On the critical issue of what is considered an “essential” business, ARA wants to be sure that automotive recyclers understand the evolving state-by-state nature of this determination. As earlier reported, states and in some instance’s localities, are designating which businesses can stay open in case of a “stay at home” or business shutdown mandate.
AT THIS POINT IN TIME, the following states have provided specific exemptions for our industry:
Further, the also previously reported Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) “Memorandum on Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response” lists GUIDANCE FOR STATES to make that determination. While “automaker repair and maintenance facilities” and “employees who repair and maintain vehicles” are covered, they are only included in a “recommended set” for states to consider.
Please continue to check your local print, social and broadcast media to keep track of your state and local closures and exemptions. If you have any concerns or questions please do not hesitate to reach out to ARA.
A third economic stimulus and relief package in response to COVID-19 has stalled in the U.S. Senate. On Sunday night Democrats pushed back against a multi-layered $1.6 trillion bill that includes financial assistance for corporations as well as enhancements to employment insurance and worker protection provisions. Senate Democrats say that it does not offer enough worker assistance and has too much corporate aide. House Speaker Pelosi weighed in against the Republican and Administration’s plan and is putting together an alternative. Timing is critical and negotiations continue around the clock. ARA is researching the details and once this package is finalized, ARA will update if there are any changes to key provisions such as family and medical leave and other employee measures.
Some automakers are closer to manufacturing medical equipment. General Motors entered into a partnership with Ventec Life Systems to begin making ventilators. According to President Trump, Ford and Tesla have been "given the go ahead to make ventilators and other metal products, FAST!"
The question about the availability of OEM parts during the shutdown of automakers’ manufacturing facilities is still up in the air and could change rapidly as the pandemic further unfolds. Multiple OEM statements have stated that parts distribution has continued but few details have emerged at this point in time.
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