WSR 15-15-126
[Filed July 17, 2015, 6:32 a.m.]
Original Notice.
Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 15-12-048.
Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: Office hours for registered tow truck operators.
Hearing Location(s): General Administration Building, 210 11th Avenue S.W., Room G-3, Olympia, WA 98504, on August 26, 2015, at 8:30 a.m.
Date of Intended Adoption: August 27, 2015.
Submit Written Comments to: Shannon Bendiksen, Washington State Patrol, Motor Carrier Safety Division, P.O. Box 42614, Olympia, WA 98504, e-mail, fax (360) 596-3829, by August 21, 2015.
Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Melissa Van Gorkom by August 14, 2015, (360) 596-4017.
Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: With the passage of SB 5207 during the 2015 legislative session, the Washington state patrol is in need of updating its rules with regard to the office hours for registered tow truck operators.
Reasons Supporting Proposal: Provides clarifying language to the statute for implementation.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 46.55.115.
Statute Being Implemented: RCW 46.55.115.
Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.
Name of Proponent: Washington state patrol, governmental.
Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Shannon Bendiksen, P.O. Box 42614, Olympia, WA 98504, (360) 596-3805; Implementation and Enforcement: Washington State Patrol, P.O. Box 42600, Olympia, WA 98504, (360) 596-4000.
A small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW.
Small Business Economic Impact Statement
SUMMARY OF PROPOSED RULES: The Washington state patrol, commercial vehicle enforcement bureau, motor carrier safety division, is proposing amendments to WAC 204-91A-120 Business office hours and records.
The proposed amendments to this section are to implement changes due to the passage of SB 5207 during the 2015 legislative session. The rules will outline the required notification regarding an office closure and documentation with regard to any request for vehicle redemption that may occur during that time period.
SMALL BUSINESS ECONOMIC IMPACT STATEMENT (SBEIS)DETERMINATION OF NEED: Chapter 19.85 RCW, the Regulatory Fairness Act, requires that the economic impact of proposed regulations be analyzed in relation to small businesses. The statute defines small businesses as those business entities that employ fifty or fewer people and are independently owned and operated.
These proposed rules impact towing businesses. These businesses fall under code number 488410 of the North American Industry Classification System.
Preparation of an SBEIS is required when a proposed rule has the potential of placing a disproportionate economic impact on small businesses. The statute outlines information that must be included in an SBEIS.
Commercial vehicle enforcement bureau has analyzed the proposed rule amendments and has determined that small businesses will potentially be impacted by these changes, with some costs considered "more than minor" and disproportionate to small businesses.
INVOLVEMENT OF SMALL BUSINESSES: The patrol developed some basic estimates for the impact that the proposed rules may have on tow businesses. The impacts outlined below were developed based on estimates and will be shared with the tow businesses for their review and comment.
COST OF COMPLIANCE: Under chapter 19.85 RCW, commercial vehicle enforcement bureau has considered annual costs to small businesses for requiring employees to be available during their lunch hour.
Current statute required that the business be open between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Under current regulations, tow companies must ensure the proper staffing to maintain business hours throughout the entire day. The change to the RCW and subsequently the proposed rules allows for a small business to close for an hour lunch provided that they are available to release an impound within a half hour.
The proposed rules outline logging requirements for calls received during the lunch hour for the purpose of calculating storage fees based on the changes under RCW 46.55.060 in SB 5207. It is anticipated that businesses wishing to close during the lunch hour will need to get a sign that can be visible to the public. In addition, employees would need to be available during that time period at the designated number to return if there is a request to redeem a vehicle. Since companies are already required to be available 24/7 to redeem a vehicle, it is not anticipated that there will be a disproportionate cost to businesses with regard to employee availability during the lunch hour by phone, although companies will need to establish policies to adjust work schedules/hours based on the daily needs that may arise. 
Disproportionate Economic Impact Analysis: When proposed rule changes cause more than minor costs to small businesses, the Regulatory Fairness Act requires an analysis that compares these costs between small businesses and ten percent of the largest businesses.
The commercial vehicle enforcement bureau looked at the disproportionate economic impact of these businesses and determined that there may be a larger impact on smaller businesses who have less employees because they are more likely to completely close during the hour lunch due to having less employees and therefore may be more impacted by the requirements under the statute to be available during that time.
Mitigating Costs: The commercial vehicle enforcement bureau is working through the proposed rules with the industry to mitigate the impacts to the RCW changes by clarifying in the WAC adjustments that can be made if an employee gets called to release a vehicle during that time.
JOBS CREATED OR LOST: The commercial vehicle enforcement bureau does not anticipate that any jobs will be lost as a result of small businesses complying with these rules.
CONCLUSION: Commercial vehicle enforcement bureau has given careful consideration to the impact of proposed rules in WAC 204-91-120 on small businesses. To comply with the Regulatory Fairness Act, chapter 19.85 RCW, commercial vehicle enforcement bureau has analyzed impacts on small businesses and proposed ways to mitigate potential costs considered more than minor and disproportionate.
Please contact Lieutenant Shannon Bendiksen if you have any questions at (360) 596-4019.
A copy of the statement may be obtained by contacting Melissa Van Gorkom, Washington State Patrol, P.O. Box 42600, Olympia, WA 98504, phone (360) 596-4017, fax (360) 596-4015, e-mail
A cost-benefit analysis is required under RCW 34.05.328. A preliminary cost-benefit analysis may be obtained by contacting Melissa Van Gorkom, Washington State Patrol, P.O. Box 42600, Olympia, WA 98504, phone (360) 596-4017, fax (360) 596-4015, e-mail
July 13, 2015
John R. Batiste
AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 09-09-118, filed 4/21/09, effective 5/22/09)
WAC 204-91A-120 Business office hours and records.
(1) Business hours ((for purposes of inspection of records, place of business, and towing equipment must be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., excluding weekends and state recognized holidays)) will be in accordance with RCW 46.55.060(6). Businesses that close for an hour between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. must:
(a) Notify the public of the designated hour that they intend to use on a daily basis which must be posted on the door with a telephone number at which personnel can be reached as required by RCW 46.55.060.
(b) Log daily the time in which the office is closed for the lunch hour.
(c) Remain accessible to law enforcement or department of licensing if they are in the process of performing an inspection or investigation. Adjustments to the designated hour may be made if an investigation or inspection occurs during the designated hour provided that:
(i) The adjusted time is taken between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.;
(ii) Notice is provided at the door regarding the return time with a telephone number at which personnel can be reached as required per RCW 46.55.060; and
(iii) The total amount of time the business office is closed does not exceed one hour.
(2) The owner/operator must have personnel at the place of business during business hours to answer phone calls and to release vehicles and personal property. Persons from adjoining or neighboring businesses may not be used to meet this requirement. Phones may not be forwarded to an answering service during normal business hours.
(3) When an operator is not open for business and does not have personnel present at the place of business, the operator must post a clearly visible telephone number at the business location to advise the public how to make contact for the release of vehicles or personal property.
(4) The owner/operator must maintain personnel who ((can be contacted)) must be:
(a) Available twenty-four hours a day to release impounded vehicles within a sixty-minute period of time. ((The personnel must be)) If personnel are contacted during the hour the business has designated to be closed under subsection (1) of this section, personnel must:
(i) Log the time of the call;
(ii) Return to the business within no more than one-half hour;
(iii) Calculate the storage fees based on the time of the call.
(b) Identifiable as representing the company.
(5) All billing invoices must be numbered and must contain the following information:
(a) Date of service and tow truck operator's name.
(b) Time of departure in response to the call.
(c) Time service completed.
(d) Class of tow truck.
(e) If the towing call is for a Washington state patrol request, another police agency, a private impound, or the result of a private citizen request.
(f) All fees for service must be itemized.
(g) The date and time the vehicle was released.
(6) Yard cards containing the information in subsection (5) of this section may be used for internal control of vehicles by the operator until the vehicle is released, sold, or otherwise disposed of. Yard cards are supplemental to, and do not replace the invoice required above.
(7) A copy of the invoice must be filed by invoice number at the business location and a copy of any voided invoice must be retained in this same file. Another copy of the invoice must be included with the transaction file items identified in RCW 46.55.150.