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11/13: Nashville, TN Hearing - Call for Owners

Discussion in 'Southeast' started by bonnie, Nov 7, 2014.

  1. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    Tennessee Owners (and surrounding areas) - you're on deck! As we've seen in other states, owners showing up at public hearings make a difference.

    Next week, 11/13, there is a hearing coming up regarding Tesla's application to open a store in Brentwood (near Nashville). Tesla has been trying to get this license for nearly a year. Initially they were rejected, but then reapplied as a wholly-owned subsidiary licensed to operate in TN. The application is legally sound and there is some internal support, but the ultimate decision is up to the Commission. And no surprise to anyone here, the Commission is primarily made up of a committee of dealers.

    The purpose of the hearing is to discuss the application & either grant, deny or defer. Obviously 'grant' is the desired outcome. 'Defer' is almost as bad as 'deny', because it leaves Tesla in limbo.

    Who can make it? (I have a call into Tesla requesting the as-yet-unreleased chademo adapters, as loaners, but don't yet have an answer on that.) Please post below if you can attend. I know it's a bit of a short notice, but it really does make a difference when owners show up. Something about light of of day and public accountability :).

    It's a bit more difficult for people to pull their tricks when it's not just their buddies in the room ... not that that would happen here, of course.

    Logistics:
    Screen Shot 2014-11-07 at 9.39.39 AM.png
     
  2. raddoc001

    raddoc001 Member

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    Thanks. I plan to attend. I plan to be there at 9.30 AM. Please let me know, if I need to be there earlier.
     
  3. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    If I hear of any changes (doubtful there will be any), will post here. So glad you can make it!

    TMC, represent!
     
  4. TexasEV

    TexasEV Active Member

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    Bonnie posted the dealer affiliations of some of the congressional district Motor Vehicle Commission members in the other Nashville thread. Further internet research shows there's a reason for that. By law the commission has a majority of members who are dealers, appointed from a list supplied by the auto dealer association (Tenn. Code Ann. § 55-17-103 (2014):

    "There is created the Tennessee motor vehicle commission to be composed of seventeen (17) members including a chair. One (1) industry member shall be selected from each of the state's nine (9) congressional districts and the chair shall be selected from the state at large. Industry members may be selected and appointed by the governor from lists of qualified persons furnished by interested automotive groups including, but not limited to, the Tennessee Automotive Association. Two (2) members shall be affiliated with motor vehicle manufacturers licensed in Tennessee, to be selected from the state at large. Such manufacturer members may be selected and appointed by the governor from a list of qualified persons submitted by interested motor vehicle manufacturers licensed in Tennessee;"

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]"Such members shall each have demonstrated an interest in improving the retail motor vehicle industry by membership in a trade association that meets the requirements set forth in § 50-6-405(c)(1). Each member shall be a citizen of the United States, shall have been a resident of this state for at least five (5) years, and shall be a franchised motor vehicle dealer."[/FONT]

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]This is more than regulatory capture, the state actually gave its regulatory power over to the auto dealers association. [/FONT]
     
  5. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    Wow. Talk about letting the fox guard the hen house.
     
  6. Chipper

    Chipper Active Member

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    Thanks, Bonnie. I might be able to set aside some other plans and be there too. ChaDeMo would be VERY nice as I would need a top off to get back home to Chattanooga.
     
  7. bigdomer

    bigdomer Member

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    It says Tuesday the 13th. Obviously either the date or day is wrong. So, it is really Tuesday (the 11th) or really Thursday (the 13th)? I linked all the way to their calendar to no avail as it just shows the same document posted above.
     
  8. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    11/11 is Veteran's Day. It must be 11/13, but I'm double-checking.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I'm pushing on getting some freed up. There may not be many to free up, though ... no definitive answer yet.
     
  9. dhrivnak

    dhrivnak Active Member

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    #9 dhrivnak, Nov 8, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2014
    Thank you Bonnie. We will try and get the word out. In your opinion are letters and/or emails helpful? If so who do we send to all of the members? Or is it better to write to our state representative, senator and governor?

    Thank you
     
  10. bigdomer

    bigdomer Member

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    I will be there. Tough location for visible parking. Guess I will have to stop by the service center for a jacket or some other swag to properly represent.
     
  11. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    It's definitely Thursday, 11/13. The 11th is a recognized Tennessee state holiday, all government offices closed.

    - - - Updated - - -

    It's an administrative hearing, so if you can't go, a letter to the commission is better than nothing :). Not going to hurt! But I strongly encourage everyone that can make it in person to do so. That has the biggest impact.

    I'd personally send it to the chairman (Eddie Roberts), cc'd to the appropriate district member for the district where I live. (You can find the list of members at Motor Vehicle Commission - Members .)

    Address:
    STATE OF TENNESSEE
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND INSURANCE
    DIVISION OF REGULATORY BOARDS
    MOTOR VEHICLE COMMISSION
    5th Floor 500 JAMES ROBERTSON PARKWAY
    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE 37243-1153
     
  12. TexasEV

    TexasEV Active Member

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    Also from their web site contact info:
    Fax: 615-741-0651

    Ideas if you want to enclose something from neutral parties with your letter:
    The FTC position paper on auto sales by manufacturers:
    Who decides how consumers should shop? | Federal Trade Commission

    The FTC comments specifically on two states restricting direct sales:
    FTC Staff: Missouri and New Jersey Should Repeal Their Prohibitions on Direct-to-Consumer Auto Sales by Manufacturers | Federal Trade Commission

    Wall Street Journal editorial on recent Michigan decision and consumer choice:
    Rick Snyder Drives Off the Road - WSJ - WSJ
     
  13. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    Great news!

    If you need a ChaDeMo
    adapter to make the drive, please send me a PM with your name/shipping address/phone # (for the shipper). These are ON LOAN & will need to be returned, but I'll get them to the people who need them before Wednesday afternoon.
     
  14. Chipper

    Chipper Active Member

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    Thanks, Bonnie! PM sent.
     
  15. Commander

    Commander New Member

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    thank you Bonnie! Robert of knoxville gave me this info and i'll request one on his behalf so we can make the drive to Gnashville.
     
  16. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    On the list! So glad you're both going!
     
  17. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    I'm doubly-impressed that you're making the trip with a Leaf - really great to see EV owners support each other like this.

    ---------------

    It looks like there will be a good turnout, thanks to efforts by forum members. My hope is that the hearing is routine, that the commission members 'do the right thing', and there is no drama. And that outcome is far more likely when Tennessee constituents are sitting right there, witnessing the proceedings.

    You all rock!
     
  18. TNEVol

    TNEVol Member

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    I plan on attending. I can loan a CHAdeMO or a 40 amp charge just off I-40 at Ex 254. I spent a good portion of my life in and around TN state government. This is an agency stacked with dealers. The notice is inadequate under the state sunshine law and there is no assurance that there will be public comment. In my opinion this is designed to place the issue in the legislature in January where Tesla would stand little chance against local dealership/campaign donors. Our legislature has a super-majority of Republicans however it has a history of working with business to restrict competition. Still the most appealing argument may be government interference in a buying decision as well as the Commission's mandate to protect consumers (not dealers). Be prepared for the level playing field argument since it is in the Commissions Mission Statement. I expect the worst but understand that a plaintiff who wants to buy another Tesla may be necessary for standing so I will formally object. If there are a number of people there they may very well put it off and try to reschedule so the opposition tires out. I hope the Tennessean has a reporter there because it has a way of asserting consumer causes that can get people's attention.
     
  19. TexasEV

    TexasEV Active Member

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    Are y'all getting help from Glenn Reynolds, a University of Tennessee law professor who wrote a column citing the Tesla situation in Michigan as an example of what is wrong with American capitalism today?
    How we 'won' in Vietnam, but are losing at home: Column

    Reynolds, Glenn Harlan | College of Law

    Being a distinguished law professor in the state he might be someone the commission would listen to-- or if not he may be a good resource if you have to go to the legislature.
     
  20. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    So based on an exchange over on the TM forum, it looks like the Commission might try stalling any decision.

    Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 12.07.24 PM.png

    I can't imagine what possible reason they'd have for delaying. When I look at the job duties for the person who was corresponding (Leslie Hogue) here , it appears that person is capable of approving license applications. What does the Commission need to review?

    I truly hope the Commission is planning on doing the right thing & I'm worrying about nothing.

    - - - Updated - - -

    So glad you'll be there, along with all the others that are planning on attending. And I'm looking forward to hearing all the first-person reports. If anyone has a twitter account, let me know what it is -- I'll happily retweet. (Find me on twitter at bonnienorman)
     

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