Town & Country Village suspends car booting program

June 7, 2013 8:24:44 PM PDT
There is a new weapon in the parking wars between a pair of west-side retail centers. Rather than towing cars, drivers are finding immobilizing boots placed on their vehicles, but the booting plan has been put on hold.

Parking valets Nana Adjapong and Ziyad Daboul have seen dozens of drivers whose cars have been towed away from Town & Country Village.

"There is a lot of people actually getting towed around here," Dabout said.

"It happens every day," Adjapong said.

The reason, Town & Country Village is not the same as CityCentre, which is located across the street. Drivers who make the mistake of parking there and walking over face a $200 tow.

But recently, Town & Country Village started placing boots on offending cars. The shopping centers say the $70 removal fee was a cheaper option.

But the plan has been suspended.

This week, a driver who got booted after leaving a car at Town & Country Village told us a plain-clothed parking attendant asked for cash to remove the boot. Those drivers complained that the practice seemed less than above board.

Texas law states, "A booting company shall accept payment by an electronic check, debit card or credit card for any fee or charge associated with the removal of a boot."

And further, the law states, "Operators must wear a uniform, clearly marked with the booting company name as it appears on booting company license."

When we asked officials with Town & Country Village about the issue, the company said it confirmed what drivers told us and terminated the booting program.

Town & Country Village officials say they will hire a company that is properly trained and adheres to the regulatory requirements of operating a booting program.

One more note: If you pay to park on this side of Queensloch, it is perfectly fine to cross the street; but if you park in a free spot in front of a store and walk over to CityCentre, you will be towed or booted.

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