New York, NY – New York will retain the power to tow parking scofflaws’ cars after Albany officials negotiated an amendment to a bill that could have put in jeopardy the city’s towing program.
News of the amendment—which must be approved by the state Senate and introduced in the Assembly—came just hours after Mayor Michael Bloomberg blasted the idea.
“I can’t imagine a worse bill,” he said at a Monday news conference on heating oil. “This is a bill that will kill people for a start.”
He continued: “If nobody follows the parking restrictions because they know their car’s not going to get towed away, they’ll start parking in front of fire hydrants, firefighters can’t get the water they need. They’ll be parking in intersections. The seniors who have trouble walking around them won’t be able to get across the street at the intersection, will have to go mid block.”
Sponsored by state Sen. Eric T. Schneiderman, a Manhattan Democrat who is making a bid for state attorney general, the proposal added motor vehicles of a certain value to property exempt from judgments and bankruptcy and increased the value of other exempt valuables, such as houses and jewelry.
The goal was to protect individuals facing a financial crisis from losing their last valuables to creditors. But the bill also would have prevented creditors such as municipalities from seizing cars worth $4,000 or less after outstanding loans.
New York City tows the cars of individuals who have more than $350 in parking tickets.
According to a letter protesting the bill sent to Gov. David Paterson last week, the city tows 120,000 vehicles a year, collecting about $50 million. The average sale price of the vehicles sold at auction in the past six months is less than $1,000, the letter said.
The chapter amendment introduced in the Senate on Monday would exempt city and state agencies that are creditors.
Mr. Schneiderman’s legislative director, Justin Berhaupt, said the effect on the city’s towing program was an unintended consequence. “Once we learned that the city had issues with it, we worked with them immediately to modify it so that its intent remains the same, while any unintended consequences are averted,” he said. “We are glad we achieved a win-win solution that works for all parties.”
Mr. Bloomberg seemed perplexed at the morning news conference, alluding to Mr. Schneiderman’s ambitions for statewide office.
“The only possible rationale for it is a campaign thing and it’s a disgrace,” he said.
Mr. Bloomberg is supporting Staten Island District Attorney Dan Donovan, a Republican, in his candidacy for state attorney general.
Four hours later, the fury had dissipated.
Micah Lasher, Mr. Bloomberg’s director of state legislative affairs, issued a joint statement with Mr. Berhaupt.
“We are pleased to report that we have reached agreement on a chapter amendment to the legislation that ensures the City’s successful scofflaw towing program will remain intact,” the statement said.
Police cars park at hydrants and bus stops for no reason at all, why don’t they get ticketed?? They are only stopping to go to the bank or buy a cup of coffee and if we did that we would get a ticket!! What’s the difference??
Hello Bloomy. if he’s doing it even for campaigning, that would mean that his constituents are for it! if not they dont vote for him. and NO you arent the only one that knows what common sense is. ticketing the poor, is your common sense, but the public knows its wrong. abolishing term limits, is your common sense (based on your greed for attention or honor if you want to term it in a nicer way) but t any normal mind with common sense, it’s just a campaign run by buying votes, and a mayor paying for his way to win election, and votes thereafter in the state congress senate, city officials etc. BUM GET OUT!
Go Schneiderman go!!!
not sure I agree… If bank lends me money they can’t collect but city can collect on fines?
Either you owe and everyone can collect or no one can collect. Same weird policy with bankruptcy, you walk away from all debt except for IRS
So why are there communities that are hardly ticketed. When I drive from williamsburgh to flatbush there are a counless number of vehicles on Nostran Ave. which are double parked. There is not even one ticket agent around. Is that not a political phenomena?
“New York City tows the cars of individuals who have more than $350 in parking tickets.”
That’s a BLATANT LIE!!!! They tow you for much less than that!! “Sedom” could have learned some tips from bloomy…….
I can’t imagine a worse bill,” he said at a Monday news conference on heating oil. “This is a bill that will kill people for a start.”
He continued: “If nobody follows the parking restrictions because they know their car’s not going to get towed away,THE CITY WILL LOSE MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN FINES and they’ll start parking in front of fire hydrants, firefighters can’t get the water they need. They’ll be parking in intersections AND ON ROOF TOPS. The seniors who have trouble walking around them won’t be able to get across the street at the intersection, will have to go mid block.” OHI VEI SCHMO BLUMBERG
even though i’m a registered republican, i would vote for Schneiderman… Bloomberg has his priorities wrong… He may be a successful business mogul but he has no idea of the effects of his dictatorship on the working class of this city… I can’t afford living here, i can’t afford to move…
I can’t believe that Schneiderman took time off from pushing his non-sensical bill calling for micro-stamping of all new semi-automatic pistols sold in NYS to push this equally non-sensical towing bill.. No other state has adopted this stupid proposal because the technology doesn’t work and gun manufacturers will simply not ship any new guns into NYS, including to police departments. This Uber-Liberal probably wants exactly that, leaving all honest people defenseless before the criminal class. As for towing, sorry, but I am all for it! Without the fear of big fines and towing to deter those who feel they are above the law, this city would be impassable. Obey the law and you will not have to worry about either fines or towing.
to poster 8, I feel your pain.
We need to organize a popular revolt against the unjust system of parking violations.
The guys concern regarding fire hydrants and cross walks is unwarranted. The law would have still allowed the city to tow cars that are illegally parked. It just wouldnt have allowed the city, as a judgment creditor, to seize the vehicle if it was exempt under the law. This makes perfect sense; exemptions exist in all aspects of law. There is a 50,000 homestead exemption for a home owned notwithstanding judgment creditors. Cars should be no different.
This would not have impacted the city’s right to tow illegally parked cars; only legally parked cars that have outstanding tickets
Yes, No, Yes, No, Maybe…………..
If New Yorkers were told that if they don’t obey the laws including double parking their cars WILL IMMEDIATELY be towed away AND this law is enforced then the idiots who double park (or triple park) will think twice about breaking the law.
New York is the only backward area of the entire country that allows double parking.
Was to good to be true
Towing for unpaid tickets is very fair. Probably one of the only valid reasons for towing that I see. Towing cars that are illegally parked unless at bus stop, double parked or at a fire hydrent is very unfair. I totally agree with bloomberg on this. I wish the whole towing procedures would change, but for unpaid parking tickets, I feel they have all the right to tow.
I drive all day and spend alot of time looking for parking even if I have to go in somewhere for a second. I got one parking ticket in the last 3 years.
So for all of you who get tons of tickets, I really dont feel bad for you.
THE REal question that has never been challenged in court is if its constitutionally legal bloomberg is more interesteed in raising funds to spend then balancing the budget and this is a line item on his capital spending plan how much nyc anticapates in earning on summones and towing sounds funny to me
He continued: “If nobody follows the parking restrictions because they know their car’s not going to get towed away, they’ll start parking in front of fire hydrants:
Well… That’s why you give a fine, and fine doubles over time if you don’t pay. Then ultimately you put a lien against that person, or collection agency. Why shouldn’t a fine be enough. You know why??!! Cuz they make even more money from towed cars… $250 or more for towing alone!