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Western News

1HomePageMap small w 0816Local news stories affecting the auto body industry in California, NevadaOregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Hawaii, Alaska and Wyoming

A bill to reduce the required auto insurance coverage for low-income families in Clark County has quietly died in the Nevada Senate as of May 31, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

“The Republicans didn’t have an appetite for it,” said Assemblyman Kelvin Atkinson, D-Las Vegas, the sponsor of Assembly Bill 299, according to the Las Vegas Sun. “We’ll fight another day.”

The Senate Commerce, Labor and Energy Committee approved the bill on a 4-3 vote, but it never came up for a vote in the full Senate before the May 31 deadline.

The bill would have allowed a household to qualify with a gross annual income at or below 250 percent of the federally designated poverty level.

The current law requires minimum coverage of $15,000, or $30,000 for two or more individuals for death and injury. It requires $10,000 in coverage for property damage.

Mitchell International hosted an Open House for CAA members at their new Mitchell Technology Campus in the University City area of San Diego on May 24th.

The CAA San Diego Chapter partnered with Mitchell International to host the Open House so that CAA members could get a unique insider’s view of Mitchell’s collision information software and their new development facility for their approximately 850 San Diego employees.

The event was well attended with over 100 participants. Marc Brungger, Executive Vice President of Auto Physical Damage Solutions for Mitchell, opened the meeting with a warm welcome to CAA members and their guests. Mitchell provided small group tours of their editorial and software development areas and explained how volumes of information, from a multitude of sources, is turned into state-of-the art tools for collision repair professionals. Mitchell also hosted a casual dinner at the end of the tour.

The 1st stop on the tour was presented by Tim Schuh, Director of IT Support. Tim provided an overview of Mitchell’s IT operations and explained that Mitchell’s “Command Center” is comprised of approximately 1,500 servers in multiple locations to ensure best performance and redundancy.

The San Diego chapter of the California Autobody Association (CAA) held their 17th annual golf tournament on June 4 at the Twin Oaks Golf Course in San Marcos.

The event had a large turnout with 94 players, the best the chapter has seen in years, according to chapter President Hop Sanchez.

“This was our best CAA San Diego Chapter turnout with 94 players. We also want to extend a special thanks to Dee and Joe at check-in and Dee selling raffle tickets from Enterprise,” said Sanchez.

Auto Body World Collision Centers, based in Phoenix with several shops in the south-central past of the state, will add its eighth location, the company announced May 31.

The new 34,000-square-foot shop, located on W. Chandler Blvd. in Chandler, AZ, will open in June. Auto Body World Collision Centers was founded in 1962 and is Arizona's largest independently owned multi-shop operator, with shops throughout the Phoenix and Casa Grande markets.

“This addition is an important step in Auto Body World’s overall growth strategy, which includes deeper expansion into Arizona,” said Mark Turner, Auto Body World’s president, "This is a great opportunity for us, and we look forward to many more like it."

“This new location compliments our footprint very nicely because it allows us to serve consumers and our insurance partners along the 1-10 corridor in the east valley,” said Auto Body World CEO, David Fait. The new location will bridge the gap between the company's south Gilbert location and their Casa Grande location.

Auto Body World Collision Centers is continuing to seek out well-run companies throughout Arizona for acquisition. Interested owners should contact Auto Body World President Mark Turner at m.turner@autobodyworld.com. For more information on the company please visit autobodyworld.com.

The California Autobody Association Board of Directors met on May 14th at the Holiday Inn on the Bay in San Diego, CA. This was the 2nd quarter board meeting for 2011, the first was held in Sacramento in February.

The CAA began the meeting by announcing their new endorsed insurance broker for CAA members, Owen-Dunn. Tim Dickison with Own-Dunn discussed the partnership with CAA and their commitment to providing CAA members with competitive pricing through approved carriers, along with superior risk and cost containment support services. CAA members can contact Owen-Dunn when their Workers Compensation and Liability Insurance comes up for renewal. Tim can be contacted at 916-993-2755 or timd@owendunn.com.

Tony Endres with Furnace Dynamics reported on the status of Rule 1147 which currently affects the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) but could be addressed by all the districts throughout California and would include body shops. Rule 1147 is a retrofit rule that is designed to lower NOx emissions on a wide variety of sources to specific ppm levels. These levels are determined by the type of equipment and the temperature of operation. The CAA has been working with various groups, including Tony, and will be working with others to make sure the industry conforms to reasonable emission limits.

Verifacts Automotive spoke about their new program for CAA members titled “Business Ethics and Integrity with Emphasis on BAR." The objective is to train and empower shops to have the highest level of ethics and integrity and to differentiate them in the eyes of consumers, government, and insurance companies. CAA and Verifacts will be sending out additional information about these programs.

Edward Flak, the Temecula, CA, marine who had his '94 Mustang GT repaired for him secretly while he was on his third tour in the Middle East in April, received a donation from the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of California to help cover some of the cars continued costs.

Precision Paint and Body Works, the body shop that did the body work on Flaks car, agreed to donate about half of the $7,800 it cost to repair the vehicle in April.

The Flaks were happy to have so much of the work on the car donated by Precision and the other businesses that agreed to donate some work, but this still left them with about a $3,000 repair bill after all was said and done.

When the Commander Donald Durnil, of the Temecula Valley VFW, found out that the Flaks still owed money for the car makeover he asked for the California VFW to donate money to help pay.

Durnil reached out to Jim Rowoldt, the State Adjutant/Quartermaster, to see if they could come up with more of a donation.
"They {the Flaks} don't make a lot, and that's a hefty bill," said Durnil.

The Temecula Valley VFW Post originally came up with a $200 donation for the Flaks back in April but knew this would not cover the last of their costs.