Header, the Administration of the Honorable Lincoln C. Almond
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  2002 Signature
2002 Veto
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1995 Veto
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July 3, 1995


In accordance with the provisions of RI. Gen. Laws § 43-1-4, I am transmitting herewith, with my disapproval, 95-H-5189, "An Act Relating to Commercial Law - Deceptive Trade Practices."

This bill would require all gas and electric appliance repair persons to inform consumers in writing, "prior to such servicing or repair, of the need to use and the type of any new, used, rebuilt, or other replacement parts used by the person to effectuate such servicing or repair." A violation would constitute a misdemeanor and carry a fine of up to five hundred dollars ($500).

The apparent intent of the bill is to protect consumers from the use of used parts in repairing appliances without their knowledge. The bill may also have been intended to provide consumers with a parts listing prior to repair. As drafted, however, the bill goes far beyond what is necessary to protect consumers. Moreover, requiring a written list of all new and used parts prior to servicing becomes onerous where numerous small parts are necessary and also in situations where internal inspection reveals that additional parts are necessary to complete the repair. As such, the bill could easily result in an increased cost to consumers and delay in completing repairs. Also, criminal sanctions do not appear appropriate.

The apparent goals of the bill could be achieved by laws requiring that consumers be given the option to choose new or used (when available) parts for a repair and that a written estimate be provided, which estimate could only be exceeded upon notification and approval. Presently, nothing prevents consumers from insisting on both conditions or taking their business elsewhere.

For the foregoing reasons, I disapprove of this legislation and respectfully urge your support of this veto.


Lincoln Almond