m23.jpg (14023 bytes)Parents, City at Odds Over Carwash Ban
by Psyche Pascual

THOUSAND OAKS - A Thousand Oaks proposal to restrict carwash operators could jeopardize the efforts of two marching bands to raise money for uniforms and instruments, parents say.

City code enforcement officials have threatened to stop traveling carwash operator Lance Winslow from holding a benefit carwash for Newbury Park High School and Sequoia Intermediate School.  They say the carwash could dump pollutants into the city's sewer system.

The City Council will discuss a proposal to ban mass carwashes at its meeting Tuesday.

In a report to the council, Don LaVoie, city code enforcement supervisor, recommended that carwashes be banned unless operators properly dispose of the water they use.  LaVoie said Friday that he recommended the action because of state codes that prevent dumping polluted water into sewers.

Although Winslow contends that the water he uses is not polluted, he was ordered in January to stop washing cars until he received a permit from the Regional Water Quality Control Board.

Newbury Park High School's carwash is scheduled for Saturday at the Mobil gas station near Borchard Road and Michael Drive in Thousand Oaks.

If the city decides to ban carwashes, the event may be moved, Winslow said.

"We've never had a problem in any other city except in Thousand Oaks." he said.

Last year, Winslow said, he held a fund-raiser for Newbury Park High School that brought in $11,000.  It was used to pay for band uniforms and musical equipment.

One parent said he is angry that city officials are considering prohibiting the event.

"This is causing a lot of confusion and anger and frustration.  [Parents] can't believe the city would do this," said Hank Lacayo, former president of the Newbury Park High School Panther Band Boosters.  "This is money that we're sorely in need of."

Reprinted from The Los Angeles Times, September 1991.

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