This chapter also applies to a vehicle that has been abandoned on rental property. An owner of rental property who finds a vehicle believed to be abandoned on the owner’s property shall have the Police Department do the following:
   (A)   Attach in a prominent place a notice tag containing the following information:
      (1)   The date, time, owner’s name, and address and telephone number to contact for information;
      (2)   That the vehicle is considered abandoned;
      (3)   That the vehicle will be removed after 72 hours;
      (4)   That the owner of the vehicle will be held responsible for all costs incidental to the removal, storage, and disposal of the vehicle; and
      (5)   That the owner of the vehicle may avoid costs by removal of the vehicle or parts within 72 hours.
   (B)   Contact the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to obtain the name and address of the owner of the vehicle; and
   (C)   Deliver, by certified mail, a copy of the information contained in the notice required under division (A) to the owner of the vehicle.
      (1)   If, after 72 hours, the owner of the vehicle believed to be abandoned has not removed the vehicle from the rental property, the owner of the rental property may have the vehicle towed from the rental property. The owner of the rental property shall give the towing operator a copy of the certified letter required under division (C) above as proof that notice of the towing has been given.
      (2)   A towing operator who tows a vehicle under division (C)(1)above shall give notice to the city and Bureau of Motor Vehicles that the abandoned vehicle is in the possession of the towing operator. Within 72 hours after removal of an abandoned vehicle to a storage area under § 96.05 of this chapter, the city shall prepare and forward to the Bureau an abandoned vehicle report containing a description of the vehicle including the make, model, engine number, if any, identification number, and the number of the license plate, and request that the Bureau advise the city of the name and most recent mailing address of the owner and any lien holder.
      (3)   The Bureau shall:
         (a)   Conduct a reasonable search through the National Automobile Theft Bureau and the State Police Department to determine whether the vehicle or parts have been reported as stolen;
         (b)   Conduct a reasonable search of Bureau records to determine the owner of the vehicle or parts or lien holder of record; and
         (c)   1.   If a reasonable search discloses the name and address of the owner or lien holder, mail a written notice, by first class mail to:
               a.   The owner, with copy to any lien holder if the Bureau disposes of the vehicle; or
               b.   The city if the city disposes of the vehicle; indicating that the vehicle or parts have been impounded at a certain location and must be removed within 15 days of the date of mailing of the notice and advising that the vehicle or parts will be disposed of after that time.
            2.   The Bureau or the city shall further advise the owner or any lien holder that all costs incurred in removing and storing the vehicle or parts are his or her legal responsibility. If the vehicle or parts are in such condition that vehicle identification numbers or other means of identification are not available to determine the owner or lien holder the vehicle may be disposed of without notice.
            3.   If the owner or lien holder does not appear within 15 days after the mailing of notice, the Bureau, the city shall sell the vehicle or parts to the highest bidder at a public sale conducted after notice under I.C. 5-3-1, except only one newspaper insertion one week before public sale is required.
            4.   The purchaser shall be furnished a bill of sale for each abandoned vehicle sold by the Bureau or public agency. The fee for the bill of sale is $6.
(Ord. 2001-08, passed 5-8-2001)