Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Representative Howitt To Serve On Auto Body Labor Rates Commission

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) has appointed State Representative Steven Howitt (R-Seekonk) to serve on a special legislative commission investigating auto body labor rates in Massachusetts.

Created as part of the Fiscal Year 2022 state budget, the 14-member commission has been tasked with conducting an analysis of the state’s auto body labor rates to see how they compare to surrounding states and to determine if the rates are reasonable. The commission will also review the impact of labor rates on the auto body labor workforce, and how managed competition in the automobile insurance market has impacted those rates.

“Steve is a long-time car enthusiast and has served as a member of the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure since he was first elected to the House of Representatives,” said Representative Jones. “His interests and years of experience in these areas make him the perfect choice to serve on this special commission that will work to ensure that auto body labor rates are fair and reasonable.” 

The co-chairs of the Joint Committee on Financial Services, Representative James Murphy (D-Weymouth) and Senator Brendan Crighton (D-Lynn), are co-chairing the special commission, which will also include representatives from the Division of Insurance and the Attorney General’s office, as well as a member representing a vocational-technical school or program who will be appointed by Governor Baker. Additional commission members will be selected by the Automobile Insurers Bureau of Massachusetts; the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Massachusetts, Inc.; and the Massachusetts State Automobile Dealers Association, Inc.

The commission is scheduled to file a report of its findings, including any legislative or regulatory recommendations, by December 31.

Howitt currently serves as the Ranking Minority Member on both the Joint Committee on Export Development and the Joint Committee on Transportation. He is also a member of the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure.

A member of the House of Representatives since 2011, Howitt represents the Fourth Bristol District communities of Norton (Precincts 1 and 2); Rehoboth; Seekonk; and Swansea (Precincts 4 and 5).