Councilmember Jim Sims is sponsor of the non-consensual towing ordinance.
The proposed new ordinance on non-consensual towing would require signs similar to these, which are already in place.
Bloomington Police Department operations captain Scott Oldham tells the council that “no-pay” releases of towed vehicles are no longer ordered by BPD.
At its regular meeting last Wednesday, Bloomington’s city council voted to refer a new non-consensual towing ordinance to the council’s committee of the whole for a second time.
Wednesday’s referral to the committee of the whole means the new law regulating towing companies that remove vehicles parked illegally on private property will get further consideration on Feb. 12. But it won’t get a vote to enact it on that day.
The procedural vote, to refer the legislation to the committee of the whole, was split 7–2. That’s because councilmembers are not yet in alignment about how they want to use smaller, four-member committees, compared to the committee of the whole, in their legislative process.
It’s been a point of friction since the start of the year.
“Is council a co-equal branch of government or isn’t it?” That’s a rhetorical question posed by Steve Volan, this year’s president of Bloomington’s city council, about the relationship between the council and the city’s administration.
Volan asked the question during a contentious work session held last Friday afternoon in city hall’s Hooker Conference Room. All nine councilmembers attended at least part of the session, along with a dozen and half staff members, among them several department heads and deputy mayor Mick Renneisen.
Six of the nine councilmembers, led by outgoing council president Dave Rollo, wanted to postpone a vote on Volan’s proposal for three weeks, until Jan. 29. Susan Sandberg was vocal in her opposition to establishing standing committees, pointing out that she’d heard similar proposals three times before from Volan, during her time serving on the council.
Three councilmembers, including Volan, would have been content to postpone the question until next week, Jan. 15. But they thought the three-week wait was unnecessary. The 6–3 vote to postpone until Jan. 29 came after about 90 minutes of debate.
At a work session held on Friday, Bloomington city councilmember Steve Volan introduced a proposal he’s put on the agenda for the council’s first meeting of the year, on Wednesday, Jan. 8.
Volan’s resolution would use existing city code to establish several four-member standing committees, adding to the already-existing land use committee. The land use committee is the subset of councilmembers to which planned unit developments (PUDs) have been referred for the last couple years, after getting a first reading in front of the council.