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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Office Hours

Can the owner of Evergreen Towing try to start a second tow company?

This post is sort of a mailbag response. Last week we wrote about the role the Washington State Department of Licensing played in slapping a Spokane tow truck firm for alleged misdeeds during this year's Hoopfest. A story summarized the key issues.

The company, Evergreen State Towing was accused by the state of towing vehicles with willful disregard for due process, causing drivers thousands of dollars in recovery and legal costs. In its ruling, the state DOL slapped Evergreen with a five-year suspension (which Evergreen can still appeal).

Question came in: what would stop the owner of Evergreen to shut down one truck towing firm and start another?

We asked Lewis Dennie, the Spokane manager forthe DOL's dealer and manufacturing services. He said the state agency closely monitors new applications to insure this doesn't happen. A cross-checking method is used to check names of business applicants and see if the person has any penalties in place, Dennie said.

The same method of cross-checking looks at the address provided by an applicant, he said.

Asked if the state has acted against false applicants, Dennie said: "We have taken formal administrative actions to deny an applicant an application due to the conditions (of having a prior violation). It is important to keep in mind the applicant will often withdraw an application once we begin the review process and make the applicant aware of the pending action by DOL."


Tom Sowa
Tom Sowa covers technology, retail and economic development and writes the Office Hours blog.