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John Yoswick

John YoswickJohn Yoswick is a freelance automotive writer based in Portland, Oregon, who has been writing about the collision industry since 1988. He is the editor of the weekly CRASH Network (for a free 4-week trial subscription, visit www.CrashNetwork.com).


He can be contacted at john@crashnetwork.com 

Thursday, 05 March 2020 23:51

Long-time Industry Lobbyist Offers Perspectives on Government’s Role in Industry Issues

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Long-time Automotive Service Association lobbyist Bob Redding spoke with Autobody News’s John Yoswick in Redding’s Washington, D.C., offices. Long-time Automotive Service Association lobbyist Bob Redding spoke with Autobody News’s John Yoswick in Redding’s Washington, D.C., offices. Sheri LaFlamme

Index

Bob Redding serves as the industry’s eyes, ears and voice in Washington, D.C.

As the national lobbyist for the Automotive Service Association, Redding helps keep the autobody industry (along with the mechanical service industry) appraised on legislative and regulatory activities and proposals, and brings the industry’s viewpoint to table when lawmakers or government agencies are making decisions.
 
During a recent interview in his office, just a five-minute walk from key U.S. Senate office buildings, Redding talked about some of the topics he’s engaged in as part of his work for ASA. 
 
Almost every year, for example, the association opposes efforts to curtail or even eliminate existing state vehicle inspection programs. This year there are been proposals to scale back the inspection programs in Virginia and West Virginia.
 
Redding said in addition to helping shops in those states voice support for the vehicle safety inspection programs, ASA is supporting efforts to add such programs in those states without them, including California.
 
“There’s interest there, but we’ve got to get a study first, and that’s what we’re working on now,” Redding said of the multi-association effort in California.
 
Redding said such programs---in place in only about 15 states---are increasingly important as ride-share and other trends reduce private ownership of vehicles in use. 
 
Those riding in such vehicles should be able to expect they’ve been maintained and repaired properly, Redding said, but those owning them may not “have skin in the game” for ensuring that happens.
 
“If your family needs some cash so you’re driving for Uber or Lyft, (safe repairs) might not be the first thing you have in mind as long as the car is blowing and going,” Redding said. “We think with new vehicle technologies, somebody needs to be looking at these vehicles. Not just post-repair inspection, but also some type of annual or biennial vehicle safety inspection.” 
 
A topic Redding said he thinks the industry should be more attuned to is eminent domain, the right of a local or state government to expropriate private property for public use. 

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