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Panel backs big tow rate hikes

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Car towing rates will go up nearly 14 percent and daily storage charges will rise 37 percent over the next three years under a contract recommended for approval at the Evanston Transportation and Parking Committee meeting Wednesday evening.

North Shore "is asking for a modest increase" after holding its rates steady for the past five years, Revenue/Parking Division Manager Rickey Voss told the committee.

Residents and visitors will face the new fees when their cars are towed for parking violations

Voss noted that under the proposed contract the city itself will see no increases in charges for handling its own vehicles — rates that already are dramatically lower than the ones the company charges the public.

Most city vehicles will continue to be towed for no charge, while residents by year three of the new contract will be paying $165 to have a car towed. The city will continue to pay $10 a day for vehicle storage while residents will be hit with a $55 daily charge.

North Shore has provided towing services to the city for the past 34 years. Voss says it's the only company that has the capacity to meet city requirements for in-town storage capacity and round-the-clock service availability.

The sole-source contract now goes to the City Council for review.

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