The Bloomington city council approved Ordinance 20-10, a new towing ordinance, at its meeting Wednesday night.
The new legislation raises the towing fee from $125 to $135.
It also allows people getting towed a chance to regain their vehicle on-the-spot without being charged as long as the tow truck hasn’t lifted two tires off the ground.
The ordinance builds on the "nonconsensual towing business" ordinance that was approved in February.
The ordinance also sets the storage fee for all towed vehicles at $25 per day if the vehicle sits in storage longer than 24 hours.
The new rules will go into effect on July 1, 2020.
City Passes Resolution On TDM
City council also approved Resolution 20-08 for a Transportation Demand Management Plan (TDM) during Wednesday night’s meeting.
The goal of the plan is to lower the amount of single-occupied vehicle (SOV) trips from 62.8 percent to 60 percent by 2022.
City Planning Services Manager Beth Rosenbarger says the plan will have a positive long-term impact on Bloomington’s environment.
“A significant reduction in Greenhouse gases emissions as well as reductions in traffic and other forms of air pollution," Rosenbarger says.
Rosenbarger says in order to reach that goal the plan would increase the city’s availability for ridesharing, add more bus services and increase street parking fees.
"It's very well studied and documented that transportation plans like this work to reduce emissions," council member Matt Flaherty says.
Rosenbarger points to Portland, Maine and Fort Collins, Colorado as two cities that have successfully adopted similar plans.
Bloomington's plan calls for a $500,000 annual budget that includes two full-time employees and one part-time employee.
The city says the resolution only stands as an advisory document. This means the city does not have to act or commit funds at this time.
The council would have to pass the plan as an appropriation ordinance before giving funds, which council says it will not do in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Council member Isabel Piedmont-Smith is the sponsor of this bill. She says the council will reevaluate funding when the city knows more about what money will be available as the pandemic continues.