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November 21, 2017 FacebookTwitterFlickrRSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
Inside this issue
Senators May Vote on Tax Reform Bill Next Week - Contact Your Senator to Protect Floor Plan Deductibility
Dealership Lobbyist Named NHTSA's Top Lawyer
NAFTA Nations Lock Horns on U.S. Auto Demands as Fifth Round Ends
Global EV Sales Jump 63% as China Demand Surges
Volvo Promises Uber Fleet of Self-Driving Taxis by 2019
Black Friday Shoppers Should Visit Car Lots, Not Just Malls
Gilchrist to Serve as Auto Dealer Groupís Vice Chairman
Los Angeles Auto Show Events Include NADA / J.D. Power Conference LA on Nov. 28
Top Stories
Senators May Vote on Tax Reform Bill Next Week - Contact Your Senator to Protect Floor Plan Deductibility


Action still needed: join more than 400 who have already contacted their Senators

Negotiations between lawmakers on tax reform and the continued deductibility of floor plan interest continue this week in Washington. The Senate released legislative text late last night that would limit the deductibility of business interest, including floor plan interest, to 30 percent of adjusted taxable income. As interest rates increase, this would result in dealers paying higher taxes even when a dealership does not show a profit. This is a tax increase for your business and could be especially devastating to cash flow, particularly for many of our smaller members, during an economic downturn.

Senators are still making changes to the tax reform bill. Dealers are urged to call their Republican Senators to ask them to add the House bill language that preserves floor plan deductibility. The Senate tax reform bill could be voted on as early as the week of November 27. Senate floor action is critical as there may not be opportunities to change the bill after the Senate vote. 

You can view a list of target lawmakers here and a one-pager on this topic here.

Although emails are helpful, it's important for lawmakers to hear from you directly via meetings, phone and social media as well. As many as 15 phone calls or social media messages from constituents can often be enough to get a lawmaker to pay attention on an issue:

For more information or to provide Senate feedback, contact Patrick Calpin, NADA Legislative Affairs, at 202.547.5500.
Source: NADA

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Dealership Lobbyist Named NHTSA's Top Lawyer

The White House has appointed Jonathan Morrison, a former lobbyist with ties to auto dealerships, as chief counsel of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, according to his LinkedIn page and two sources with close ties to the agency.

Morrison was president of Auto Advisory Services, which provides consulting services to dealerships on state and federal compliance issues, since March 2014 and a director of the California Automotive Business Coalition.

Prior to joining AAS, Morrison worked eight years as director of legal and regulatory affairs for the California New Car Dealers, where he lobbied state government, according to his biography on the CABC website.
Source: Automotive News

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NAFTA Nations Lock Horns on U.S. Auto Demands as Fifth Round Ends

Negotiators from the United States, Mexico and Canada square off on Tuesday for the last time in a fifth round of talks to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement, with stalemate brewing on a contentious proposal to ramp up regional content for autos.

Officials and lobbyists say Mexico and Canada will firmly push back against the U.S. demand to raise the minimum threshold for NAFTA autos to 85 percent from 62.5 percent, as well as insist that fully half the content is from the United States.

Tuesday will be the seventh day negotiators have met during this Mexico round, and officials hope to make announcements that can inject some momentum into a process that more pessimistic observers fear is running out of steam.
Source: Reuters

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Global EV Sales Jump 63% as China Demand Surges

Electric vehicles sales surged to a record in the third quarter, largely driven by strong demand in China.

Sales of EVs and plug-in hybrids exceeded 287,000 units in the three months ended in September, 63 percent higher than the same quarter a year ago and up 23 percent from the second quarter, according to a report released Tuesday by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

China accounted for more than half of global sales as its market for battery-powered cars doubled amid government efforts to curb pollution. Europe was the second-biggest market in the third quarter for the vehicles, with 24 percent of sales, followed by North America.
Source: Automotive News

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Volvo Promises Uber Fleet of Self-Driving Taxis by 2019

Volvo Cars said it has agreed to supply Uber Technologies Inc. with a fleet of 24,000 self-driving taxis beginning in 2019—one of the first and biggest commercial orders for such vehicles.

The deal between Volvo, owned by China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co., and Uber was disclosed Monday as a framework agreement without financial terms. Such an order, though, would account for about 4.5% of Volvo’s current total sales, based on 2016 figures, and is estimated to be worth more than $1 billion, a person familiar with the situation said.
Source: WSJ

Editor's note: Anders Gustafsson, Volvo Cars USA's new president and CEO and senior vice president for the Americas, is among the industry speakers and panel sessions scheduled at AutoConference LA -- hosted by NADA and J.D. Power -- on Tuesday, Nov. 28 ahead of press days at the Los Angeles Auto Show. For the complete agenda or to register, visit www.autoconferencela.com.

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Black Friday Shoppers Should Visit Car Lots, Not Just Malls

While many shoppers head for the malls on Black Friday, some will be heading to auto dealerships instead.

The four-day Thanksgiving weekend is one of those holidays — along with Memorial Day, Labor Day and the Fourth of July — when auto dealers typically sweeten deals to draw out buyers.

"Black Friday is certainly a great time to go car shopping," Jennifer Newman, editor-in-chief of Cars.com, said in a statement. This week, it could be even better than in past years. Here are the reasons.
Source: USA Today

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Gilchrist to Serve as Auto Dealer Groupís Vice Chairman

Charlie Gilchrist, President of Southwest Ford Auto Group, was recently elected to become 2018 National Automobile Dealers Association - (NADA) vice chairman. When Gilchrist received word of the selection, he called it an "honor to serve with such an outstanding board."

"The National Automobile Dealer's Association team is inspirational in their drive to protect, influence and improve each dealer and I am excited to serve as vice-chairman next year and chairman in 2019," Gilchrist said. "We are facing many challenges, but also we have many opportunities as franchised new car dealers in the United States. This is truly the greatest business in the world, and I am so excited to be a part of it."
Source: Star-Telegram

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AutoConference LA -- Nov. 28
Los Angeles Auto Show Events Include NADA / J.D. Power Conference LA on Nov. 28

Tom Doll, president and chief operating officer for Subaru of America, Anders Gustafsson, Volvo Cars USA’s new president and CEO and senior vice president for the Americas, and Jeremy Tucker, vice president of marketing communications and media for Nissan North America, are among the industry speakers at AutoConference LA on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017.

AutoConference LA, hosted by NADA and J.D. Power, will be held at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown, the tallest U.S. building west of Chicago. The half-day conference precedes media days at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Other speakers include Mark Scarpelli, NADA chairman, Finbarr O’Neill, CEO and president of J.D. Power, as well as a panel discussion the future of autonomous vehicles and an analysis on auto retailing in the California market.

The conference starts with a noon luncheon and ends with a networking reception on the 73rd floor of the hotel, which offers unparalleled views of the cityscape and skyline of downtown Los Angeles. For the complete agenda or to register, visit www.autoconferencela.com.
Source: NADA

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Quotable
"We are facing many challenges, but also we have many opportunities as franchised new car dealers in the United States. This is truly the greatest business in the world, and I am so excited to be a part of it."

    -- Charlie Gilchrist, President of Southwest Ford Auto Group and 2018 NADA vice chairman, Nov. 19

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