RVIA’s Efforts Exempt RVs from New Jersey Bill
The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) was successful in exempting RVs from a New Jersey bill titled the “Motor Vehicle Owners Right to Repair Act” that was patterned after similar legislation passed in Massachusetts last year.
According to a press release, the bill, now moving through legislative process, requires motor vehicle manufacturers to provide motor vehicle owners and independent repair shops with access to the same repair information and tools given to automotive dealer repair facilities.
Under the legislation’s provision, a manufacturer of motor vehicles sold in the state must make available for purchase the same diagnostic and repair information, including repair technical updates, provided to its dealers, to owners and independent repair facilities for motor vehicles model year 2002 and newer. Also, a violation would be an unlawful practice, which under the Consumer Fraud Act is punishable by a monetary penalty of not more than $10,000 for a first offense and not more than $20,000 for any subsequent offense.
RVIA was also successful in exempting RVs from the Massachusetts Right to Repair legislation that was passed in December 2013 after a lengthy and circuitous process. The association sought the RV exemption in Massachusetts because the bill required motor vehicle manufacturers to use an out dated SAE standard for on-board diagnostics. The penalty for non-compliance was severe – a prohibition on selling vehicles in Massachusetts commencing with the 2018 model year.
A similar proposal in Maine is also under consideration. The Maine legislature was waiting to see how Massachusetts handled their “Right to Repair” bill before proceeding. At this time, no action is scheduled.
“RVIA works to exempt RVs from right-to-repair legislation because these initiatives are aimed at the automobile and light truck markets and have provisions that the RV industry is simply not able to comply with because of the differences in the vehicles and the industries,” said RVIA’s Jay Landers, senior director of government affairs.