April 20, 2010 Meeting Report

To download a pdf version of the meeting report, click here (please note, presentations and reports that are incorporated into this report by reference must be downloaded separately).


National Automotive Service Task Force Meeting
April 20, 2010
Napa, California
Meeting Report
On April 20, 2010, the National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF) held its regular semi-annual meeting in conjunction with ETI’s ToolTech in Napa, California.
Charlie Gorman, NASTF Chair, ran the meeting. He welcomed everyone to the meeting, reminded attendees of anti-trust requirements, and reviewed the agenda for the meeting. He then addressed the group regarding the non-political nature of NASTF, and pointed out that regardless of what happens with Right to Repair legislation, NASTF is needed. He called upon the those both for and against R2R to put a little of their resources into NASTF so that even better things can be accomplished, and suggested that all work together toward our common goals irrespective of legislation.
Director’s Comments
Mary Hutchinson, NASTF Director, first thanked ETI and Mr. Gorman for hosting the NASTF meetings. She then shared statistics on information requests filed in 2009: there were a total of 57 requests filed; 12 of these were invalid requests, so there were 45 valid requests. Of these, the highest number involved issues with website navigation or administration (14) and the second highest number involved reprogramming issues (10). Other categories had far fewer or no requests. Ms. Hutchinson then requested that everyone continue to make suggestions for improvements to the NASTF website to ensure that it is as useful as possible to all. She also pointed out that anyone who wishes is welcome to participate with the NASTF committees, and encouraged everyone to sign up, either through the website or by sending in an e-mail requesting to be added to the committee.
Committee Briefs
Service Information Committee:  Steve Douglas, co-chair of the Service Information Committee, reported that the committee has been holding regular conference calls. He stated that the conference calls are very well-attended by manufacturer representatives, and encouraged more shop owners and technicians to participate, as it is a good forum in which to bring up issues that may exist. Mr. Douglas also briefly discussed the reprogramming section of the NASTF website.
Communications Committee: John Cabaniss, co-chair of the Communications Committee, reported that the committee meets quarterly, and also encouraged everyone to participate. He reminded the group of the committee charge, and itemized some of the types of activities undertaken by the committee: 1) communicate/distribute information; 2) solicit information; 3) request help from others in distributing information; 4) look for ways to improve the NASTF website; and 5) provide the NASTF e-Newsletter. Mr. Cabaniss pointed out that those who have an interest in doing so are welcome to link to articles in the e-newsletter if it is appropriate content to distribute with their own versions of newsletters. He also stated that the committee is looking to distribute the e-newsletter to all state and local associations and groups, which may, in turn, forward it on to all their members.
In response to an audience question, Mr. Gorman updated the group on CASIS in Canada, indicating that they are currently working primarily on a solution for an SDRM-type system. He stated that they are trying to make sure as much as possible that OEs can use their current systems.
A suggestion was made that NASTF work with the OEs to encourage them to educate their parts people on what the tool-buying process is for independents. It was also suggested that each OE have a specific tool page that is directly linked from the NASTF site.
Equipment and Tools Committee: Mr. Gorman introduced Greg Potter, one of two new co-chairs for the Equipment and Tools Committee. Mr. Potter made a presentation to the group, reviewing the mission statement and discussing work that will be taking place. Mr. Potter stated that the formats that the OEs provide information in do not necessarily translate well for tool manufacturers. He also pointed out that tool manufacturers have to decide what parts of the information they receive to implement in their tool, and pointed out that they may choose not to include everything due to costs involved. Mr. Potter stated that the committee will put together a small group of people to determine a better way of doing the tool matrices, preferably to figure out what is missing rather than what is there. He also said that currently information requests regarding tools are generally still being brought through ETI, but that NASTF is where the information should be reported.
Vehicle Security Committee: Mark Saxonberg, co-chair of the Vehicle Security Committee, reported that the committee met that morning and discussed a number of items. He reported that Mercedes has received approval to begin using SDRM for sales of Theft Related Parts. They plan a pilot of the project in the third quarter of this year, and if successful, will expand to additional parts shortly thereafter. Mr. Saxonberg discussed a new website through which consumers will be able to find vehicle security professionals that are part of the SDRM registry. He stated that use of SDRM includes about 500 primary LSID holders, 375 of which are locksmiths, and 125 are automotive facilities. Registry participation and transaction volume continue to increase. Mr. Saxonberg also reported that the NICB (National Insurance Crime Bureau) is pleased with the registry and SDRM, stating that it is meeting its original promise of providing access without compromising security. There have been approximately 1.7 million transactions logged through SDRM; of these, only 51 have “flashed”, and the majority were resolved that the SDRM transaction had nothing to do with what happened. There is one investigation that is still ongoing, and it involves a major theft ring. Mr. Saxonberg next reviewed a couple of policy issues that have been or are being addressed. First, the procedure for approving a subordinate LSID has changed, with the new procedure expected to enhance the level of security. Primary LSID holders much now submit to ALOA proof that the subordinate is an employee, and is appropriately licensed. Also, all subordinates can only be entered into the system by ALOA rather than by the primary LSID-holder. In addition, the committee is reviewing the locksmith licensing requirement, and will have a recommendation for the NASTF Board for the October meeting.
Service Information Agreement Update
Mary Hutchinson reported that there remain three primary manufacturers that have not yet signed the NASTF Automotive Service Information Standards Agreement: BMW, Chrysler, and GM. Bob Stewart, GM representative, explained that although GM is committed to providing access to information and strongly supports the NASTF process, they have an issue with the binding arbitration clause contained in the agreement, and this is the reason they have not signed. Ms. Hutchinson agreed that GM has been a strong participant, and pointed out that the others, too, are supportive of the NASTF process. She stated that NASTF is still working toward them signing the agreement. A question was asked from the audience regarding the status of Jaguar/Land Rover, and Ms. Hutchinson reported that they have now signed the agreement.
Heavy Duty Truck Update/Discussion
Tony Molla, NASTF Board member, introduced Lew Flowers of TMC. Mr. Flowers indicated that there is interest in the topic of access to information, and a survey of fleets indicated that many did feel this subject would impact their business. TMC developed a task force, which first met in January 2010. Mr. Flowers stated that he was at the NASTF meeting to help determine where to go from here and what synergies the task force and NASTF have. A member of the audience asked if there is resistance on the part of the heavy duty manufacturers. Mr. Gorman responded that there is, as nobody likes to be regulated. He stated that on the light duty side, the OEs were told that all we wanted them to do was provide non-emission related information in addition to the emissions related information. Mr. Gorman said that the same thing would be requested on the HD side. An additional question from the audience asked if OE tooling would be addressed in the same way as service information, as there is the same issue with HD tooling as there is for light duty tooling. Mr. Gorman wrapped up the discussion, stating that NASTF is willing to tackle the heavy duty side of things as long as the parties involved want NASTF to be involved. This is still being explored.
Tool Manufacturer Future Needs Panel
Panel presentations were made by Charlie Gorman, Equipment & Tool Institute; Shuvo Bhattacharjee, ETAS, Inc., and Jason Bartanen, I-CAR.
To view or download Mr. Gorman’s presentation, click here.
To view or download Mr. Bhattacharjee’s presentation, click here.
To view or download Mr. Bartanen’s presentation, click here.
Open Comment/Discussion
Mr. Gorman opened the floor for open comment and discussion. There was nothing additional.
Next Meeting
The next general meeting of NASTF will be held on Sunday, October 10, 2010 at 1:30 pm at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. The meeting will be held in conjunction with Automotive Service Repair Week (ASRW). Additional details will be posted to the NASTF website as they become known.