Tennessee Auto Care Companies Host Roundtable with Senator
July 24, 2019—Executives from nine auto care industry companies met with United States Senator Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., on July 19, in Memphis for a roundtable discussion facilitated by the Auto Care Association on the industry’s most pressing public policy priorities.
The roundtable began with an overview of the auto care industry’s presence in Tennessee with nearly 78,000 jobs and $20 billion in economic impact. Next, the conversation turned toward trade policy—an important issue for an industry that imports and exports billions of dollars’ worth of parts and components. Participants shared how tariffs and uncertainty in the trade environment have increased the cost of repairs for vehicle owners and left businesses without the certainty they need to make long-term investments.
The group also discussed equal access to wirelessly transmitted vehicle data and how the businesses in the room would be negatively affected should both consumers and independent repair shops be denied cyber-secure and direct access to important diagnostic and driver data.
“It is important that we in the automotive aftermarket industry continue to inform and engage elected officials on critical issues impacting the industry and more importantly, our customers,” said Mark Finestone, chairman, board of directors, Auto Care Association. “Specifically, regarding vehicle-generated data or telematics, our customers have made it clear that they should control and have access to this information, and we will continue to advocate in support of our customers, the motoring public.”