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Senate panel affirms repeal of mandated auto-dealer hours

Senate panel affirms repeal of mandated auto-dealer hours

Dustin Hurst
January 19, 2016

The old adage goes: if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

It took legislators nearly a year and multiple hearings in both chambers, along with some agency action, before the Senate Transportation Committee affirmed the repeal of a regulation that could have shuttered Idaho’s small auto dealers.

On a unanimous vote Tuesday, the committee upheld the repeal of the rule, which originally required small auto dealers to keep their doors open at least 20 hours each week. The rule also forced dealers to maintain an unspecified amount of business hours during the workweek.

The Idaho Transportation Department’s oversight board repealed the bulk of the rule during a July 23 meeting.

State regulations still require some action from dealers. New regulatory language requires all dealers -- regardless of size -- to declare their business hours to ITD.

Dealers must notify the state if they change their business hours.

After originally approving the rule’s language in 2015, that same session House members reversed course and tried twice to kill the regulation. Both attempts failed.

Sen. Steve Vick, R-Dalton Gardens, praised the repeal during testimony Tuesday.

“This was something I was quite concerned about last session,” he said. “I think this is a huge improvement.”

The House Transportation and Defense Committee will take up the regulation in the next few days. If the proposal wins that panel’s approval, full repeal of mandated hours will take effect immediately after the 2016 session concludes.

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