Sunday, 04 May 2008 17:00

Nevada Legislation Addresses Quality Differences in Shops

Assembly Bill 594, revolutionary new legislation in Nevada, has quietly been enacted and implemented. The bill creates a Class A certification designation for body shops that meet certain criteria.

Existing law requires body shops to submit an application to the Department of Motor Vehicles for a license to operate and file a bond in the amount of $10,000 with the Department before doing business in the State. One aspect of this bill created a Class A certification for a body shop that demonstrates compliance with certain criteria.

Significant requirements to obtain a Class A certification include:
1. Provide employees with continuing education and training in subjects and for periods of time as prescribed by regulation. I-CAR gold qualification is required.
2. Be capable of obtaining proper specs for each vehicle being repaired and make three dimensional measurements verified by a computer of each vehicle.
3. Perform a wide range of services including on-site 4-wheel alignment rack; four point anchoring system; multiple pulling posts that can be locked down onto the frame rack; an engine hoist and an onsite ASE certified mechanic; downdraft paint booths with baking capabilities; a valid paint booth permit; I-Car Welding Certificate of Qualification with acceptable welders being an Inverter Resistance welder and a Mig Welder. Regarding customer service, shops must provide ongoing third-party CSI Verification Company with copy of billing as proof.
Before a Class A certificate is issued to a licensed body shop, the Department must inspect the shop to ensure that the body shop meets or exceeds the requirements set forth in the bill and any related regulations. The Department will notify a licensed body shop at least 72 hours before an inspection is performed.
Furthermore, the Department may refuse to issue a license or revoke or refuse to renew a license to operate a body shop based upon specific grounds.

What’s the big deal?

There is a huge disparity in the quality of body shops. Small shops often have lower overhead but are not as well as equipped as some of the larger shops and MROs. Shop owners with state-of-the-art equipment have a higher overhead. Should they receive the same hourly rate as a small, independent shop? By creating a top tier repair license, it enables well-equipped and well-managed shops to benefit economically for their efforts.
This just makes sense. It is the difference between going to a 4-star restaurant and a drive-in. There is no way the 4-star establishment could survive, let alone make a profit, if the prices are equivalent with those at a fast food joint.

New labor rate survey

Along with the new certification class, the state revamped the State Auto Body Survey which is used as a gauge for the insurance industry to assess the prevailing rates in Nevada. This system has long been flawed, delayed, and voluntary. Since a minority of shops never filled out the form, the numbers reflected were never accurate.
The new survey, which is now operational, will be an automated system online, and is a mandatory requirement for license renewal. This new system will help the industry by more accurately reflecting the actual labor rates charged at the door.
Visit www.NCIA.us for information and legislative updates.


Read 2316 times