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Councilman Hall Pushing for 'Booting' Ordinance

After complaints by Atlanta residents and visitors, the ordinance could end up banning "booting" altogether in Atlanta.

Atlanta officials are in the process of creating an ordinance to strengthen the city's regulation of vehicle booting companies, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports.

The ordinance is being pushed by Councilman Kwanza Hall and would require parking lot operators to provide payment receipts, as well their contact information.

Hall represents District 2, which includes portions of Midtown and the Old Fourth Ward.

The legislation, which is still being drafted, could change in the next few weeks as the city's attorneys continue to work on the the issue. Hall said one idea is banning booting entirely, as was done in unincorporated Gwinnett County in 2007 and Cobb County in 2004.

This news comes as a result of many Atlanta residents and visitors complaining of abuses by vehicle booting companies, which patrol private parking lots and clamp the metal "boots" onto vehicles for nonpayment of parking fees.

The standard fee to have a technician remove a boot is $75. 

In early July, an in the city after his car was damaged from a boot in Buckhead. In the report from CBS Atlanta, Sai Reddy said he had not only paid to park and should never have gotten booted in the first place, a technician damaged his vehicle when trying to remove the boot.

Car booting in East Atlanta sparked a controversy last year when the owner of a private lot in the Village rented it out to a woman who began booting vehicles without any real warning that the lot was closed to "unauthorized" cars.

Other articles of interest:

Would you like to see vehicle booting banned in Atlanta? Let us know in the comments below!

ronald August 02, 2012 at 02:09 PM
We're all for booting -- only practical way for us to keep people from parking in our private lot; dumping trash overnight and on weekends. Posted No Parking/Private Property signs are ignored and fencing/gates are expensive. Unless M. Hall has a better solution?
Spec Ops August 03, 2012 at 09:08 AM
Yeah, boots are going to keep people from dumping trash overnight and on weekends. Right, because someone dumping trash is going to sit there while you attach a boot....
kelli rose August 03, 2012 at 10:24 AM
It's all for the almighty dollar ... just another way to make y pay for not paying in the first place!
Midtown Lifer August 03, 2012 at 12:42 PM
Booting is the only practical way to inhibit people from parking illegally, This is a real problem for property owners who are responsible for ensuring parking is available for patrons of their retail tenants. Booting is a deterrent in a way that towing is not and if you park illegally isn't it a whole lot easier to get a boot taken off than deal with retrieving your impounded vehicle? That's the alternative, folks. How would you feel if you ran a retail business and people parked in your parking spaces and walked across the street? I bet you wouldn't be very happy about it. And for those who think booting is all about the money - it's not. The property owner gets nothing and the booting company does an awful lot of work for a lousy $75 fee - they are responsible for enforcement! A flat fee is necessary so there is no question about what you'll have to pay if you park illegally but booting is an important tool to help protect the interests of local retail businesses. Don't we want to give our retailers every chance to succeed?? If someone is booted who didn't park illegally all they have to do is prove it and I bet most responsible property owners would reimburse the booting fee. . .
ronald August 03, 2012 at 01:02 PM
Right, Spec Ops. No cars means no trash. Do the math.
ronald August 03, 2012 at 01:03 PM
Well stated.
Sam August 04, 2012 at 12:55 AM
What Councilman Hall is calling for is more responsibility & accountability from the vehicle booting companies. The types of complaints we're talking about are examples of irresponsible, abusive or just downright stupid practices. No one's saying let's allow a free-for-all on parking in Atlanta. I've personally been booted and was parked in a legal space I'd fully paid for and correctly followed the lot's procedures in doing so. The booting company claimed they couldn't read the space number on the ticket clearly enough on my dash board so for all they knew I'd stolen someone's else's used print-out (the machine prints the tickets, not me!). Clearly someone was just looking to make another $75. And they will stand there, holding your car hostage (even as you hold your paid ticket & credit card receipt in hand) refusing to remove the boot until you turn over $75. It's then the parking lot owner's info they give you to call to complain & seek a refund from. And no, unfortunately you can't rely on most property owners to be responsible and reimburse you after providing proof you didn't illegally park. Most will never respond to even repeated calls afterwards because the fee has already been paid, it's not their money, and they know you can't do anything about it! :) So while I agree we need to prevent illegal & unpaid parking, I'm all for stopping garbage like this!
ronald August 04, 2012 at 02:46 AM
Great points, Sam. Like you, I've been booted -- couple of years back on W Peachtree next to the post office... and I was furious! Cost me $50 back then to mail a letter. The 'booter' was hiding at the rear of the lot and I wasn't paying attention to the signs posted. I felt like I was unjustly preyed on. So... I get it. Now -- as a business owner in Midtown who packs gloves in his desk and every morning walks around the office property to pick up used condoms, empty beer bottles, an occasional crack pipe and trash from the bar next door.... I can tell you this. Since the booting company has patrolled our parking lot (signs everywhere saying private parking -- you will be booted and towed), our lot at night and on weekends is clear and clean. No prostitutes. No crack parties. No crime. Until K. Hall or anyone else has a better solution, we will stay the course.

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