With crucial midterm elections less than three weeks away, the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association and the Coalition for Auto Repair Equality on Thursday, Oct. 14, expressed their appreciation to the 76 members of Congress who have co-sponsored the Motor Vehicle Owners Right to Repair Act.
“By co-sponsoring the pro-consumer and pro-small business Right to Repair Act, these members of Congress have demonstrated by their actions that they are committed to a competitive vehicle repair market,” says Kathleen Schmatz, AAIA president and chief executive officer. “The Right to Repair Act ensures that all vehicle owners can continue to enjoy the convenience and affordability of having their vehicle serviced at the repair shop of their choice, whether at their neighborhood repair shop or a new car dealership.”
The Right to Repair Act would require that car companies provide full access at a reasonable cost to all nonproprietary service information, tools and safety-related bulletins needed to repair motor vehicles. The legislation provides car companies with strong protections for their trade secrets, only requiring them to make available the same diagnostic and repair information they provide their franchised dealers to the independent vehicle repair market. A broad group of state and national consumer and industry organizations support passage of right to repair legislation, including AAA, American Military Society, Automotive Recyclers Association, National Grange, Motorcycle Riders Foundation, RetireSafe and 60 Plus.
The Right to Repair Act has bipartisan support in both chambers of Congress. The House version (H.R. 2057) was introduced by Reps. Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and George Miller (D-Calif.) and currently has 71 co-sponsors. The Senate version of the bill (S. 3181) was introduced by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) and has five co-sponsors.
“We are expecting more members of Congress to sign on as co-sponsors post-election,” says Sandy Bass-Cors, executive director of CARE. “During this time of lost jobs and a recession, it’s more important than ever that motoring consumers know that there are members of Congress who stand up for them and their personal property choices by co-sponsoring the pro-consumer, pro-competition Right to Repair Act.”