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Published on Friday, February 2, 2018

Bill seeks to address disposal costs of abandoned recreational vehicles on public property

SB 6437/HB 2925, Sen. Curtis King (R-Yakima)/Rep. Jake Fey (D-Tacoma), would set up a program within the Department of Licensing that would provide financial assistance to tow-truck operators in situations where they recover abandoned recreational vehicles on public property. The monies would be generated through a fee on recreational vehicle registrations. The bill would also allow registered tow truck operators to transport an abandoned recreational vehicle to a solid waste disposal site without being licensed as a hulk hauler.

Currently, tow-truck operators who are summoned to retrieve an abandoned recreational vehicle are required to tow the vehicle regardless of condition. Frequently, these vehicles are in disarray, and may be contaminated. While they are entitled to levy fines on the owner of the vehicle, owners of abandoned vehicles frequently are unable to pay for the costs of retrieval and/or cannot be found. In recent years, tow-truck operators have experienced an uptick in requests for retrievals.

As cities experience an uptick of abandonment of recreational vehicles on our properties, we support measures that ensure the safe disposal of these vehicles and do not create an undue financial burden on local governments. SB 6437 received a public hearing in the Senate Transportation Committee on January 29. The House version is scheduled for public hearing on February 6 in the House Transportation Committee.

Categories: Transportation
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