PTROI Response to “Illinois, Where are we Heading” Editorial


This letter is in response to the guest editorial by Tim Downs which recently appeared in your publication.  I am hoping to get equal time and I will try to be brief, although the original article is very lengthy.

Mr. Downs appears to not be happy with anyone.

To begin with he, points out that a national repossession association is probably not going to work because of different state requirements. What about power buying in terms of tires, uniforms, software, computers and such. Perhaps if the repo companies get together on a national basis thy can try to help their industry in Washington, D.C., much like TRAA does.

You go on to address an “open door policy”. No business that I know of has a totally open door policy. Much of what they do not disclose regards their client list, their price structure, pay structure and other such proprietary information. Are you going to open your doors for everyone to see? I have my doubts.

You mention Jon Jendral, who is a friend of mine. You are disturbed about his position on the board of the PTROI.  I believe it is a credit to Jon and IRA that he has taken the initiative to be on our board of directors.

He can keep a finger on the pulse on the entire towing industry in Illinois. Jon, and the other repo professionals that are PTROI members received information from our office two weeks ago as to how they can save thousands of dollars on truck purchases and hundreds on tires and other truck parts.

Regarding your claim that you did not get invited back, we allow you to come to one meeting without being a member. At this meeting you come back with loads of information that cost you nothing. It is unfair to our paid members to keep giving this information that they paid for to people like yourself, who think they should ride on everyone else’s coat tails. This law was put out by the trucking industry and fully supported by the PTROI. What can you tell me about it? We also have a fuel program, Office Depot program, and a tire program. Before you slam our association, you need to get the full story.  The PTROI works hard for the Illinois tower every day.

You say that we need to notify the lienholder. We do notify the lienholder within 2 business days. Is it our fault that they do not always respond in a timely manner? I had a finance company call us three years after we towed the car to get the charges! Now you go on to criticize the prices we charge. That only goes to show you have absolutely no clue about what a police tower does. We are required to have a secure lot and building, we must respond within 15-20 minutes, we must have more insurance coverage and more qualified drivers than a regular tower, we may have to do relocations at no charge, we must deal with the customers at our yard, we must make notice to owners and lienholders at $6.59 per letter plus the title search and labor, and then after all of that 20-30% of the vehicles are not picked up. None of this comes cheap. You cry about what we charge, but YOU GET REIMBURSED!! That just leaves me speechless. And, as far as you charging no storage, if you don’t like it, don’t do the work, or join your association and help come up with ideas to generate storage.

Mr. Downs, in keeping with the professionalism exhibited by the PTROI and IRA, I will not tell what I personally think of you. You should thank PTROI and IRA for the work they done for you. You need to stop writing about the problems in your industry, you need to start coming up with solutions. It is obvious you think it not worthwhile to belong to any association, so you need to calm down the rhetoric until you join IRA and become an active, productive member and then, with the help of IRA, you may become a more profitable, successful company.


Ed Forsythe

Executive Director

Professional Towing and Recovery Operators of Illinois



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