WASHINGTON (May 20, 2003) — A coalition of automotive aftermarket associations, including the Tire Industry Association and the Specialty Equipment Market Association, have vowed to fight a provision in the Bush administration's transportation funding reauthorization bill that would allow federal funding of state vehicle scrappage programs.
Currently, the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program is forbidden to give money to states to fund the scrappage of pre-1980s vehicles as a pollution control measure, but the Bush administration bill would remove that prohibition.
“Scrappage will not achieve its intended goal of improving air quality, but it will damage automotive aftermarket businesses and eliminate American jobs,” the associations said in a group press release dated May 15. Classic cars and replacement parts are lost forever in scrappage programs, the groups said, and lower-income people usually can't afford to replace their scrapped vehicles with cleaner-running cars.
“We don't know who in the administration likes this,” said Becky MacDicken, TIA director of government affairs. “But this provision seems to pop up every few years, and so far we've never had any trouble fighting it off.”