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Apr 29, 2009 3:18 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Westhampton Beach wants access to larger pool of tow truck operators

Apr 29, 2009 3:18 PM

Westhampton Beach is considering changing its ordinance regarding tow truck companies so that it can increase the number that are available to the municipality at any one time, according to Village Police Chief Ray Dean.

Currently, the village has just four tow truck operators who are available to complete police department work, such as cleaning up after car accidents, impounding vehicles and moving disabled vehicles off village roads, Chief Dean explained. Right now, those operators are located either within the village or no more than two miles outside of it, he said.

The proposed ordinance change seeks to increase that radius to five miles, Chief Dean said, allowing the police department access to more towing companies.

The proposed change will be discussed at a public hearing scheduled for the next Village Board meeting on Thursday, May 7, at 7 p.m.

Those tow truck operators who want to be added to the list must apply to the village and pay a $100 fee, according to Village Clerk Kathy McGinnis.

At the present time, only Otis Ford in Quogue, Shoreline Towing in East Quogue, and Westhampton Coachworks and Ultimate Car Care, both in Westhampton Beach, are on the village’s approved call list, said Westhampton Beach Mayor Conrad Teller.

“This is a hot potato,” the mayor said during last week’s work session. “We’ll be stirring up all the tow trucks from here to Patchogue.”

If it changes the ordinance, the village could expect to attract tow truck operators from as far east as East Quogue, as far north as Flanders, and as far west as Eastport.

Chief Dean said Tuesday that the police department needs to call for a tow truck at least once a month, and more often during the summer months.

At last week’s work session, Deputy Mayor Jim Kametler said he opposed the change, noting that those towing companies paying village taxes should have first crack at any village work. “I don’t understand why we’re expanding our horizons,” he said.

Chief Dean explained that having more tow truck operators at their disposal will assist police officers during emergencies. He said that having more towers available at the same time would enable police to quickly clean up multiple-car accidents and get traffic moving faster.

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The ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM at all of the Westhampton Beach Trustee Meetings is NOT music on Main Street or the pool of tow trucks…it’s the excess of the Police Department and the Mayors illegal actions to support and help build the feathered nest of the controversial Chief, Ray Dean. The Village of WHB is 2.9 square miles… has 15 Police Officers, proportionately enough to cover 15 square miles … more cars, boats, scooters, SUV’s and pick-up trucks than any department 10 times the land and sea area. ...more
By Resident (42), Westhampton Beach on Apr 29, 09 9:08 AM
This is not only utter and complete wrong-headed bather, but it's copied and pasted from another response to a semi-related Comment by the same person... who, I don't for an instant believe is a resident of Westhampton Beach!

I shall now post the same response in that other story!
By Frank Wheeler (1823), Northampton on Apr 29, 09 4:53 PM
Ray Dean and his department deserve every dime they get. Anything the police dept needs-give it to them.
By Lefty46 (56), Westhampton on Apr 29, 09 5:26 PM
One tow truck called per month - more in the summer. Not exactly a pressing need. I would hate to see these guys lurking around corners in the summer waiting to tow vehicles at a police officer's direction. It would ruin the vibe.
By William Rodney (555), southampton on May 1, 09 10:04 AM
Resident. According to you there are many illegal issues going on. So why not contact the correct agency and have this looked at.
The reason you will not do that is because there are no illegal issues. You are posting nonesense and lies. 200K a year, I bet Chief Dean wishes he was making that much.
Oh, how does having fifteen Police officers mean they can cover 15 square miles?
Again, nonesense.
Its ok though, we have all come to understand that when the lies start flowing it ...more
By The Truth (15), Westhampton on May 1, 09 5:33 PM
I am Ultimate Car Car, I have been on the Tow List for the past 3 years and have only recieved 2 calls from Westhampton Beach Police, and have answered numerous calls for Westhampton Coachworks. It seems there's not enough work for (1) tow company, and now you want to add out of Town Tow Trucks, Do those business pay taxes in Southampton Town----How do we survive with the great minds at the helm.
By ultimate (1), westhampton on May 6, 09 3:57 PM
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