After all the hard work of developing innovative new performance products, how do you legally get them into the market?
Government Affairs News
Deteriorating conditions and wet weather at the Bonneville Salt Flats (BSF) forced the Southern California Timing Association/Bonneville Nationals Inc. to cancel Speed Week. The event organizers were unable to identify more than 2¼ miles of salt suitable for a safe course. Speed Week began in 1949 and is the largest annual racing event held at the BSF, with hundreds of teams racing every type of vehicle, from hot rods, roadsters and belly tankers to motorcycles, lakesters and streamliners. The event was also cancelled in 2014 due to rain, which marked the first cancellation since the ’90s.
For many automotive specialty-equipment manufacturers, emissions certification is an essential step in developing and bringing new performance or engine-related products to market. In fact, emissions compliance is a legal requirement. It is illegal under both California and federal law to sell products that could impact emissions. However, parts makers can comply with these laws by proving that their products do not increase emissions and have been certified through the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Executive Order (E.O.) process. While this can seem expensive and confusing, especially to small manufacturers and industry newcomers, the SEMA Garage’s cutting-edge Emissions Compliance Center is here to help make the process easy and affordable.
SEMA members have a unique opportunity to schedule a free one-on-one meeting with an expert on intellectual property rights (patent, trademarks, copyrights), tax credits or antitrust laws.
In October 2015, the major credit card companies will shift liability for fraud onto merchants that do not make the switch from payment terminals that read magnetic strips to terminals equipped with electronic chip-reading technology.
Legislation to require manufacturers of designated consumer goods, including automotive products, to post ingredients on the product label and online on the manufacturer’s website died when the legislature adjourned for the year.
The Save the Salt Coalition and Utah Alliance met with a variety of stakeholder groups on September 14 at the Bonneville Salt Flats (BSF) in Utah to discuss potential solutions for restoring the historic racing venue.
The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to allow manufacturers to meet warranty and labeling requirements for consumer products by providing warranty information online.
Protecting the intellectual property rights (IPR) of its members is a top SEMA priority.
Governor Brown signed into law legislation amending how California enforces “Made in U.S.A.” labels.
U.S. Representatives Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) and Gene Green (D-TX) introduced bipartisan legislation that would enable low-volume car manufacturers to produce turn-key replica vehicles for customers nationwide. Called the Low Volume Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Act of 2015 (H.R. 2675), the SEMA-supported bill would allow companies to construct up to 500 “replicas” per year. Those are cars that resemble another production vehicle manufactured at least 25 years ago.
Legislation to amend the California law governing “Made in U.S.A.” labeling has been passed by the state legislature and sent to Governor Brown for his signature and enactment into law.
Responding to comments submitted by SEMA to a proposed motor-vehicle equipment rule, the Washington State Patrol opted to retain the current maximum bumper height for passenger vehicles and the minimum height requirement for windshields.
President Obama signed into law a bill to continue current federal highway spending through the end of October. It marks the 34th short-term extension since 2009.
SEMA’s Political Action Committee (SEMA PAC) helps you keep pace by supporting the Congressional car guys and gals who have our industry’s back.
SEMA has sought to protect motorized recreation on public lands for decades—with good reason. SEMA’s mission is to protect enthusiasts from unreasonable government actions that threaten their rides, whether on the highway or backcountry trails. It’s also harder to market off-road products when there are fewer places to enjoy them.
SEMA members manufacture, distribute and retail parts and accessories for use on passenger cars, trucks, recreational and special-interest collector vehicles of all kinds. These products include performance, functional, restoration and styling-enhancement equipment of various designs and performance specifications. However, many of these parts are required to meet a variety of state and federal laws and regulations. Complying with these requirements is no easy task, but it can be made easier with a simple understanding of which parts are regulated, who regulates them and how manufacturers can innovate new products for automobiles within the bounds of the law. The following summarizes regulatory oversight basics.
The fight against unfair automotive laws has been spearheaded by the SEMA Action Network (SAN) for nearly two decades. Citizen advocates—individuals from the industry and hobby alike—help shape the course of automotive-related proposals before they become law. While keeping its membership posted on legislative trends throughout the United States and Canada, the SAN offers easy-to-follow guidance on influencing bills in one’s jurisdiction. Urgent in nature, the SAN’s Legislative Action Alert e-mail messages immediately call constituents to speak out in a unified way about legislation making its way through the legislatures. This potent tool has a proven record of successfully swaying lawmakers on high-impact issues.
While it’s too soon to tell who the next commander in chief will be, the field of contenders has begun to take shape. The candidates feature some very familiar names as well as some newcomers who have already made their marks. Who will emerge the victor? Let’s examine the players.
Law and Order is an update of some of the most recent federal and state legislative and regulatory issues that could potentially impact the automotive specialty-equipment industry. These include issues affecting small-business owners and their employees.
In its daily efforts to promote and protect the auto hobby, SEMA continues to partner with state lawmakers from across the country through the State Automotive Enthusiast Leadership Caucus. Celebrating its tenth anniversary, the caucus is a bipartisan group of state lawmakers whose common thread is a love and appreciation for automobiles.
For SEMA-member companies putting out great products these days, the challenge of illegal unauthorized copies is almost unavoidable. While some companies turn to the courts, federal agencies and law enforcement to confront counterfeiters, these avenues are frequently too expensive, ineffective or both. With the pervasive culture of counterfeiting in today’s global marketplace, SEMA members may be best served by also pursuing creative solutions that focus on branding, consumer awareness and unique packaging.
The efforts and outcomes secured by SEMA’s government affairs office in Washington, D.C., are among the association’s most highly rated benefits, according to our annual member satisfaction survey. While the D.C. team is a key factor, success is a function of each of you taking part and putting your strength into the effort—helping us make a deep impact on the policy discussions and decisions that are critical to the future of our industry.
Mark your calendars! With Congress in full swing, it’s not too early to make plans to attend the 2016 Washington Rally (May 10–12). The May gathering will mark the 11th time SEMA members have assembled in our nation’s capital to advocate on behalf of the automotive specialty-equipment industry. A biennial tradition, the Washington Rally has raised SEMA’s profile within the halls of Congress and is an integral part of the association’s advocacy efforts.
Legislation to remove the requirement that gasoline offered for sale in the state contain a percentage of ethanol was approved on a 23–3 vote by the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee.