Colorado Legislative Council Staff


(replaces fiscal impact dated November 24, 1998)

Drafting Number:

Prime Sponsor(s):

LLS 99-0045

Rep. Swenson

Sen. Arnold


Bill Status:

Fiscal Analyst:

January 22, 1999

House 2nd Reading

Scott Nachtrieb (303-866-4752)



Summary of Legislation

            The bill, as amended by the House Transportation and Energy Committee, January 21, 1999, would allow the Public Utilities Commission to suspend or revoke a towing carrier's license for violating the statutory provisions concerning the towing of abandoned vehicles (Title 42 Article 4 Part 18 Colorado Revised Statutes). Out-of-state owners and lienholders of abandoned vehicles that are towed from private property would be added to the notification list on the Department of Transportation's vehicle search report. A towing carrier would be required to make a reasonable effort to ascertain the address of an owner of an abandoned vehicle and whether there are lienholders on the vehicle. The amendment would allow additional information to be recorded regarding the state wherein an abandon vehicle is registered.

            A licensed motor vehicle auction dealer or a classified newspaper advertisement would be required for the sale of certain abandoned motor vehicles towed from private property. Such vehicles could not be sold to persons with an interest in the operator having possession of the vehicle. A towing carrier could not sell an abandoned motor vehicle towed from private property if the owner notifies the carrier within thirty calendar days of the publication of the notice to sell, unless the owner provided written permission for the operator to proceed with the sale. The amendment clarified when a towing carrier may proceed with a sale after an owner has notified the carrier.

            The class 1 misdemeanor was removed from the bill by the amendment. A tow carrier would have to register with the Department of Revenue to perfect a lien upon a towed motor vehicle. The Department of Revenue could cancel the registration of an operator who violates the provisions governing the towing and storage of motor vehicles. The amendment changed the effective date to July 1, 2000.

            The Department of Regulatory Agencies would not require additional expenditures to implement the provisions of this bill. The bill adds an additional remedy (license suspension or revocation) that the PUC may use when dealing with tow carriers who violate the law.


            The Department of Revenue would have some additional costs in registering tow carriers which would be the result of generating forms used to register tow carriers. The amendment changes the effective date so that the department would be able to modify and order the forms through the current form reorder process and not have a fiscal impact. Therefore, this bill as amended, is assessed as having no fiscal impact.

Departments Contacted

            Revenue          Regulatory Agencies