As you can see from this article, our competitor's will even try to use the government and taxpayer's money to try and prevent us from working.  Why don't they just try offering a better and more environmentally safe service?  Geez!

Mobile Carwash Ordered to Stop Dumping Water
Thousand Oaks: Code enforcement officials react to a competitor's complaint.  The city wants to regulate all traveling businesses.
m14.jpg (18598 bytes)by PSYCHE PASCUAL
TIMES STAFF WRITER

Until recently, businessman Lance Winslow thought little about the dirty water that trickled off vehicles cleaned by his mobile carwash business.

But Thousand Oaks Code enforcement officers, acting on a complaint from a competing carwash, told Winslow, his partner, Paul Lascola, and their fleet of car-cleaners to idle their soap buckets, saying businesses can't dump dirty water anywhere they please.

Code enforcement officials say water dumped into storm drains violates regional waste-water discharge regulations and have vowed to regulate mobile services such as The Car Wash Guys.

"If I were using 50 gallons and leaving large puddles, I could understand," Winslow said.  He argued that the high-pressure sprayers used by his business barely get the ground wet.  Compared with fixed-locations carwashes that use 10 or more gallons of water per car, their trucks spray less than 2.4 gallons of water per vehicle, he said.

Donald C. LaVoie, the city's code enforcement supervisor, declined to discuss the complaint before he compiles a staff report.  The City Council is expected to review the report before the end of the month, he said.

But in a Dec. 27 letter addressed to Winslow, LaVoie wrote that The Car Wash Guys violated city zoning codes by washing cars in places such as office parking lots and gas stations.

The firm has a fleet of 10 trucks whose operators make appointments with customers and travel to different locations to wash cars.

To dump water into the Thousand Oaks sewer system, Winslow needs a permit from the Regional Water Quality Control Board, LaVoie said.  He ordered the business to stop operations immediately.

But after a plea from Lascola, Winslow's partner, the City Council last week gave The Car Wash Guys a reprieve while the city attorney's office reviews zoning codes for possible revisions.

Twenty years ago when many zoning ordinances were drafted, city planners did not envision businesses - providing such services as catering, auto mechanics and washing cars - traveling from place to place by appointment, City Atty. Mark G. Sellers said.

A competing carwash that does not offer mobile service complained that Winslow and Lascola's business was dumping water into the sewer system without a permit, Sellers said.  He said it was the first compliant on record against The Car Wash Guys in the three years since the firm began doing business in Thousand Oaks

Winslow, 26, and Lascola, 48 are using the drought o justify their service.  They say drought-conscious politicians should encourage businesses that help residents save water.

They said other mobile services including carpet cleaning and window washing, dump water into sewer system but have not been cited by the city.

The city responded that it only investigates when a complaint is lodged against a business.

The problem will not be solved until mobile businesses are regulated under a single ordinance, said Stephen Rubenstein, Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce director.

Winslow started The Car Wash Guys five years ago.  The business, whose trucks are outfitted with 200-gallon water tanks, washes, waxes or cleans the interiors of 14,500 cars a week and takes in about $500,000 a year.

Thousand Oaks Mayor Frank Schillo agrees that Winslow's contention that his business leaves very little water on the ground.

Schillo said the city probably will change municipal codes to allow legitimate businesses such as The Car Wash  Guys, to travel throughout the city.

Article reprinted from Los Angeles Times, January 15, 1991.

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