A measure patroned by a local legislator in the 2022 General Assembly session would make it open season on squatting in many private parking lots – at least for the first hour.
The bill – HB 867 – from Del. Alfonso Lopez (D-Arlington-Fairfax) would prohibit property owners from towing vehicles from their property until at least an hour has elapsed, if the property owner does not charge for parking on the lot.
There are a number of exemptions to the rule, but to add insult to injury (as some property owners might see it), the measure would allow someone towed within the first hour to recover damages of up to twice the towing and storage fees incurred, although the bill is nebulous on how that would occur.
The measure, whose chance of passing the Republican-controlled House of Delegates would seem to be close to zero, requires local governments that have a towing ordinance to incorporate the measure into their language.