SEMA Notes Victory in Defeat
of Vehicle Scrappage Legislation
WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 14, 2002) – Car hobbyists and related businesses scored a major victory yesterday when the U.S. Senate voted to approve an amendment sponsored by Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-CO) to remove old car scrappage language from the “Energy Policy Act of 2002.”
The vehicle scrappage provision (Section 822 of S. 517) would have created a new U.S. Department of Energy bureaucracy to federally fund state-run scrappage programs for vehicles over 15 years old. Under the program, owners who turned in vehicles for crushing would have received a cash payment and a credit toward purchasing a newer vehicle, in an ostensible attempt to improve the overall fuel economy of the country’s vehicle fleet. The scrappage provision would have denied automotive aftermarket businesses the availability of older cars necessary to market products and services. It also threatened vehicle enthusiasts nationwide with the loss of valuable parts and parts-cars for repair, restoration, and customization projects.
“SEMA is very indebted to the efforts of Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell, co-chair of the Congressional Automotive Performance and Motorsports Caucus, for introducing the amendment to eliminate scrappage,” said SEMA Director of Public Affairs Brian Caudill. “Without his, and principal co-sponsor Sen. Sam Brownback’s (R-KS), exceptional effort and support, this victory would have been impossible. We are very lucky to have fellow automotive enthusiasts in the Senate.”
“Also, this victory would not have been possible without the literally thousands of phone calls, faxes, e-mails and letters to U.S. Senators that SEMA member businesses and SEMA Action Network vehicle clubs and individual enthusiasts were able to muster,” said Caudill. “SEMA sincerely thanks everyone for their dedication, hard work, and willingness to protect the vehicle hobby. This experience is a testament to the powerful connection between the specialty aftermarket automotive industry and the American vehicle hobbyist community.”
SEMA, the Specialty Equipment Market Association, represents the $25 billion specialty automotive industry. The trade association has more than 5,000 member companies. It is the authoritative source of research data, trends and market growth information for automakers and the specialty auto products industry. The industry provides appearance, performance, comfort, convenience and technology products for passenger cars, minivans, trucks, SUVs and recreational vehicles. For more information, contact SEMA at 1575 S. Valley Vista Dr., Diamond Bar, Calif., 91765-3914; call 909/396-0289; or visit www.sema.org or www.enjoythedrive.com.
The SEMA Action Network (SAN) is a nationwide partnership of vehicle clubs, members of the specialty auto parts industry and individuals who want to protect their hobby. SAN is dedicated to help stamp out legislative threats to the automotive hobby and pass favorable laws. For more information, contact Brian Caudill at 202/783-6007 or visit www.enjoythedrive.com/san.