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  • Clean Air Act Amendment

    by Representative Robert E. Latta

    Posted on 2014-01-08

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    LATTA. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and pass the bill (H.R. 724) to amend the Clean Air Act to remove the requirement for dealer certification of new light-duty motor vehicles.

    The Clerk read the title of the bill.

    The text of the bill is as follows: H.R. 724 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. REMOVAL OF REQUIREMENT FOR DEALER CERTIFICATION OF NEW LIGHT-DUTY MOTOR VEHICLES.

    Section 207(h) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7541(h)) is amended-- (1) by striking paragraph (1); and (2) by redesignating paragraphs (2) and (3) as paragraphs (1) and (2), respectively.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from Ohio (Mr. Latta) and the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Peters) each will control 20 minutes.

    The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Ohio.

    General Leave Mr. LATTA. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members may have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous materials into the Record on the bill.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from Ohio? There was no objection.

    Mr. LATTA. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

    Mr. Speaker, I am proud to be the lead sponsor of H.R. 724, along with my colleague, Congressman Gary Peters of Michigan. This bipartisan bill, which has 106 cosponsors, repeals an obsolete regulatory requirement that no longer [[Page H35]] makes sense. This legislation is fully supported by the auto industry, and I have a letter that I would like to submit for the Record from the five leading automotive trade associations, including the National Automobile Dealers Association, highlighting their support.

    Since 1981, automobile dealers who deliver a new vehicle for sale have been required to provide a certificate to the purchaser, indicating the vehicle conforms to Clean Air Act emissions requirements. However, modern technology and standard vehicle warranties have rendered this paperwork requirement unnecessary and redundant for a number of reasons.

    First, every new vehicle must comply with Clean Air Act requirements before it can enter the stream of commerce. Second, information certifying a vehicle is Clean Air Act compliant can already be found in a number of other locations, including under the hood of a vehicle, in a vehicle's manual, or on the EPA's Web site. And, finally, many new sale warranties range from tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of miles or a number of years which far exceed the protections provided for in the regulatory requirement.

    During recent years, we have seen an unprecedented amount of Federal regulation proposed and enacted. This bureaucratic creep not only threatens the scope of entrepreneurial freedom but also comes at a heavy cost which, by some estimations, is approximately $1.7 trillion annually. In my district, when I am out visiting with the small businesses community and hardworking American taxpayers, the number one concern I hear about is the burdensome regulations and the need to pare back Federal Government interference.

    H.R. 724 is simple, direct, and sends a clear message that small business owners, and specifically auto dealers, should not be burdened with redundant regulatory requirements. This legislation will make the car-buying process a little simpler and let auto dealers spend less time complying with obsolete regulatory requirements and more time developing their businesses, investing in local communities, and creating jobs.

    I look forward to continuing to find ways that reduce unnecessary red tape on the small business community. As H.R. 724 represents, this is not only a policy goal both sides of the aisle can agree on, but it is a policy goal that can actually get done. I urge support from my colleagues.

    Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

    American International Automobile Dealers, NADA, NAMAD, Auto Alliance, and Global Automakers, January 7, 2014.

    Dear Representative: We, the undersigned automotive trade associations, are writing regarding our strong support for H.R. 724, a bipartisan bill that would repeal an outdated paperwork mandate on franchised automobile dealers requiring dealer certification of a new vehicle's emission system. This legislation was introduced on February 14, 2013 by Reps. Bob Latta (R-OH) and Gary Peters (D-MI) and currently has 105 bipartisan cosponsors. H.R. 724 was reported out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee on December 11, 2013 by voice vote. This bill is scheduled to be considered by the House of Representatives on January 8, 2014.

    For over 30 years, automobile dealers who sell a new vehicle have been required to provide customers with a certificate which states that the vehicle conforms to Clean Air Act (CAA) emissions requirements. However, subsequently passed laws and dealer contractual obligations have rendered this statutory mandate redundant and obsolete.

    Currently, every new vehicle must comply with CAA requirements before entering the stream of commerce, making it unnecessary for a dealer to also provide a customer with written notification that the vehicle is CAA compliant. Next, information can be found under the hood of the vehicle certifying that the vehicle is CAA compliant, making another form given by the dealer to the customer duplicative. Finally, other information contained in the form is either no longer relevant or can be found in the owner's manual and supplements provided by the manufacturer.

    H.R. 724 is narrowly drafted to eliminate this one statutory mandate only. The bill does not amend or impact other provisions of the Clean Air Act.

    This legislation is an excellent example of Congress working on a bipartisan basis to repeal an outdated law that no longer benefits the public. We urge you to vote ``Yes'' on H.R. 724 to end this unnecessary requirement. Thank you for your consideration.

    Sincerely, Peter K. Welch, President, National Automobile Dealers Association.

    Mitch Bainwol, President and CEO, Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.

    Damon Lester, President, National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers.

    Cody Lusk, President, American International Automobile Dealers Association.

    Michael J. Stanton, President and CEO, Association of Global Automakers, Inc.

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