made available by the Police Department and shall include such information deemed necessary by the Chief of Police, including but not limited to: a notarized agreement wherein the tower shall agree to protect, indemnify and save harmless the Town of Wallingford, its servants, agents and employees of and from any and all liability or claims of liability, expense damages, causes of action, suits, claims or judgments on the part of anyone growing out of any act or omission by said tower or of any performance of duties or obligations by said towers; and an insurance policy(s) as further specified under the regulations.
The Chief of Police shall approve such application upon determining that the applicant has complied with this chapter, its rules and regulations, the provisions of the Connecticut General Statutes, Revision of 1958, as amended, applicable to said business, and is duly licensed by the State of Connecticut. Further, the Chief of Police may consider the amount of experience, length of operation of the company and the needs of the Police Department in deciding to issue approval.
Towers presently on the rotation list(s) are not required to reapply but shall comply with this chapter and the regulations adopted hereunder within 12 months of the enactment of this chapter. All towers must be in compliance with this chapter and the regulations in order to remain on the rotation list(s).
All persons issued approval pursuant to § 207-5 hereof shall be required to display, at all times, at the tower's place of business, a notice related to its towing privilege, and the town's fee structure, together with any information deemed necessary and in a format specified by the Chief of Police in the Towing Regulations.
The Chief of Police shall revoke a tower's approval and suspend or remove such a person from the tow rotation list whenever he finds that the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder have been violated. The Chief of Police shall prescribe a suspension and revocation procedure in the regulations. If the ownership of the towing business changes, the approval automatically expires. The approval shall not expire if the tower maintains ownership of the business and solely changes the structure of the business (i.e., corporation).
If the Chief of Police removes a tower from the list, the tower may appeal the decision to the hearing officer(s) appointed to hear parking violation appeals within 14 days of the decision. The hearing officer shall hear the appeal within a reasonable time, but not to exceed 90 days. While the appeal is pending, the tower shall remain indefinitely suspended. The decision of the hearing officer(s) may be appealed by either party to the Town Council within 14 days of the decision of the hearing officer(s). The Town Council must hear the appeal within 30 days. While the appeal is pending, the tower shall remain indefinitely suspended. The decision of the Town Council is final and shall be binding on all parties.
The Chief of Police shall have the power to:
Set fees for towing and storage for violations of the Town Parking Ordinance, subject to approval by the Town Council.
Permit persons the right to request their own tower subject to the section of the rules and regulations applicable to such circumstances.
Establish separate towing lists for regular and heavy duty towing services as defined in the regulations.
Rotate towing services among the towers on the towers rotation list consistent with the capacity and capability of each tower, the needs of the town, the legal concerns, needs and efficiency of the Police Department and the protection of the public, and may design and use a rotation system for assigning specific types of towing work on behalf of the town, with the exception of police vehicles and vehicles seized or impounded for investigatory purposes, which may be put out to bid by the Police Department or assigned to a particular tower in accordance with this chapter and regulations relating thereto.
When deemed necessary, may assign a particular tower to a particular assignment; if a particular tower is assigned a tow out of rotation (with the exception of owner's request, police vehicles or vehicles seized or impounded for investigatory purposes), the tower so summoned shall be considered to have utilized his/her next rotation call.
Designate a police supervisor to assist in the administration of this chapter and its rules and regulations.
The Chief of Police shall, subject to Town Council approval, prepare and enforce reasonable rules and regulations for towers which may be changed from time to time as deemed necessary and may include, but not be limited to, regulations governing qualifications, approval, performance, suspension and removal of any tower.
Nothing contained herein or in the regulations made hereunder shall create anything other than a vendor-vendee relationship between the Police Department and the tower. No contractual relationship is created or intended by this chapter and/or its regulations.
It shall be unlawful for any tower with or without said required approval to go to any scene of an accident with the intent to solicit repair or tow work. Any tower who violates this section shall be subject to a fine not to exceed $100.