KOAA: Local dealer proposes car bailout alternative
Washington, Nov 24, 2008 -
Story By: David Tauchen
When it comes to the debate over bailing out the big three car manufacturers, one local dealer has come up with a solution. Their idea was picked up by a Colorado lawmaker, who introduced the idea on the House floor in Washington Thursday.
"This nation's economy is driven around the car industry," said Phil Long Chief Operating Officer Bob Fenton. Fenton says the company felt a direct bail out would not solve the problems of low-sales and low consumer confidence in American cars. They feel the problem must be solved at the consumer level.
In a letter addressed to Congressman Doug Lamborn, Phil Long CEO Jay Cimino proposed offering incentives for Americans to buy American cars, rather than spending billions to inject money into Ford, Chrysler, and GM. The approach, they believe, would jump start the big three manufacturers by moving excess inventory off the lots of car dealerships across the country.
"A bail out for the auto industry is not the fix in my humble opinion," Cimino stated in the letter. "A bail out does not solve the problem for the short term or long term."
The idea evidently was well received by Rep. Lamborn. On Thursday he introduced House Bill 7298. Among other things, it provides a $10,000 tax incentive for any consumer who buys a car that was made in the United States.
"Consumers need to have the confidence and incentives to buy the cars. That's what this bill would do," said Rep. Lamborn. "This is a contribution to the debate so that we can look at alternatives to just throwing money at the problem. We can look at a long-term solution."
Cimino and Fenton also are looking to government and industry leaders to curb a trend of American consumers favoring foreign made automobiles, a problem that has eaten away at sales and, they say, weakened the overall U.S. economy. They want leaders to focus on restoring consumer confidence in American manufacturing. Lamborn's bill, they believe, is a start.
Lamborn says he hopes the HB 7298 will be picked up for debate in a committee. If it is not, he plans to reintroduce it in January.
-end of article-
To watch the video: follow the link
THOMAS link to H.R. 7298