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NCOIL Rejects Motor Vehicle Crash Parts and Repair Model Act

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In a hearing on March 6 in Washington, D.C., the National
Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) Property & Casualty (P&C)
Committee voted to reject the Model Act for Motor Vehicle Crash Parts and
Repair.

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The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) had
participated in debates over the model act since it was introduced in July 2009
and was pleased for it and the numerous other state, national and international
automotive and collision repair associations that opposed it – including the Automotive Service Association (ASA). ASA was represented at the hearing on March 6 by Robert L. Redding, who highlighted provisions found harmful by the ASA Collision Division Operations Committee.

"It’s rewarding to see our longstanding efforts to
defeat this model succeed," said SCRS Chairman Barry Dorn. "Our
membership and affiliates have worked tirelessly to share our opposition with
the legislators on the committee over the past several years, and defeating
this model at NCOIL curtails the inevitable need to oppose the language on a
state-by-state basis had it passed. It’s great to bring home a win for our
constituents!"

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SCRS submitted a final letter of opposition to NCOIL last
week, taking issue with the amendment introduced by Rep. Brian Kennedy (D-RI) by stating:
"This amendment falsely presumes that a certified part will restore a
vehicle to its pre-loss condition and falsely equates that part to an original equipment
manufacturer (OEM) part, since the pre-loss vehicle in almost all instances
would have OEM parts."

This amendment was first accepted by committee members, passing by one vote. But the P&C Insurance Committee followed by defeating the Model Parts Act.

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"During the hearing in D.C., and in the days leading
up to it, SCRS and our partners in opposition to the model became increasingly
convinced that we had the necessary support from the committee members to put
this issue to rest once-and-for-all," said SCRS Executive Director Aaron
Schulenburg. "Given our confidence in the legislators on the committee
during this meeting, we didn’t want to risk that the amendments could delay a
final vote by creating additional discussion over the proposed language."

Once the additional amendments were removed from
consideration, the committee called for an up-and-down vote on the model which
resulted in the vote to oppose.

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While discouraged that the model act didn’t pass, the
Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) was encouraged over the legislators’ response to the aftermarket parts amendment and was pleased that it had the opportunity to educate
the legislators on aftermarket parts.

"Rep. Brian Kennedy’s (D-RI) amendment was an
important step forward in protecting consumers from both poor quality and
overpriced parts," said CAPA Executive Director Jack Gillis. "We’re
pleased to have been able to introduce this issue to these legislators. The
result has been a far better understanding of the impact that the car company
parts monopoly has on the American consumer and our concern that alternative
parts meet important minimum quality levels." 

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