House Committee Hears 'Dealer's Bill Of Rights'

Apr 16, 2013

A bill that pits dealers against manufacturers drew a crowd to its House hearing today.

Auto dealers and lobbyists gather to give testimony before the House Commerce Committee.
Credit Emily Corwin / NHPR

  Car and heavy equipment dealers say state franchise laws need an update to protect them from what they call “excessive” manufacturer demands.   

Manufacturers say this would amount to state government micromanaging their private business contracts.

Nashua Chamber of Commerce president Chris Williams – who supports the bill -- told House Commerce Committee that ordinarily, this is an area where government ought to tread lightly. 

However, what makes it very easy for us to sit here today is the fact that there are many locally family owned NH companies, all of them hiring significant numbers of workers and giving back to their own community.

The bill, which backers call the “dealer’s bill of rights,” easily passed the state Senate last month.  New Hampshire is one of 27 states considering updates to state franchise laws.