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FADA 50th Anniversary Convention

Topics:  Florida Automobile Dealers Association

FADA 50th Anniversary Convention

Florida Automotive Journal
December 1970

Florida Automobile Dealers AssociationArch Livingston, Director, Division of Motor Vehicles, Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, Tallahassee, Florida Florida Automobile Dealers AssociationWalter Mallory casts a parting glance on FADA Convention '70
When Body Shop Men Cut a Ribbon They Do It In a Big Way!
Rupert Caviness, President
Joe Blank, National Director
Marshall Catlin, Past President
Dexter McCaskill, Immediate Past President Florida Automobile Dealers AssociationWalter Mallory casts a parting glance on FADA Convention '70
When Body Shop Men Cut a Ribbon They Do It In a Big Way!
Rupert Caviness, President
Joe Blank, National Director
Marshall Catlin, Past President
Dexter McCaskill, Immediate Past President
Florida Automobile Dealers Association's (FADA) 50th Anniversary Convention Program began Sunday, November 15th, at the Diplomat Hotel & Country Club in Hollywood, Florida with a day of fishing, golf, tennis and swimming in between registration activities and several meetings.

Monday, following a buffet breakfast, the Convention Opening Business Session was held, starting at 9:00 with the President's Report. D. Dexter McCaskill stated that for FADA 1970 has been a "year of growth and accomplishment." Not only is their financial status sound, but so are their major programs for this year, such as Workmen's Compensation Program, the Quick Title Program, and FADA Services Guaranteed Warranty Program.

Since FADA is so concerned with state and national legislation which could effect the auto industry and the motoring public, all members of FADA were urged to get to know the views of their congressmen and to be sure and let their congressmen know the views of FADA. A legislative committee of FADA members holds local meetings throughout the state for the sole purpose of explaining what legislation pertinent to the auto industry has been passed and how that legislation can effect the industry.

McCaskill spoke briefly about several bills which will or are presently being mulled over by the government. The President made clear the association's stand on these bills, once again urging members to set up some lines of communication with legislators. Before announcing the slate drawn up by the nominating committee for the upcoming FADA election of officers and Board of Directors, Mr. McCaskill took a few moments to thank the Board and his staff for all the help he had received in the past year. (A prolonged illness kept the President from his duties and in the hospital for about three months.). The slate of officers is as follows:

President: Rupert N. Caviness
President Elect: Robert J. Miami
Secretary-Treasurer: Tom M. K Jr., Tallahassee

Following the President's Report, Rupert N. Caviness, FADA Secretary-Treasurer, gave the financial reports. Mr. Caviness stated that FADA this year accepted 44 new members and 8 associate members.

Arch Livingston, Director, Division of Motor Vehicles, Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, and a very busy man, apologized for the brevity of his talk, but explained that he was expected at a luncheon meeting in Tallahassee. Livingston chucked as he said that if he had to give his talk a title, it would be, "Your Business As I See It from My Business Standpoint." He began by sympathizing with all business men in the United States because of market ups and downs, strikes, and of course, tight money. But, he said that somehow the auto dealers don't seem to be suffering much from business ills; not when one takes into account the fact that this year 4,590,259 motor vehicles were registered in Tallahassee, which is an increase of 350,000 over those registered last year. Next year, Mr. Livingston anticipates a rise to five million registrants. Broken down, this year's figures average out to an increase in motor vehicle population of 888 registrants every morning.

Livingston said the number of D tags, plain tags, and W tags have remained the same in proportion to other vehicles on the road, but there is a reported 2% increase on WW tags.

Moving from tags to titles, Livingston said that, at one time, it took eight days to process a title sticker through the office in Tallahassee. Within the past two or three months, the computers were changed around, slowing down processing time considerably. As the situation worsened, Livingston fought harder to have something done about it and finally, his efforts have paid off. With certain needed changes in work schedules, the operation is now getting back into normal production time.

Livingston briefly mentioned the manufacturer-dealer bill stating that it is still necessary to make that piece of legislation compatible with dealers, manufacturers, government, and the public.

Before leaving the podium, Livingston thanked FADA for their many courtesies to him throughout the year.

Tom N. Kinnebrew, Chairman of the Legislative Committee, stated that this was an active year for the auto industry in legislature. He said that at various times during the year talks resulted in compromises with Ford, G.M., and Chrysler manufacturers. He expressed satisfaction with legal stands taken in such areas as the dealers licensing law, auto theft (on car lots), and abandoned motor vehicles (towed on to car lots at the request of police).

The final speaker was Frank E. McCarthy, Executive Vice President of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). Mr. McCarthy's talk concerned Washington's and Detroit's influence on automotive retailing. McCarthy began by bringing out the fact that the problems and issues before the FADA are almost identical to those of the NADA and that the national organization is only three years older than the Florida organization. Again the importance of communication between FADA and legislators was mentioned. It is of utmost importance to let these men know what dealers want and why. Above all, dealers must show they are interested.

The first piece of legislation McCarthy spoke of is the clean - air act proposed by Senator Muskie.  This act states that car manufacturers must further reduce auto emissions 90% by 1975.  When asked if the manufacturers would be granted an extension of time if they prove that they have earnestly tried to meet the bill's provisions, the answer was that the extension time would be only one year.  The next logical question, then, is what happens if a year just is not enough?  No one has answered that one yet.

Another bill which poses a potential threat not only to the auto industry but all industries alike, is a piece of legislation dealing with occupational health & safety.  There is a provision which in effect, would give the Secretary of Labor sole authority for setting standards of safety.  NADA would rather see a larger committee comprised of manufacturers, dealers, mechanics, and legislators working together on these standards.  Theoretically, if the bill were to be passed as is, the Secretary of Labor could walk into anyone's shop and, if he finds a safety hazard, order that shop to close.

The Small Business Administration, in 1959 places a 3 million dollar or less ceiling on the classification of small busines.  The people in the Administration now realize that figure is out of line and are currently raising the ceiling to 5 million dollars.

Finally, McCarthy turned to the workings of the Federal Trade Commission.  Originally organized to correct misrepresentation in advertising, their new proposals would effect new car pricing.  One proposal is that a car manufacturer or dealer must not show accessories to the public and still state the standard price in the same advertisement.  Other proposals mentioned were either vague or just plain needed working on to make them feesable.

In order to clear up any confusion on the part of dealers present at the meeting, McCarthy explained that in the vast majority of cases, manufacturers and dealers work very closely together, and he asked the gentlemen not to feel as though they are on opposite sides of the fence.

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