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AAIA continues push for Right to Repair Act

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Jan. 3, 2011— As the nation’s new Congress prepared to convene this week, the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) renewed its push for passage of the Right to Repair Act.

Formally known as the Motor Vehicle Owners’ Right to Repair Act, the legislation would require car companies to release_notes all non-proprietary service information, tools and safety-related bulletins to independent repairers. Companies already provide those resources to dealer shops, which AAIA claims is inequitable.

A wide variety of groups, such as military representatives, senior citizens, motorcycle riders and others have come out in support of the act, the AAIA said.

“Consumers benefit from competition and these groups know that their members are at a disadvantage when neighborhood auto repair shops are denied ready access to non-proprietary service information and tools needed to properly maintain today’s highly sophisticated motor vehicles,” said Kathleen Schmatz, president and CEO of AAIA.

Independent shops and aftermarket parts associations have lobbied for roughly a decade to get various versions of the Right to Repair Act through Congress, without success. Car companies and affiliated dealers have generally opposed the act because of concerns about divulging company secrets. AAIA claims the legislation provides protections for those secrets, but opposition hasn’t dissipated in recent years.

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