CAA Legislative Update 2019
- Unsafe Used Tires. Support. AB 949 would prohibit an automotive repair dealer from installing a used unsafe tire as specified. Status: Signed by Governor.
- Independent Contractors vs Employees. AB 5. Concerns. This bill would provide the factors of the “ABC” test, as specified, to be applied to determine the status of workers as employee or independent contractor. The bill was amended to provide an exemption between business to business, which would include automotive repair shops conducting sublet repairs with third party vendors, provided that vendor meets the specified independent contractor criteria. Status: Signed by Governor.
- Battery Fees. AB 142. Concerns. Current law requires both consumers and manufacturers to pay a $1.00 for each new battery sold until April 2022, at which point the consumer fee would increase to $2.00 and the manufacturer fee would be eliminated. This bill would instead require the manufacturer fee to increase to $2.00 starting April 2022, for a total of $4.00 battery fee. Status: Signed by Governor.
- Electronic Receipts-Paper Waste. AB 161. Concerns. Requires a business to provide a proof of purchase to consumer only at the consumer option. Also prohibits proof of purchase from containing bisphenol A or bisphenol S. The bill exempts Invoices. Status: held in Committee. Two year bill.
- Private Post-Secondary Education. AB 1343 & AB 1345. Oppose unless amended. These bills are part of of bill package targeting bad actors in the Private Post-Secondary Education. These bills need to be amended to address concerns, otherwise they will negatively impact good performing schools including Universal Technical Institute (UTI). Status: Both bills held in Committee. Two year bills.
- Minimum Franchise Tax. SB 349. Support. This bill would reduce the minimum franchise tax, as provided, based on the gross receipts of a corporation. The bill is sponsored by the California Small Business Association. Status: Vetoed.
- California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) Bills. AB 25, AB 874, AB 1146, AB 1355 and AB 1564. These bills made changes to clarify and to ease CCPA compliance for California businesses. Status: All bills signed by Governor. The Attorney General is also proposing regulations to further clarify the CCPA. (See regulatory update below).
- Vehicle Exhaust Noise. AB 112. Allows an individual who is cited for exhaust noise standard violation to fix the noise violation and provide proof of correction. Status. Held in Committee – Two year bill.
- New Motor Vehicle Board.AB 179. This bill, among other things, requires vehicle manufacturers to reimburse new car dealers for warranty repairs based on specified formula. Status; Signed by Governor.
- Tire Tax. Oppose. AB 755 would have established a new tax of $1.50 per tire, on top of the current $1.75 tax already charged for a total of $3.25. The additional revenue would go to storm-water projects that remediate zinc pollutants. Status: Died on Assembly Floor, Two year bill.
- Sales Tax on Labor. Oppose. SB 522 intends to make major tax reforms including expanding the sales tax to all services, including automotive repair labor. We believe that this bill will most likely move next year. Status: Senate Rules Committee – Two year bill.
Upcoming Legislative & Regulatory Proposals
Below are legislative/regulatory proposals being considered in Sacramento for next year.
Auto Body Regulations. BAR is proposing regulations to update collision repair equipment requirements and standards for repairs to supplemental restraint systems. A workshop is being held on October 17, 2019 to discuss. See link for proposed text. https://www.bar.ca.gov/pdf/Collision_Repair_Proposals_Workshop_Draft_Text_10.17.19.pdf
Auto Repair Industry and Rating System. Concerns. There continues to be talks of legislation that would create a grading system for all auto repair shops similar to restaurants which would help consumers distinguish between good shops from bad. Assembly member Low (Chair of the Business and Profession Committee) wants to provide consumers with shop disciplinary information and will be introducing legislation next year. We will work with the assembly member during the interim for possible alternative solutions, including legislation that would expedite the disciplinary process without jeopardizing any repair shop due process rights. See Auto Body News Article. https://www.autobodynews.com/index.php/western/item/18589-will-california-establish-ratings-systems-for-body-shops.html
California Safety Inspection program. There has been discussions of introducing legislation to establish a vehicle safety inspection program in California. In 2017, Assembly member Chau carried AB 475 which would have required salvage vehicles to pass a safety inspection before the vehicle could be re-registered with the DMV. AB 475 was eventually dropped due to concerns raised by the auto auction yards and insurers. We will continue working and monitoring whether another safety inspection bill will be introduced next session.
Transmission Fluids. The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), along with assistance from BAR is in the process of developing new regulations for lubricants including transmission fluids specifications, advertising and labeling requirements. Current CDFA concerns involve automotive repair dealer’s adding additives to base fluid (Multivehicle Transmission Fluids) to meet OEM performance requirements. CDFA has indicated that these additives may not be compliant with California laws. An upcoming workshop to discuss was continued and will be scheduled in the near future.
CA Consumer Protection Act. The Attorney General is proposing regulations to further clarify the recently passed California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA). Deadline for comments is December 6, 2019. The CCPA provided consumers with the right to: Know what personal data is being collected; whether data is sold or disclosed and to whom; say no to the sale of personal data; access personal data; request a business delete any personal information collected. The CCPA applies to any California business that satisfies at least one of the following: 1) Has annual gross revenue in excess of $25 million; 2) Possesses the personal information of $50,000 or more consumers, households or devices; 3) earns more than half of its annual revenue from selling consumers personal information. See link for information. https://www.oag.ca.gov/privacy/ccpa