Emergency Suspension of In-State Licensure Laws for Out-of-State Towing Operators

WHEREAS, the Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act, R.S. 29:721, et seq ., confers upon the governor of the state of Louisiana emergency powers to deal with emergencies and disasters, including those caused by fire, flood, earthquake or other natural or man-made causes, to ensure that preparations of this state will be adequate to deal with such emergencies or disasters, and to preserve the lives and property of the citizens of the state of Louisiana;

WHEREAS, pursuant to the Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act, R.S. 29:721, et seq ., a state of emergency was declared through Proclamation No. 48 KBB 2005, as amended by Proclamation No. 54 KBB 2005, and Proclamation No. 53 KBB 2005;

WHEREAS the safety and welfare of the inhabitants of the affected areas of the state of Louisiana require that the abandoned, flooded or otherwise damaged motor vehicles in the parishes affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita be removed immediately to in-state areas of retention to clear roads, passage-ways, parking lots, and property in an orderly and timely manner;

WHEREAS, an estimated three hundred fifty thousand (350,000) vehicles need to be removed immediately from the affected areas to clear these areas as part of the emergency relief efforts;

WHEREAS, the number of tow trucks currently available to meet immediate needs are insufficient and there is a need to supplement that number to serve those affected by these disasters;

WHEREAS, there is an imminent need to suspend the operation of certain regulatory statutes and rules for out-of-state operators who are qualified to do business and who currently have good standing in their respective states;

WHEREAS, a reasonable amount of time for owners to claim their vehicles shall be allowed given the circumstances, and since previously issued Executive Order No. KBB 2005-32, as amended by Executive Order No. 2005-48, suspended all legal deadlines, by nature of that Order, dislocated evacuees will have additional time to receive notice and claim their vehicles in excess of what is normally provided for by R.S. 32:1711 et seq .; and

WHEREAS, the Department of Public Safety and Corrections has requested suspension of applicable laws so that out-of-state tow truck owners and operators can come into the affected areas of the state of Louisiana and assist in the immediate need to remove vehicles from the areas needed for emergency relief efforts;

NOW THEREFORE I, KATHLEEN BABINEAUX BLANCO, Governor of the state of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:

SECTION 1: The specifications of the Towing and Storage Act, R.S. 32:1715(A), solely with regard to the requirement of the display of a towing license plate, and R.S. 32:1716(B), and only those rules promulgated pursuant specifically thereto, shall be suspended in the affected areas so that a temporary tow truck license plate issued by the Department of Public Safety may be accepted in lieu of a license tag, provided that the tow truck is properly registered and licensed in the state of origin.

SECTION 2: For the purpose of this Order, "affected areas" are defined as, and is limited to, the parishes of Jefferson (except the town of Grand Isle), Orleans, Plaquemines, and St. Bernard.

SECTION 3: The permitting of out-of-state tow trucks will be accomplished in accordance with the directive of the deputy secretary of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections pursuant to the authority granted at LAC 55:I:1901(B), as amended, to effect an alternate, but equivalent means of compliance.

SECTION 4: All statutory and regulatory requirements regarding the towing industry not specifically addressed by this Order or the directives of the deputy secretary of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections shall remain in operation and out-of-state towing vehicles must be equipped with all of the safety and towing equipment required under state statute and regulation.

SECTION 5: The Department of Public Safety and Corrections shall designate offices where temporary tow truck licenses will be sold in the following cities: Slidell, Monroe, Bossier, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Bogalusa, Hammond, and Ruston. Applicants are requested to call 1-877-368-5463 with questions regarding temporary tow truck licenses. For further information regarding temporary towing permits, interested persons should visit

SECTION 6: All departments, commissions, boards, offices, entities, agencies, and officers of the state of Louisiana, or any political subdivision thereof, are authorized and directed to cooperate with the implementation of the provisions of this Order.

SECTION 7: This Order is effective upon signature and shall continue in effect until December 31, 2005, unless amended, modified, terminated, or rescinded by the governor, or terminated by operation of law prior to such time.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana, at the Capitol, in the city of Baton Rouge, on this 13th day of October, 2005.

Kathleen Babineaux Blanco

Al Ater
Secretary of State