Local companies that lost the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department towing contract have filed a lawsuit against the owner of Gene’s Towing, which won the contract.
The lawsuit, filed last Friday in Pierce County Superior Court, contends that Gene’s owner Michael Myers urged other companies to boycott the contract, then submitted the only bid.
In an interview in March, Myers denied the allegations. And the sheriff’s department accused the other companies of trying to hold taxpayers hostage with their boycott.
Read the press released announcing the lawsuit below:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 27, 2008
The Towing Companies of Pierce County, LLC have filed a lawsuit in Pierce County against Michael Myers and Gene’s Towing, Inc. alleging that Myers, doing business as Gene’s Towing, Inc., represented the towing companies as their spokesperson with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office regarding contracts with individual towing companies, during the period of May, 2005 to June 2007.
The Complaint alleges that Myers used his position as spokesperson to advise the towing companies to refuse to sign current annual contracts with Pierce County for 2007. It further alleges that all the individual towing companies in Pierce County except one followed his advice and that thereafter on June 6, 2007 the County issued a Request for Proposal (RFP #857) which requested bids for a single dispatch towing contractor for the first time.
The lawsuit alleges that Myers secretly dealt with Pierce County representatives concerning the single dispatch system and assured the towing companies that it was not involved in negotiations regarding towing companies main concern as to fees for trash removal from abandoned vehicles. All towing companies refused to bid on the single dispatch RFP except defendant Myers d/b/a Gene’s Towing, Inc.
Plaintiff towing companies claim that the sole dispatch contract with Myers permits him to “parcel out” towing calls to whom he chooses and gives him control over abandoned vehicles.
As a result of this single bid by Myers the County signed a contract with Myers/Gene’s Towing, Inc. On May 29, 2008 plaintiff members were all informed by Pierce County Sheriff’s Office that they would no longer be receiving towing calls as in past years. Plaintiff alleges tortuous interference with business and unfair and deceptive business practices by Myers causing damages and irreparable harm to plaintiff members.
The towing companies have requested damages for loss of business and for an order requiring Myers and his corporation Gene’s Towing, Inc. to deposit receipts from towing services from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office in the Registry of the Court until further order or until Myers ceases operations on his County contract.
Contact: Allan L. Overland, Attorney at Law
901 South I. St., Suite 202
Tacoma, WA 98405
PH: (253) 383-3053
FAX: (253) 383-3209