O
hio Legislative Service Commission
122nd Final Bill Analysis
Effective Date update from the LSC Status Sheet: 12/18/97

Because of Ohio Supreme Court interpretations, effective dates published in the LSC Status Sheet are not authoritative, and users of the LSC Status Sheet rely upon them at their own risk. The effective dates have been unofficially and undefinitively determined by the LSC Division of Legal Review and Technical Services solely for the convenience of users.

Am. Sub. H.B. 143
122nd General Assembly
(As Passed by the General Assembly)


Requires the annual registration of "motor vehicle collision repair operators" who engage in five or more separate motor vehicle collision repairs in a 12-month period and imposes criminal penalties for a violation of this requirement.
Permits a motor vehicle collision repair operator who "substantially complies" with the act's registration requirements and who is making a "good faith effort toward achieving compliance" with all of the act's requirements to obtain a temporary registration and renew the temporary registration not more than four times.
Establishes the Board of Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration to administer and enforce, through an Executive Director the Board appoints, the law on motor vehicle collision repair registration.
Establishes a preemption policy applicable to local laws that are adopted or enacted after the act's effective date and that are limited to the registration of persons engaged in business as motor vehicle collision repair operators in a manner corresponding to the provisions of the act.
Requires motor vehicle collision repair operators to have general liability insurance and liability insurance for motor vehicles in their care, custody, or control.
Establishes an initial and annual renewal registration fee, subject to modification by the Board, of $100 for each motor vehicle collision repair operator's business location.
Creates the Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration Fund in the state treasury to consist of all fees and fines collected by the Board.
Provides that no person required to be registered under the act has the benefit of any lien for labor or materials unless the person is so registered.
Permits the Executive Director to appoint an enforcement officer who is required to report to the Executive Director and the Board the name and address of any operator that the enforcement officer has reasonable grounds to believe is operating in violation of the act.
Authorizes the Department of Taxation to disclose to the Board any information necessary for the Board to verify the existence of an applicant's valid vendor's license and current state tax identification number.
Supersedes a portion of Am. Sub. S.B. 60 of the 122nd General Assembly that allowed a commercial tractor to be issued a single license plate and requires a commercial tractor to be issued two license plates and to display the registration validation sticker on the front license plate.

CONTENT AND OPERATION

Prohibition, definition, and penalty

(secs. 4775.01, 4775.02, and 4775.99)

The act prohibits any person from acting as a motor vehicle collision repair operator unless that person is registered by the Board of Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration (sec. 4775.02). The act defines "motor vehicle collision repair operator" as a person who owns or manages, in whole or in part, a motor vehicle collision repair facility, whether or not mechanical or other repairs also are performed at that facility. A "motor vehicle collision repair facility" is defined as a business location in which five or more separate motor vehicle collision repairs are performed for the general public in a 12-month period, commencing with the day of the month in which the first such repair is made.

All of the following persons are specifically excluded from the definition and the act's requirements: (1) an employee, other than a manager, of a motor vehicle collision repair operator, (2) a licensed motor vehicle dealer, (3) a licensed motor vehicle dealer who also is the owner, part owner, or operator of a motor vehicle collision repair facility, (4) a licensed motor vehicle auction owner, (5) a licensed motor vehicle leasing dealer, (6) a licensed motor vehicle salvage dealer, (7) a person or lessee who owns or leases ten or more motor vehicles used principally in connection with any established business and who does not perform motor vehicle collision repairs on motor vehicles other than those used principally in connection with the established business, (8) a motor vehicle renting dealer who does not perform motor vehicle collision repairs on motor vehicles other than those used in connection with the established motor vehicle renting business, (9) a person who performs collision repairs to the motor vehicles of a single commercial, industrial, or governmental establishment exclusively and does not offer or provide motor vehicle collision repair service to the general public, and (10) the owner, part owner, or officer of, or instructor employed by, an educational institution that provides motor vehicle collision repair instruction. (Sec. 4775.01(B).)

For a violation of the registration provision, the act imposes a penalty of not more than $1,000 for a first offense, and for each subsequent offense a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $5,000 (sec. 4775.99).

Board of Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration

(secs. 4775.03 and 4775.04)

The act creates the Board of Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration, consisting of seven members appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. Each member of the Board must be an Ohio resident. Five of the members must be motor vehicle collision repair operators. One member must have expertise in motor vehicle mechanical repair, and one must be a representative of the public who has no financial interest in the motor vehicle repair industry. (Sec. 4775.03(A).)

Within 90 days after the act's effective date, the Governor is required to make initial appointments to the Board (sec. 4775.03(B)). For the motor vehicle collision repair operator members and the member with expertise in motor vehicle mechanical repair, the Governor may make the appointments from lists of names submitted by the Automotive Service Association of Ohio, Inc. (ASAO). Within 30 days after the act's effective date, the ASAO must submit a list containing two names for the motor vehicle mechanical repair member and 12 names for the motor vehicle collision repair members. Within 60 days of a vacancy occurring as a result of the expiration of a term and within 30 days after other vacancies, the ASAO must provide the Governor with a list of three names. For all such appointments, the Governor may appoint from those lists. If the ASAO fails to submit the lists to the Governor within the prescribed times, the Governor must appoint an individual of the Governor's own choosing who meets the qualifications for appointment. (Sec. 4775.03(C).)

After staggered initial terms, terms of office are for three years (sec. 4775.03(B)). The act contains standard language regarding filling of vacancies, oath of office, removal of members, meeting times, quorum requirements, and payment of a per diem set by the Department of Administrative Services and all actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of Board duties. (Sec. 4775.03(B), (D), (E), and (F).) The act prohibits any person from serving as a member for more than two consecutive full three-year terms and permits the Board chairperson to appoint committees as necessary to carry out the Board's duties (secs. 4775.03(B) and (E)).

The Board is required to do all of the following: (1) adopt rules to carry out the act's purposes, including a rule regarding liability insurance required of registrants, which rule must permit the use of certain insurance policies, (2) appoint an Executive Director to serve at the Board's pleasure, (3) direct the Executive Director in the performance of the Executive Director's duties, (4) consider and make recommendations in regard to all matters submitted to it by the Executive Director, (5) determine whether to refuse to issue or renew a registration certificate or determine whether to waive a suspension of a registration certificate as provided in the act, and (6) do all acts and perform all functions necessary for the act's administration and enforcement (sec. 4775.04(A)).

The act states that none of its provisions are to be interpreted as granting the Board any authority over a motor vehicle collision repair operator concerning the quality of work performed in the repair of, or installation of parts on, motor vehicles (sec. 4775.04(B)).

Executive Director

(sec. 4775.05)

The Board is required to appoint an individual who is not a member of the Board as a full-time employee of the Board to serve as the Board's Executive Director, serving at its pleasure and direction and paid in a pay range set by statute and determined by the Director of Administrative Services. Subject to the Board's approval, the Executive Director must determine the office space, supplies, and professional and clerical assistance necessary to effectively perform the Executive Director's duties. (Sec. 4775.05(A).)

The Executive Director must perform all of the following duties: (1) review registration applications and submit them to the Board for its approval, (2) issue registration certificates, as approved by the Board, to qualified persons, (3) maintain a written record of all registrants, including the name, address, and motor vehicle collision repair registration certificate number of each registered motor vehicle collision repair operator, making this record available to any person upon request and payment of a fee sufficient to cover the cost of copying the record, (4) collect all fees, (5) appoint enforcement officers, who are to serve at the Executive Director's pleasure, as needed to assist the Executive Director in carrying out the act, (6) gather evidence of violations of the act by any person or motor vehicle collision repair operator, or partner or officer of any operator, and upon reasonable belief that a violation has occurred, present the evidence to the Board for its consideration, (7) serve as secretary of the Board and maintain a written record of all Board proceedings, (8) notify all motor vehicle collision repair operators of changes in the Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Law and related rules, and (9) do all other things the Board requests for the act's administration and enforcement. (Sec. 4775.05(B).)

The act provides that nothing in it is to be construed as authorizing the Board or the Executive Director to enforce any provision of law other than those contained in it; if, however, the Executive Director or Board determines or suspects that a person violated any other provision of law, the Executive Director or Board is required to notify the governmental entity that is responsible for enforcement of that provision of law (sec. 4775.05(B)(6)).

Enforcement officer

(sec. 4775.06)

The act requires that an enforcement officer appointed by the Executive Director to assist the Executive Director report to the Executive Director and the Board the name and address of any motor vehicle collision repair operator that the officer has reasonable grounds to believe is operating in violation of the act, and notify the operator of the suspected violation. Within 60 days after notification is sent, the enforcement officer is required to determine whether the operator who has been notified of a suspected violation has come into compliance with the act. If the operator fails to correct the suspected violation within 60 days after the date the operator receives the notification, the enforcement officer must notify the Executive Director and the Board of the operator's failure to correct the suspected violation. Upon receiving a second notification of an operator's failure to comply with the act, the Executive Director must notify the government entity having enforcement authority over the condition or activity giving rise to the suspected violation in writing of the condition or activity, the nature of the suspected violation, and the name and address of the operator suspected of violating the act.

The act requires that an enforcement officer monitor periodically the progress of any action taken in connection with the suspected violation with the appropriate government entity, including any investigation or charges that are filed in connection with the suspected violation. Upon obtaining such information, the Executive Director or the enforcement officer monitoring such progress must notify the Board of the progress of the suspected violation and any accompanying investigation, charges, or other action taken in connection with the suspected violation. (Sec. 4775.06.)

Registration

(secs. 4745.01 and 4775.07)

Any person required to be registered as a motor vehicle collision repair operation must apply to the Board on forms it prescribes. The forms must contain sufficient information to identify the applicant, including name, address, state tax identification number, and any other identifying data the Board prescribes by rule. For an applicant that is a partnership, identifying data as prescribed by the Board may be required for each partner; for an applicant that is a corporation, identifying data prescribed by the Board may be required of each corporate officer and each person in charge of each place of the motor vehicle collision repair operator's business in the state. The act requires the applicant to affirm the application by oath.

The applicant must include with the application the initial registration fee and proof satisfactory to the Board that the applicant has all of the following: (1) a current state and federal tax identification number, (2) a valid vendor's license, (3) a United States Environmental Protection Agency identification number issued under federal law, (4) general liability insurance and liability insurance that protects a person against liability for damage to motor vehicles in the applicant's care, custody, or control in an amount and form that conforms to the Board's rules, and (5) workers' and unemployment compensation coverage. The applicant must affirm that the applicant is in compliance with all applicable federal and state statutes and rules and all local ordinances and resolutions, including all applicable zoning regulations. (Sec. 4775.07(A).)

Upon receipt of the completed application form and fees and after the Board determines that the applicant meets the requirements described above, the Board must direct the Executive Director to issue a registration certificate to the applicant for each place of business. The operator must display the registration certificate in a conspicuous place on the business premises for which the registration is obtained. (Sec. 4775.07(B).) If an operator experiences a change in any of the information or data required by the act or by Board rule, the operator must notify the Board of the change, in writing and within 60 days after the date the information becomes obsolete. The registration certificate of an operator who fails to submit the written notification within this time is suspended automatically, subject to waiver by the Board for good cause shown. (Sec. 4775.07(D).)

The act provides that each registration certificate expires annually on the date of its original issuance and may be renewed in accordance with the standard license renewal provisions contained in existing law. The application for a renewal of a registration certificate must be accompanied by the same information and proof as must accompany an initial application for a registration certificate. (Secs. 4745.01 and 4775.07(C).)

Temporary registration

(sec. 4775.10)

The act provides that a motor vehicle collision repair operator who "substantially complies" with the registration requirements and who is making a good faith effort toward achieving compliance with all of the act's requirements may obtain a temporary motor vehicle collision repair registration certificate. Following the application of and payment of a fee by an operator, the Board, in its discretion, may direct the Executive Director to issue a temporary registration certificate to an operator the Board finds to be in substantial compliance with the act's registration requirements and to be making a "good faith effort toward achieving compliance" with all of the act's requirements. Upon receiving direction from the Board, the Executive Director must issue a temporary registration certificate.

Except under circumstances described below regarding the renewal of a temporary registration certificate, such a registration certificate is effective for one year from the date of issuance or until the date the operator obtains a regular registration certificate, whichever date occurs first. If an operator obtains such a regular registration certificate prior to the expiration of the operator's temporary registration certificate, a portion of the fee paid by the operator to obtain the temporary registration certificate must be applied to the fee imposed by the act for obtaining a regular registration certificate in an amount that corresponds to the portion of the year the operator is not utilizing the temporary registration certificate.

The act requires the Board to adopt rules in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act that specify criteria an operator must meet in order to be considered to be in substantial compliance with the registration requirements, and that specify criteria an operator must meet in order to be considered as making a good faith effort toward achieving compliance with all of the requirements. The Board must consider the impact of these rules on encouraging competition between all operators and not impairing the ability of operators who have been in the motor vehicle collision repair business for less than one year to succeed in the market place.

A temporary motor vehicle collision repair registration may be renewed not more than four consecutive times. An operator may apply for the renewal of a temporary registration certificate prior to the certificate's expiration. The Board must consider such an application and may direct the Executive Director to renew the temporary registration certificate of an applicant who meets the act's requirements for obtaining such a certificate. Upon recommendation by the Board, the Executive Director must issue a renewal of a temporary registration certificate. Neither the Board nor the Executive Director may renew a person's temporary registration certificate more than four consecutive times.

The act provides that a renewal of a temporary registration certificate is effective for one year from the date of issuance of the renewal of registration. A temporary registration certificate continues in effect during the period in which an applicant is being considered for renewal if the applicant applies for renewal prior to the expiration of the temporary registration certificate.

Fees; Fund

(sec. 4775.08)

The act sets the initial and annual renewal fee for a registration certificate and for a temporary registration certificate at $100 for each business location at which the motor vehicle collision repair operator conducts business. The act permits the Board, subject to Controlling Board approval, to establish fees in excess of or less than that amount, provided that the fees may not exceed or be less than that amount by more than 50%. The Board must adjust the fees as necessary to provide for the expenses associated with carrying out the act without causing an excessive build-up of surplus funds in the Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration Fund (see next paragraph). (Sec. 4775.08(A).)

The Board is required to deposit all fees and fines collected under the act in the Motor Vehicle Collision Repair Registration Fund, which the act creates in the state treasury. The Board must use the Fund solely for the administration and enforcement of the act. (Sec. 4775.08(B).)

Refusal to issue or renew registrations; suspension and revocation; enforcement

(sec. 4775.09)

The Board, in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, may refuse to issue or renew a registration certificate or may determine whether to waive a suspension of a registration certificate as provided in the act (sec. 4775.09(A)).

Upon application by the Board, the court of common pleas for the county in which any person conducts or attempts to conduct business as a motor vehicle collision repair operator in violation of the act or any rule adopted under it may issue an injunction, a cease and desist order, or other appropriate order restraining the person from continuing the violation. This provision operates in addition to and does not prohibit the enforcement of any other law. (Sec. 4775.09(B).)

Upon request of the Executive Director or as a result of complaints, the Board must investigate the alleged violation (sec. 4775.09(C)).

The act prohibits any person whose application for registration is denied from opening or operating a facility for business as a motor vehicle collision repair facility under the name of the person designated in the application for a registration certificate or under any other name prior to registering as a motor vehicle collision repair operator (sec. 4775.09(E)).

Lien bar

(sec. 4775.09(D))

The act specifies that a person who is not registered as required under the act is not entitled to the benefit of any lien for labor or materials.

Preemption

(sec. 4775.11)

The act establishes a specific, limited preemption in regard to the ability of local governments to regulate motor vehicle collision repair operators. The act states that it is the intent of the General Assembly to preempt any local ordinance, resolution, or other law adopted or enacted after its effective date, that is limited to the registration of persons engaged in business as motor vehicle collision repair operators in a manner corresponding to the provisions of the act. However, the act expressly does not preempt any local law adopted or enacted prior to its effective date or any local law that may require registration or licensure as a component of imposing additional requirements on persons engaged in business as motor vehicle collision repair operators or technicians. Also, the act does not preempt the enforcement of any local law regulating motor vehicle collision repair operators or technicians, including building, zoning, health, safety, or other similar codes or laws.

Tax Department disclosure

(secs. 4775.07(E) and 5703.21)

The act requires an applicant for registration as a motor vehicle collision repair operator to include with the application proof satisfactory to the Board that the applicant has a current state tax identification number and a valid vendor's license (see "Registration," above). In order for the Board to verify this information with the Tax Department, the act creates an exception to the general prohibition against Tax Department agents divulging any information acquired under orders of the Department and authorizes the Department to disclose to the Board any information necessary for the Board to verify the existence of an applicant's valid vendor's license and current state tax identification number.

Commercial tractor license plates

(secs. 4503.19 and 4503.21)

Am. Sub. S.B. 60 of the 122nd General Assembly specified that a commercial tractor that does not receive an apportioned license plate under the International Registration Plan (IRP) must be issued one license plate and validation sticker, which must be displayed on the front of the commercial tractor. The act supersedes the changes from Am. Sub. S.B. 60 and specifies that a commercial tractor that does not receive an apportioned license plate under the IRP must be issued two license plates and one validation sticker, which validation sticker must be displayed on the front of the commercial tractor. Except in regard to such a commercial tractor, the act requires that a motor vehicle that is issued two license plates must display the validation sticker only on the rear license plate.

The act restates the following requirements of Am. Sub. S.B. 60 without making any additional changes: (1) the availability of a duplicate registration, license plate, or validation sticker if the registration certificate and license plates have been impounded following a license suspension, (2) a specific cross-reference to the service fees that must be paid for each application for registration or registration renewal received by a deputy registrar, (3) changing references to "validation stickers" to the singular, (4) a requirement that a trailer, manufactured home, semitrailer, manufacturer thereof, dealer or in transit company therein display a validation sticker only on the rear of such vehicle, and (5) changing a reference from a "semitrailer" to a "commercial tractor" in the context of displaying a license plate only on the front of a vehicle.

HISTORY

ACTION DATE JOURNAL ENTRY

Introduced 01-28-97 p. 152
Reported, H. Economic
Development &
Small Business 05-07-97 pp. 723-724
Passed House (54-40) 05-28-97 pp. 921-926
Reported, S. Highways &
Transportation 07-29-97 pp. 1031-1032
Passed Senate (32-0) 07-30-97 pp. 1057-1058
House concurred in Senate
amendments (75-19) 08-03-97 pp. 1622-1623



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