A meeting of the Maine Motor Vehicle Franchise Board was held on Friday, October 15, 2004 in the Executive conference room at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, 101 Hospital Street, Augusta, Maine.
Chairman John McCurry, Esq. called the meeting to order at 9:00 am.
Present: John McCurry, Wallace Camp, Nelson Carlson, William Dowling, Adam Lee, and John Quirk.
Bruce Gerrity,Esq. Attorney for the Maine Auto Dealers Association spoke with the board members regarding Chapter 14, the Rules for the Maine Motor Vehicle Franchise Board.
Mr. Gerrity discussed whether there should be changes in the Rules 2(3) and 6(1)A to reflect the law's designation of burden of proof. He also mentioned a few typographical errors in the rules, which have since been corrected.
- After discussion, the Board agreed that the Chair would review the statute and decide whether Rules 2(3) and 6(1)A should be changed to reflect the law's designations of the burdens of proof. The Chair will then send any changes to the Board members.
- The Chair verified with the Board members how their names should appear on the letterhead, there were no changes.
- The Board has decided to hold four board meetings per year, unless there is an ongoing active case.
- John McCurry has requested reimbursement for his upcoming trip to San Antonio, Texas for the National Association of Boards and Commissioners seminar. John Quirk made a motion of approval for reimbursement, the
Board were all in favor.
- John McCurry stated that the sellers of recreational vehicles have been removed from the Dealer/Manufacturer List, unless they also sell new vehicles.
- The Board requested some training for hearings, as none of members has had any prior hearing experience. The Chair stated that the training could possibly be done at the next board meeting.
- John Quirk stated that there was not any legislation to provide for having alternate board members, in case any of the Board weren't able to attend a hearing. All Board members agreed that having alternates available would be a good idea. Robert E. O' Connell, Jr., Director of License Services stated that if legislation for "Alternates" was to be created, make sure to have sufficient details provided within the legislation, so that a separate rule wouldn't have to be created. A Manufacturer would replace another Manufacturer, A Dealer would replace another Dealer, etc.
- The Chair stated to the Board to attempt to have all six members present, to be sure to have a Quorum (4 out of the 6 members), in case one or two members had to drop out.
- William Dowling questioned the letter of complaint from John B. Darling, President of Darling's Auto, et al in regards to why the Board didn't respond within the 120 day time frame. After discussion, the Board agreed that the Chair would review Darling's complaint/letter to the Board and advise how to best to reflect that the Plaintiff has tolled the statute of limitations by filing with the Board last fall, since the legislature had removed jurisdiction from the Secretary of State and placed it on the Board effective September 2003, even though the Board was not legally
constituted until August 2004. Darling's would then have to refile its complaint after the Board Rules became effective.
- John McCurry, in response to a question from Wallace Camp regarding judicial immunity, stated that the Board has quasi judicial immunity, that the State cannot be sued, except in extreme circumstances.
- Robert O'Connell questioned whether the Board is required to publish notice of the meetings. The Board agreed to publish notice of the board meetings.
- The Board decided that individual business cards were not necessary.
- The Chair and the Board agreed that establishing a web page for the Maine Motor Vehicle Franchise Board, to keep the public informed, was a good idea.
Comments close on Monday, October 25, 2004. Additional comments, if applicable, will be distributed to the Board
John McCurry moved to adjourn the meeting at 11:00 am, all members in favor of adjournment. The meeting officially adjourned at 11:02 am.
Next M.M.V.F.B. meeting to be held on Friday, November 19, 2004 at 9:00 am.