New State Senate bill would ban booting of vehicles in Georgia

Proposal to ban booting in Georgia
Published: Feb. 23, 2023 at 5:59 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 24, 2023 at 10:23 AM EST
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - A Georgia state senator wants to ban the practice of booting cars. Sen. Josh McLaurin and other lawmakers introduced the legislation on Thursday. The bill has bipartisan support both in and out of the state house.

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It was supposed to be a quick trip into the city for the Ashur family - but their plans were quickly curbed. The Ashurs’ car was booted.

A parking enforcement company placed a bright orange and yellow metal device onto two of their vehicle’s tires. The Ashur’s son Ryan spoke on their behalf saying his parents thought they paid to park through the app, but for some reason, it didn’t work.

“We talk to the guy and he said yeah you’re good to go. So we went in and came back and we the boot was just on our car,” said Ryan Ashur of Marietta.

Currently in Georgia, a private parking enforcement company can boot your vehicle if the municipality your car is parked in has an ordinance on the books that allows it.

“It’s kind of a shoot first and ask questions later business model,” said Sen. Josh McLaurin, a Democrat representing North Fulton.

In Atlanta, while there are restrictions, booting is perfectly legal. State Senator Josh McLaurin is proposing statewide legislation that would fine companies $1,000 dollars for putting those devices on your car, even if it’s parked illegally.

“If the whole point of this is that the car is not supposed to be parked somewhere because it’s taking space, how is the solution to trap the car there,” said Sen. Mclaurin.

It took a little more than 15 minutes and some headaches, but the Ashurs were finally able to get their boot removed.

“Call the number, and we had to like go through a bunch of links and stuff to find the website. From the website we had to go through these complicated payments then we had to wait for it to finish and then we got the boot off finally,” said Ashur.

While they had to pay a fine up front, the Ashurs say they plan to contest the ticket in hopes of receiving a refund.

The proposed legislation is not a done deal yet. It has yet to be assigned to a committee, but Sen. McLaurin says it has bipartisan support.