City Turns Off Water on Car Wash Owner, $200k Debt
SALISBURY, MD — Neil Hitchcock, owner of Oasis Car Wash and former president of the International Carwash Association, is hoping the city of Salisbury will understand his predicament and help him get the water turned back on at the business so he can repay a $200,000 outstanding water capacity fee, according to The Daily Times.
The report said the water was turned off about two weeks ago because of the debt, which was a capacity fee charged for an unexpected volume of water used at the carwash over a period of 60 months.
The one-time, upfront payment was based on his carwash using 20-40 gallons per carwash or less, but he later realized he was using hundreds of gallons per wash instead. Hitchcock blamed the problem on technology (assumedly a water reclaim system) that was incorrectly installed.
According to the story, Hitchcock has been in a few financial pickles before. Maryland court records show he has had “several cases with different banks that sought judgments from $100,000 to $1 million,” the report said.
At least three checks attempting to go towards the water debt had bounced in the past year, but they were all eventually rectified, the newspaper said.
City Council members hedged on approving a payment schedule, with one councilwoman worrying it could set “quite a precedent” and others wondering why the plan hadn’t been brought to a work session.