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Winnipeg towing company charges city $1.1M for tows that never happened, report claims

Winnipeg towing company charges city .1M for tows that never happened, report claims

The Metropolis of Winnipeg says a towing firm charged it for greater than one million {dollars} value of tows that by no means occurred.

Now, metropolis officers have proposed a settlement with the corporate that will see it repay lower than half of what the town says is owed.

In December 2021, the town launched a evaluation of all invoices from Tartan Towing, the corporate it had contracted to do what are known as “courtesy tows” of automobiles throughout residential snow clearing parking bans, beginning in 2016.

The evaluation discovered that a number of invoices, value a complete of $1.1 million, had been invalid, in accordance with a report that can be reviewed by the town’s govt coverage committee subsequent week.

To keep away from taking the corporate to courtroom, the report says the town has negotiated a settlement with Tartan to pay again $446,000 over the following two years.

“I’m annoyed as a result of why aren’t we asking for … the total quantity?” stated Coun. Janice Lukes (Waverley West), chair of the general public works committee.

“The town has the contract with the towing firm.… [How] the towing firm delivers the service just isn’t our downside. They’re answerable for delivering the service. I’m wondering why the towing firm wasn’t additionally checking with their contractors.”

Lukes additionally questioned why the town wasn’t checking its invoices earlier than December 2021. 

“It’s actually failures on each side,” she stated. 

Lukes plans to ask metropolis officers why police will not be investigating, she stated.

CBC Information requested Tartan Towing for an interview, however an worker stated nobody was out there. 

Firm must be suspended: Lukes

The report says for the reason that overcharges had been found, Tartan has fired a number of the tow truck drivers concerned and given warnings to others, whereas others have left the corporate.

The town has additionally modified its monitoring strategies. Tow truck drivers should now embrace photographs earlier than and after a automobile is towed.

“Tartan has issued a powerful warning, to all present and future operators, of penalties on account of any misuse or false reporting utilizing the app sooner or later,” the report states.

The proposed settlement requires council approval, but when council doesn’t approve it, the town may sue Tartan. 

“If this matter proceeds to trial, the town must make investments monetary and/or human sources to provoke a litigation continuing and would wish to each show its losses and that Tartan triggered the losses,” report creator Kalyn Bomback wrote.

In an emailed assertion, metropolis spokesperson Adam Campbell wrote that “Tartan supplies the town with ongoing towing companies and the general public service needs to take care of a working relationship.”

Lukes doesn’t agree.

“I truthfully suppose this contractor shouldn’t be allowed to proceed. They need to be suspended for a time period,” she stated.

In a briefing on Jan. 20, govt coverage committee members requested numerous different adjustments to the settlement with Tartan. 

They need the corporate to determine the sub-contractors concerned to make sure they aren’t employed sooner or later. Additionally they need the general public service to find out what steps Tartan is taking to ensure sub-contractors do not make false claims, in addition to steps the town can take to ensure this doesn’t occur once more.

Tartan Towing costs metropolis for tows that by no means occurred

Metropolis officers negotiated a settlement with a Winnipeg towing firm after it charged the town for tows that by no means occurred. A brand new report says Tartan Towing over charged the town by greater than $1M over six years. Now, the town is asking council to approve a settlement with the corporate to pay again lower than half of that. Public works chair Janice Lukes says the town ought to go after the total quantity.