Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Predatory Bexar Towing of San Antonio Loses SOAH Appeal, Now Comes $87,000 Fine

What a deal: John Deloach aka Bexar Towing of San Antonio who has terrorized the citizens, members of the military and hundreds of tourists for years, has lost his appeal before the State Office of Administrative Hearings. This means the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation will attempt to convince it's Perry appointed commissioners to force Deloach to pay a fine of $87K plus reimburse everyone who was overcharge the tow fee regulated by city ordinance at the time, to the tune of $10K+ bringing the total to $98,000.00.

After the TDLR Commissioners decide on the fine to be issued based on SOAH, Bexar will have one last appeal, which everyone within the San Antonio Police Department expect them to exercise that right.

This should send a strong message that ripping off motorists to other tow companies that you will be held responsible for your actions!

State Office of Administrative Hearings
Cathleen Parsley
Chief Administrative Law Judge
February 19, 2014

William H. Kuntz VIA FACSIMILE NO. 1512) 475-2874
Executive Director
Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
920 Colorado, 4'“ Floor
Austin, TX 78701

RE: Docket N0. 452e13e3415.TOW; Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation v. John Deloach Enterprises, Inc., dba Bexar Towing f/k/a Roadside Recovery Specialist, Inc.; (TDLR No. TOW20120019127)

Dear Mr. Kuntz:

A proposal for decision (PFD) was issued in the above-referenced case on October 28, 2013. When it was discovered that the PFD was sent only to Respondent and not to Respondents counsel, it was sent to counsel on December 20, 2013. Exceptions were due in this case on January 15, 2014.

Respondent timely filed an exception to the PFD, and Staff responded to it. Because Administrative Law Judge Steven Arnold, who presided over this case and issued the PFD, has been out of the office on medical leave, I have reviewed the PFD, the exception and Staff's response.

Respondent’s exception concerns an issue that was raised at the hearing and addressed byJudge Arnold in the PFD: that the City of San Antonio had adopted and enforced ordinances that are not in compliance with the Texas Towing and Booting Act, Tex. Occ, Code § 2308.208

As noted by Judge Arnold, neither the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation nor the State Office of Administrative Hearings has authority to review the lawfulness of a city ordinance. Moreover, the lawfulness of that ordinance is not an issue in this case.

Judge Arnold found that Respondent charged a tow fee that exceeded the amount set forth in the City of San Antonio’s ordinance.

Regardless of whether the City of San Antonio’s fee was lawful, it is clear from the evidence that Respondent violated the Department’s prohibition against charging more than allowed by the relevant city ordinance, thereby violating § 2308.2065(a)(2) of the Act.

Staff correctly observes that Respondent‘ challenge to the San Antonio ordinance must be brought before the judicial branch.

On behalf of Judge Arnold, I do not believe it is appropriate to modify or amend the PFD or to re-open the hearing for further evidence. Accordingly, the PFD is ready for action by the Commission.