The Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Minnesota, an association of nearly 640 independently-owned mechanical and collision repair shops and industry suppliers, works to improve the state's automotive service industry and the success of its members' businesses.
In 2012, AASP-MN passed legislation to increase the damage disclosure threshold for salvage title from 70% to 80% to allow for more vehicles to be repaired and fewer to be totaled. Other issues addressed this past year include: sales tax on paint and materials, "Right to Repair," insurer steering, DRP contract provisions for parts procurement, and air quality permits.
"In addition, we've engaged with legislators, government officials and the insurance industry to educate and address issues of concern to the repair industry," said Judell Anderson, AASP-MN Executive Director.
Some of the education and training topics AASP-MN provided its members in 2012 included: converting telephone leads into sales; understanding P-Pages; retaining unhappy customers; GM drivability; managing multiple priorities, Audi & VW diagnostics; and optimizing performance on insurance scorecards.
During 2012, members who participated in the association's uniform program with AmeriPride received over $62,000 in rebates, and members who participated in the workers' compensation program with Meadowbrook Insurance received dividends totaling over $58,000. Members also received savings on credit card processing, technical support services and industrial supplies.
Collision repair and mechanical students were awarded $16,000 in scholarships. The association's radio and Internet campaign "Get to Know Your Neighborhood Auto Repair Pro" promoted the benefits of doing business with independently-owned shops. B.S. Sessions were held for collision repair members who used these networking events to have informal roundtable discussions about specific topics and to learn about new products and services, and well as receive updates on association initiatives.
For 2013, AASP-MN will renew its efforts to pass legislation to change the point of imposition of sales tax on auto repair paint and supplies. Further amendments to the salvage title statutes may also be addressed, particularly the definition of high-value vehicles. In addition, the association will host its annual meeting and convention April 11-12 at the Crowne Plaza Minneapolis West in Plymouth. For more information, see www.aaspmn.org.