A lot of hard work could go down the drain in Sacramento because the California Senate Appropriations Committee has placed a bill that deals with resolving collision repair disputes between insurance companies and their customers, SB 1492, in the "suspense file." Action on this bill is suspended while the fiscal impact of this and other new legislation is determined. Hearings are currently being held to decide which bills will be released from the suspense file. 

Effective May 17, the Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) adopted a new regulation that will add flexibility to the process under which additional repairs may be authorized. The new regulation [Title 16 CCR3353(f)] permits the customer to designate another person to authorize additional parts and labor written estimated price. 

Darrell Amberson, AAM, Lehman's Garage, Bloomington, Minnesota, has been re-elected as Collision Division director of the Automotive Service Association (ASA). As such, Amberson serves on ASA's board of directors and chairs the ASA Collision Division Operations Committee. The position of Collision Division director is a two-year term. Jerry Burns, AAM, Automotive Impressions Inc., Rio Rancho, N.M., has been chosen to serve assistant division director. 

Allstate and Audatex, a Solera Company, (formerly ADP Claims Services Group) have entered an agreement for Audatex to provide mobile estimating tools and valuation services to Allstate. Under the agreement, Audatex will continue to provide Allstate's auto adjusters with PenPro® software and Autosource® valuation services. 

Former NFL quarterback and Hall of Fame member Troy Aikman will be the NACE 2006 keynote speaker. DuPont Performance Coatings is the sponsor of the Aikman ap-pearance on Thursday morning, November 2 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. 

Hiring a new employee can be tricky business. One West Coast shop owner found that out recently when within two days he suddenly found himself down three technicians. Before he could even get a 'help wanted' ad place, a man came in looking for work. 

Here's your assignment: Pretend you have 45 seconds to talk about your business in front of a group of people you'd love to have as customers. Could you tell them something that's unique about your business, something that no other shop in your area could or is likely to tell them? 

Friday, 30 June 2006 17:00

Central Texas hailstorms were costly

The hailstorms that pounded central Texas this spring were costly. The final tally for insured losses reached $160 million. The city of San Marcos bore the brunt of the storm. Hundreds of homes and businesses were damaged as well hundreds of new and used cars, some of them totaled. 

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has instituted an asset freeze and temporary restraining order against the owner of a Houston auto auction, seeking an accounting for millions of dollars in fees fraudulently assessed against those who participated in auctions to purchase vehicles. 

With the opening of the first Concierge Program service center in California, located in San Diego, Progressive Insurance has created a furor over what type of collision repair activities require registration with the Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) and reopened the question of whether an insurer can stand in the shoes of its insured in negotiating and authorizing collision repairs.