Auchincloss Fears Right-To-Repair Plan Will Hurt Independent Biz

Congressman Jake Auchincloss and a pair of his colleagues are worried a right-to-repair compromise struck this summer will carry a range of negative consequences for consumers, and they want a meeting with regulators to better understand the path forward.

Auchincloss, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez of Washington and Rep. Jared Golden of Maine warned in a new letter that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s recommended approach for implementing a Massachusetts law “disadvantages independent repair shops.”

After initially suggesting the 2020 voter-approved law would clash with federal safety standards, NHTSA officials in August said manufacturers could comply with the measure by providing wireless access to vehicle systems “from within close proximity distance to the vehicle” but not from a further distance.

The trio of Democrats in Congress said the framework “may hurt small businesses and consumers.”

“NHTSA is suggesting creating a double standard wherein manufacturers’ long-range remote access is deemed less risky than similar access from an independent repair shop,” they wrote.

“We are concerned that the path forward NHTSA proposed in its August 22nd letter will entrench manufacturers’ dominance in the repair market in the long run, harm competition, and discourage other states from pursuing comprehensive right to repair legislation,” the lawmakers concluded. “We respectfully request a briefing from NHTSA to explain how remote access risks differ between manufacturers and independent repair shops, and how its proposed solution will affect competition in the marketplace to help consumers.”

Massachusetts voters in 2020 supported a change to state law aimed at ensuring that owners and independent repair shops can access vehicle telematic data needed for modern maintenance. Manufacturers had challenged the law in court.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Source link