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Monday, 12 October 2020 21:52

‘Right-to-Repair’ Referendum in MA Different Than Issue in NH

Written by David Brooks, Concord Monitor
Jeff Chaplain, owner of Village Street Garage in Penacook, NH, works on a vehicle on Oct. 8. Chaplain is an independent car repair operation but has no problem with the dealerships. He can get all the technical data he needs and feels there is work for everyone. Jeff Chaplain, owner of Village Street Garage in Penacook, NH, works on a vehicle on Oct. 8. Chaplain is an independent car repair operation but has no problem with the dealerships. He can get all the technical data he needs and feels there is work for everyone. Geoff Forester/Monitor staff

Index

A group called Repair.org got versions of laws proposed in about 20 states, including New Hampshire.

 

In New Hampshire, right-to-repair came before the Legislature last year in a “digital electronic product repair” bill that was sent to a study committee. It would require makers of electronic products to provide independent repair facilities with diagnostic and repair information. Since almost everything these days has electronics in it, the result could be quite sweeping.

 

At hearings in Concord, NH, last year, a number of industry people warned amateurs would use the information to override safety equipment on appliances or turn off pollution controls on lawn tractors---a possibility that led the Department of Environmental Services to urge the bill be killed.

 

Concerns were also raised about being first in the nation, something we usually embrace. Several lawmakers were worried if a small state like New Hampshire unilaterally passed the bill, some manufacturers might refuse to sell their products here.

 

We thank the Concord Monitor for reprint permission.


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