'Aftermarket Truth Squad' Refutes ASA and Car Companies' Claims Against Independent Repairers During New York 'Right to Repair' Hearing, States CARE

Jun 21, 2010, 09:10 ET from Coalition for Auto Repair Equality

ALEXANDRIA, Va. June 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On June 9, 2010, at a hearing on the New York Right to Repair Act (SB 7302 and AB 6634), the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection heard testimony from the New York automotive aftermarket refuting the misinformation that the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers (AAM), The Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association (GNYADA) and the Automotive Service Association (ASA) gave falsely claiming  that "all of the automobile repair information is available and the Right to Repair Act is not necessary."

Donny Seyfer, a Colorado-based General Director for ASA said, "I don't have problems of not having (repair) information because I only work on brands that I know I can repair."   Seyfer, during his travels, has recommended to independent repairers that they reduce the number and types of models they repair.

"Unfortunately, that leaves independent repairers at the continued mercy of the car companies which may decide to eliminate certain brands or merge, leaving the independent repairers with even fewer vehicles to repair," stated Sandy Bass-Cors, Executive Director for the Coalition for Auto Repair Equality (CARE).

"Mr. Seyfer's statement sounds as if there are brands that he can't repair and therefore has 'settled' for repairing only a few models while telling the New York legislators that repair information is not a problem.

"Mr. Seyfer's statement is in direct conflict with his friends, the car companies and new car dealers," continued Bass-Cors, "because Lou Giordano, President of the GNYDA, said that the 'only way to survive is to repair all makes and models.'"

False testimony by Matthew Godlewski, Vice President of Government Affairs for the AAM in Washington, D.C., stated that "Congress and the states have repeatedly said No to the Right to Repair Act."  The fact is, that the only vote that Right to Repair has had in Congress was in May 2006, in the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection, where it passed.  No state has rejected the Right to Repair Act.  In fact, the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate have reintroduced Right to Repair in this Congress.

In addition, Dave Trebing, Manager of State Government Affairs for Mercedes Benz/Daimler, said that "Right to Repair raises issues of warranty repairs on parts.

Bass-Cors said, "Trebing's statement on warranty work is misleading since Right to Repair is not a 'parts' bill and passage of the Magnuson-Moss Act in Congress prohibits repairs from being tied to warranties.

"Using semantics to make it appear that Congress and the states have voted down Right to Repair is not only misleading, it's a disservice to the aftermarket small businesses who are continually hoping to have this bill passed.  Also misleading is the myth that Consumer Reports magazine opposes the Right to Repair Act.  While that was true many years ago, Consumer Reports supports Right to Repair if it's limited to repair. That was in its May 2009, article, which the car companies, ASA and the new car dealerships conveniently forget," concluded Bass-Cors.

CARE is a nonprofit, national organization that represents many aftermarket companies in the five-million-employee, 495,000 business-strong aftermarket.

SOURCE Coalition for Auto Repair Equality