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

The Houston City Council will soon consider new auto repair industry regulations for the city amid complaints that some body shops are deceiving consumers.

The changes would be aimed at increasing transparency within the industry, said Lt. Wendy Bainbridge with the Houston Police Department, according to KHOU 11 News Houston.

The city is in the process of drafting an ordinance that would mainly require better record-keeping at body shops, cap repair work without consent at $100 and mandate a written estimate of any special fees.

Industry representatives, including the Houston Auto Body Association (HABA), applaud some of the proposed mandates but are quick to say others may end up bogging down reputable businesses, slowing their ability to serve customers.

Service King Collision Repair Centers recently opened a new facility in the uptown Houston area. The 32,000-square-foot shop’s offices are located on a redeveloped former restaurant site and the repair center is behind it.

Service King says the new facility has the ability to repair 450 to 500 vehicles per month and offers a concierge service, continuing education centers for insurance partners, an Enterprise Rent-A-Car location and offices for insurance adjusters.

“We are thrilled to be opening a location in the Galleria area,” said Chris Abraham, vice president of Service King’s Houston market. “This is a prime location for us and we were glad that we were able to use and redevelop an existing vacated building in the area. We really enjoy our customers and partners in the Houston market and we believe this is a great fit for Service King.”

Steve Feltner is the manager at the new facility, Service King’s tenth in the Houston area. Another location is set to open in July.

Founded 35 years ago, Service King has grown to 41 shops in Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio. For more information, go to www.serviceking.com.

Entergy Corporation announced it is working with Coulomb Technologies to fund and donate 16 electric vehicle charging stations at college campuses in and around Entergy’s four-state service area.

The first two Entergy-funded charging stations were unveiled during a special event at Louisiana State University as Entergy and LSU launched one of the state’s first major forays into the electric vehicle market.

The event featured Dr. Michael Martin, LSU Chancellor; Bill Mohl, president and chief executive officer, Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C.; and Allan G. Pulsipher, executive director, LSU Center for Energy Studies.

“Electric vehicles are gaining widespread attention and being embraced as an important technology solution for the nation’s energy future. We know that the infrastructure must be in place to support the evolution of the technology, and we hope Entergy’s donation of EV chargers to LSU will help start that process for the southern region,” said Mohl. “This program is part of our deeper commitment to support technologies that foster environmental sustainability and provide for clean, efficient and affordable power for today and tomorrow.”

The charging stations were donated to LSU through a $160,000 grant by Entergy’s Environmental Initiatives Fund. Entergy is currently working with other universities in Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas to donate additional electric vehicle charging stations throughout the region.

The nation’s largest association of insurer fraud investigators has contributed $10,000 to a memorial fund honoring two Louisiana investigators who were killed in the line of duty on June 7, according to Insurance Journal.

The board of directors of the International Association of Special Investigation Units authorized the donation to the fund created by the Louisiana Insurance Department in the wake of the murders of Rhett Jeansonne and Kim Sledge last month.

The insurance department investigators were shot by an agent they were seeking to interview in Ville Platte, La.

“They were members of IASIU and dedicated professionals. IASIU appreciates the support of the Louisiana insurance department over the years. The senseless murder of our fellow IASIU members is unimaginable,” IASIU president Dave Rioux, of Erie Insurance, wrote to Louisiana Commissioner Jim Donelon on behalf of the IASIU members.

The fund will be used to purchase and place a permanent memorial on the insurance department’s grounds in Baton Rouge. Any remaining money will go to the estates of Jeansonne and Sledge.

“Kim and Rhett were true Louisiana heroes who lost their lives protecting our citizens and we hope to memorialize their efforts in an appropriate manner. Know that the outpouring of support from our colleagues has been invaluable,” Donelon said to Insurance Journal.

The Houston Auto Body Association (HABA) held their monthly members meeting on June 28th at the UTI (Universal Technical Institute) in Houston at 7:00 pm.

Wednesday, 06 July 2011 15:20

CCAR Names LA Shop “GreenLink Shop”

The Coordinating Committee for Automotive Repair (CCAR) recognized a Slidell, LA, collision repair shop with its “GreenLink Shop” status on June 29.