'Right to Repair' Compromise Reached in Legislature, Bill on Patrick's Desk

Bill could nullify the need for the issue to be on the ballot this fall.

A bill sent to the governor's desk this week could take one of the off the ballot this November. 

On Tuesday, the last day of the Legislative session, the two sides in the "Right to Repair" debate reached an agreement that could make the fall vote unnecessary.

According to the bill, automakers would be required make available to independent mechanics all repair codes and other diagnostic information but have time to satisfy a mandate that all new cars sold in Massachusetts include an onboard diagnostic and repair information system that can be accessed from a laptop computer, according to the Boston Herald

Thursday the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers Global Automakers sent Gov. Deval Patrick a letter urging him to sign the compromise bill: 

Your approval will ensure an acceptable agreement that will safeguard all stakeholders, including consumers throughout the Commonwealth.  It will preserve choice for Massachusetts vehicle owners, protect manufacturers’ intellectual property, preserve the integrity of the role of the dealer in the repair process, and continue innovation in motor vehicle diagnostics.  It also protects Massachusetts small independent repair businesses and community dealers. 

With your signature into law, our organizations are committed to working together to comprehensively inform voters that Question #1 on the November ballot is unnecessary.  

Question #1 on the fall's ballot asks voters to require automakers to provide the information by 2015: 

An Act to Protect Motor Vehicle Owners and Small Businesses in Repairing Motor Vehicles: This initiative would require all car manufacturers to provide – on an equitable fair-market value subscription basis – all diagnostic and repair information for model years beginning in 2015 to owners or an owner’s designated in-state independent repair facility (not affiliated with a manufacturer or its authorized dealers). The law would also make available for purchase information for model years 2002 through 2014.



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