According to Thad McCollough, owner of McCollough Auto Repair, he says yes...he has been stealing from the public. Sounds a bit bizarre for a businessman to say, but McCollough says he can no longer sit back and watch local wrecker services take advantage of motorists. For years now, the City of Dothan has used over a dozen wrecker services to tow your car, most charging between $125.00 and $185.00. Fees McCollough says are just down right ridiculous. McCollough said he charged $125.00, and he thinks that is three times too high. He said he doesn`t use his wreckers unless he is on rotation, because there is so much money there...people will pull in Dothan for $31.00 anywhere in the city, and he can`t do that. McCollough says the solution to the problem is that the city should only allow solely owned wrecker companies to get the business, not body shops like his own. McCollough was asked by our reporter, "What statement are you making?" McCollough replied, "We`re not just getting rotation money, we`re getting money for storage and covering them up, etc...it`s not just the $135.00 tow bill, we get big money." Police Chief John White whose department runs the rotation service, says there`s absolutely nothing wrong with the current system. He says McCollough is only complaining because other companies may be making more money than him. He said general complaints are about who may be getting more than I`m getting, and that drives a complaint. He said they make sure those people comply with the list, their facilities are inspected, their equipment is physically inspected, and from time to time, those that fall out of compliance are given time to get back in compliance. Mayor Chester Sowell and commissioners say, there are several companies not complying with the rules..like those using the same physical address, but different company names, clearly a violation of the law. But, White says those who can afford more than one business, should not be forced out. The rules require that they have a separate physical address...just because one man owns more than one company, he should not be punished. McCollough`s gripe with the city started when his company was recently left out of the rotation, and another towing company got the call instead. McCollough says the city is being bias, and the entire system needs to be changed.
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