We haven’t been following that story about the "predatory towing" in Grand Forks very carfully. Too bad for us because WDAZ reported on it last night. The City Beat was somehow stuck with the story this morning and discovered that the competition was about a week behind. The judge’s ruling was last Wednesday.
I also discovered that one of the towing companies plead guilty six months ago and paid a moderate fine at the time. That would be Randy’s Key Lock and Towing, which did all the towing. Stuart’s Towing and Repair, even though it impounded the cars and overcharged for their recovery, is located in East Grand Forks. Judge Joel Medd says that makes the company outside the city’s jurisdiction.
Here’s the only real nugget of news: City Council member Mike McNamara said he’d like to see the law changed to forbid towing companies from impounding cars outside of city limits. This could require licensing towing companies.
Stuart Minske, the eponymous owner, is known for charging East Grand Forks residents high rates for his services. He also gives East Side cops free services while on duty, which leads to the police chief defending him at council. Personally, I can’t say I’m sorry the city wants to regulate the industry more to protect Grand Forks drivers from guys like that. What kind of rip off artist charges people $260 for towing and impound?