Southwestern News

1HomePageMap small sw 0816Local news stories affecting the auto body industry in Arizona, Utah, Arkansas, ColoradoTexas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Louisiana

Made in America is more than just a patriotic slogan. It is an opportunity to spotlight the innovation U.S. manufacturers bring to the table. While conventional paint booth companies are offering retrofitting and add-ons to adapt existing booths for spraying waterborne paint, NorAM Inc. built a booth from the ground up that did not need any changes to embrace new paint technology. And every single part is made in the USA.

The last avenue for relief from the strictures of Texas H.B. 1131 has been blocked off for Allstate Insurance Company as the U.S. Supreme Court turned down the company’s petition for writ of certiorari, refusing to hear further appeals. After nearly five years of fighting, it appears the collision industry and the state officials who supported them by banning tied repair shops in the state have prevailed. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans dismissed Allstate’s  request, saying the law did not violate the Constitution.

Todd Fox, who abandoned his 18 Fox Collision Repair shops in October 2007, filed for bankruptcy last month, claiming more than $7 million in debts but $4 million in assets. Fox appeared as required by law at a U.S. Trustee's office with bankruptcy attorney, Ed Nazar. Fox outlined plans to sell the company's equipment, real estate and vehicles to pay a list of creditors reported to be 100 pages long.         

In the Zone

Pat and Wayne Felder wanted to expand their small business, but thought using GO Zone assistance might involve too much time and federal red tape or require the assistance of a lawyer. The opportunity might have slipped away had Pat Felder not decided to look into it further. She got a summary explanation on the hurricane assistance, which convinced her to consult their accountant. He advised they use its 50% bonus depreciation incentive to build their much-desired warehouse, to do it immediately and leave the paperwork to him.

Santa Fe Chevrolet, in the Santa Fe, New Mexico, Auto Park, has taken a step to protect the environment by changing its paint system. The company’s system is now water-based rather than solvent-based.

Allstate Insurance Company has filed an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court regarding the Texas statute prohibiting insurance companies from owning collision repair shops. Just as children go from parent to parent to get the answer they want, Allstate has refused to accept lower court decisions, and, in a last ditch effort to own repair shops in Texas (under the Sterling banner), has asked the Supreme Court to review the previous decisions. 

Speeding is the number one reason why police ticket Texas teens during the holiday season. According to an Allstate Insurance Company holiday teen driving survey of more than 35 police departments across the Lone Star State, even seemingly common infractions can be deadly.

 

Two and one half years after Hurricane Katrina tried to wipe New Orleans off the face of the planet – the valiant efforts of the brave and determined are rebuilding this beautiful and historic landmark city – so unique in all the world.

 

Monday, 31 December 2007 17:00

Big Easy Repair Shops Triumph Over Katrina

Revisiting the New Orleans area collision industry professionals who were affected by Hurricane Katrina over two years ago brings good news and bad news. The good news – the shops that are back in business are staffed and busy with repairs. The bad news – not nearly enough progress has been made on the infrastructure of the city and surrounding areas discouraging residents from returning and new workers from relocating to New Orleans.

Friday, 30 November 2007 17:00

Foti Sticks Up For Katrina Victims

The office of Attorney General Charles C. Foti, Jr. has filed suit against Allstate Insurance Company, Lafayette Insurance Company, Xactware, Inc., Marshall & Swift/Boeckh, LLC, Insurance Services Office, Inc., State Farm Fire and Casualty Company, USAA Casualty Insurance Company, Farmers Insurance Exchange, Standard Fire Insurance Company and McKinsey & Company for alleged violations of the Louisiana Monopolies Act.