Right to Repair Bill Stalled in Massachusetts House

August 02, 2010

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Following unanimous passage in the state Senate, the Massachusetts House of Representatives took no action on the Right to Repair bill.

The right to repair bill would require manufacturers such as Toyota, GM, Ford and others to share relevant repair and safety information with local neighborhood automotive technicians and repair shops. Although much of the discussion involves car owners, the bill would apply to all vehicles, including heavy-duty commercial trucks.

"The Right to Repair issue has become the most talked-about consumer protection bill on Beacon Hill, and its momentum here made an impact nationwide," said Art Kinsman, spokesman for the Right to Repair Coalition. "Lawmakers and consumers now understand that Right to Repair legislation is needed now to level the playing field for the car repair industry and save money for the consumer."

According to the Coalition, the bill was stalled in the House as debate over bills was going on.

"We vow to come back stronger than ever," Kinsman said. "This is a piece of unfinished business that has a major impact on every person who owns a car."

The bill also protects automobile manufacturers' proprietary information, eliminating the possibility of aftermarket parts production. Vehicle security codes are also protected by the legislation.

At the federal level, the Motor Vehicle Owners' Right to Repair Act was recently introduced into the U.S. Senate by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) and has four co-sponsors. The House version was introduced by Reps. Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and George Miller (D-Calif.) and currently has 67 co-sponsors.

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