The Riverside County city is considering limiting the number of car washes, citing an over saturation of car-cleaning businesses. Craig Fiegener reports from Norco for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2012.
A saturation of car washes in Norco has city officials pondering whether to ban new car-cleaning businesses from setting up shop in the Riverside County city of about 27,500.
The City Council is set to discuss the ban at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Near Hammer Avenue and the 15 Freeway there are at least seven car washes, each with varying services such as self-service or detail work.
“It’s saturated already within a mile-and-a-half radius. There’s too many,” said Bryan Seng, owner of Norco Hills Car Wash.
If adopted, the law appears to be written to protect locally-owned businesses like the Norco Hills Car Wash.
Of the two biggest car washes in the area, one is owned by an out-of-town oil company, while the other is owned and supervised locally.
With so many car washes in the area, customers are chiming in on the debate to ban more car wash businesses. Mayor Kevin Bash as well as already established car wash owners support the ban, but some residents aren’t so quick to agree.
“If they're supporting themselves, obviously there's a need. They're staying in business. What's the problem? I don't get it,” said Erik Moberly.
A 2006 study on the Hamner Avenue business corridor suggested eliminating certain businesses that prevented the city from generating sales tax, according to the Press Enterprise.
Norco already imposes a ban on self-storage units, which generate little sales tax revenue, according to the Press Enterprise.