Buffalo lawmakers probing illegal booting of vehicles

Jun 12, 2019

Buffalo's Common Council is starting a probe of a local company contracted to "boot" cars parked illegally in private parking lots.

It is not clear if this is the only company involved. Council President Darius Pridgen said details are very vague because the specific company named in paperwork does not issue receipts, so it is not completely clear how many people are overcharged for what is supposed to be a $75 fee for taking the boot off the parked car so it can be driven away.

"We are not only investigating one of the companies that this Council has been informed could possibly not have had the proper licensing when recently booting and charging above what the law asks. So it is our responsibility and our duty to investigate those type of things," Pridgen said.

Pridgen said this towing company has been invited to appear before the Community Development Committee July 2.

The council president said a Harvard Law School student working as a summer intern in the city Law Department will be handling much of the probe and that the Law Department has been asked to prepare a new law for booting to ensure fees are charged as allowed by law and to make sure the company shows up promptly to unboot the car or the fee will be cut.