NORTHEAST NEWS (243)
New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware
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CollisionMax Autobody and Glass Centers recently launched a new program to honor and thank U.S. military veterans by giving away 11 auto body repair jobs in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Eleven U.S. military service veterans in New Jersey and Pennsylvania will receive a free auto body repair over the next year through the Metal of Honor project sponsored by family-owned CollisionMax, an auto body repair business that operates in Philadelphia and suburbs in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
The program kicked off on May 4 at a classic and custom car showcase at its Warminster shop in Warminster, PA. The event featured WMMR-FM radio personality Pierre Robert and “Minerva,” his custom 1972 Volkswagen bus that CollisionMax restored this year.
Long Island Auto Body Repairmen’s Association (LIABRA) members joined New York State Auto Collision Technician Association (NYSACTA) members for its annual Lobby Day held on April 16.
LIABRA members Ed Kizenberger, Hank Hancock and Ed Kizenberger Jr. visited the state capitol in Albany, NY, with more than 30 NYSACTA representatives from all over the state, along with lobbyist Pam Madeiros and staff from NYSACTA’s lobby law firm, Greenberg Traurig, LLP.
The Connecticut House of Representatives approved a bill (Substitute House Bill No. 5072) on May 7 designed to extend a ban on steering by auto physical damages appraisers or third-party insurance administrators (TPAs) to specific repair shops, including auto glass repair and replacement companies.
This bill requires initial communications between a glass claims representative or a third-party claims administrator of an insurance company doing business in Connecticut and the company's insured about automotive glass works or products to inform the insured about his or her right to choose where to have the work done.
It extends a ban on steering by automobile physical damage appraisers. By law, they cannot require or prohibit automotive appraisals or repairs to be performed in or by a specified facility or repair shop. The bill extends this prohibition to glass work performed by a glass shop.
Kevin Murphy, the owner of Ferguson Glass in Saltsburg, PA, has been found guilty and sentenced to death in the 2009 deaths of his mother, sister, and aunt, all three of whom were employees at his shop, according to a representative at the Westmoreland Country District Attorney's (DA) Office of Pennsylvania.
The jury recommended he be sentenced to death on May 7 after deliberating for a few hours. The judge formally sentenced Murphy on May 9.
Murphy, 49, was charged with three counts of first-degree murder and criminal homicide in April 2010, one year after the victims, Edith Cora Tietge, 81, Kris Lynn Murphy, 43, and Doris Lee Murphy, 69, were found dead at his Saltsburg, PA-based auto glass shop on April 23, 2009.
The verdict appears not to have impacted Ferguson Glass business. Donald Shondelmyer, an employee of the auto glass shop, has taken over the business, and currently lives with Murphy's former girlfriend, Susan McGuire, who previously had a relationship with Murphy, 52, of Conemaugh Township, Indiana County.
Westmoreland County District Attorney John Peck argued that Murphy was guilty of three counts of first degree murder for fatally shooting his mother, sister and aunt four years ago because they did not approve of his relationship with McGuire, who was married to another man at the time.
Over 2,300 students from 84 trade and technical schools in New York competed in trade and leadership contests at the New York State Leadership Conference and Skills Championships April 24-26 at the State Fairgrounds.
Hosted by the New York Association of SkillsUSA, the convention showcased the skills of vocational students and their instructors.
The contests tested skills in automotive technology, auto collision repair, carpentry, cosmetology, culinary arts, electronics repair and health care. In addition, students competed in public speaking, job demonstrations, job interview and other contests related to their course of study.
Scholarships and tools worth a total of $250,000 were awarded to student winners at the awards ceremony on April 26 at the Center of Progress Building.
In our January issue, we published “Troy, NY, Rejects Repeated Request for Use Permit for Former Body Shop Location.” Search www.autobodynews.com/ northeast-news. Here’s an update on the story ...
The zoning board in the city of Troy in New York repeatedly rejected a special use permit for a local tow operator to open an auto repair shop at the location of a former body shop called Ward’s Auto Body off Fifth Avenue.
Instead, owner Jack Cox Jr. wants to open up a take-out food restaurant and ice cream stand on the same plot of land and call it “Jack’s Snack Shack.”
Pennsylvania-based Keenan Auto Body Inc. has been selected as one of Philly.com’s Top Workplaces. Philly.com’s annual list of Top Workplaces is determined from employee feedback.
“Keenan Auto Body employees all have one thing in common and that is that we all share in our unique positive culture that enables us to make the important decisions and to do what is right for our customers without having our hands tied,” said Craig Camacho, marketing director for Keenan Auto Body.
“We are given the tools that are needed and are proud to be held accountable for our actions. We work extremely hard to provide a positive culture for a rewarding employment experience and this has always been a primary goal of our leadership team…”
For the full list of Philly.com’s Top Workplaces, and selection criteria visit topworkplaces.com.
In the Franklin Township of New Jersey, police are looking for two Good Samaritans who pulled a man from his car after it smashed into a tree and caught fire.
According to officer Dominick Zeveney, the victim probably would have sustained life-threatening injuries without the assistance of the samaritans.
Brandi Gill, a junior in Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School’s auto body program, has been selected as Full Time Student of the Month for April 2013, according to an article published online by NJ.com. Brandi is the daughter of Jami Gill of Bradley Gardens, NJ, west of Somerville.
Guidance Counselor Mrs. Sarah Morelli-Stutz nominated Brandi because she has maintained an excellent GPA and is a “responsible, conscientious young lady.” Mr. George Byrd, Brandi’s Auto Body Instructor, described her as, “persistent, consistent and inquisitive.” Mr. Byrd went on to add that Brandi is a good student who is a “pleasure to work with.”
At SCVTHS, Brandi is a member of the softball team and was recently inducted into the National Honor Society. In addition, Brandi is a member of SkillsUSA who is competing in the New Jersey SkillsUSA Championships in the Auto Body Custom Painting category.
Outside of school, Brandi is a member of the 4H-Go-kart Club, where she has served as the secretary for the past 3 years. In her spare time, Brandi holds a job working at Wendy’s, where she is earning money so that she can buy a car. After graduating from SCVTHS, Brandi plans on furthering her education to pursue a business degree.
The Long Island Auto Body Repairmen’s Association (LIABRA) held its March 19 meeting at Greg and Bill’s Auto Body Shop in Medford, NY. The meeting was held in a Town Hall format with an open forum on claims handling problems and solutions. Members were invited to bring problems and solutions for discussion.
Greg and Bill’s Auto Body has been a member and supporter of LIABRA for many years. Greg Smith established Greg and Bill’s in 1967 and it is a family-owned and operated business. Greg and his son Scott, along with a staff of six, take care of the day-to-day operations and Greg’s wife Phyllis takes care of bookkeeping and finances. LIABRA thanks Greg Smith and family for providing their beautiful facility for the meeting and Enterprise Rent-A-Car for the food and refreshments.
Police arrested a 66-year-old Asbury Park, NJ, man who they say burglarized a body shop in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy. Andray Glover was arrested on charges of burglary and possession of burglary tools. Glover burglarized Samuel’s Auto Body on Nov. 4, said Police Chief Robert Adams. He said Glover was connected to the burglary after a thorough investigation, which included physical evidence. Glover is being held at the Monmouth County jail, Freehold Township, in lieu of $52,000 bail.