U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) today made the following statement regarding the early success of the CARS program, known as Cash for Clunkers, which mirrored Stabenow's Drive America Forward Act introduced this year. In addition to championing the legislation, Stabenow is working with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood for effective implementation. Just yesterday, she acted to fix a NHTSA requirement for Manufacturer's Statements of Origin (MSOs), which would have prevented many Michigan dealers from participating in the CARS program right away.
"Today, the early success of the CARS program is clear in Michigan and across the country. With nearly 20,000 auto dealers registered, countless consumers have already rushed into dealer showrooms to take advantage of the incentives. I championed this program because I knew it would help boost auto sales, and that is exactly what is happening on car lots throughout our state.
"I am also very pleased to have worked with Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood to fix a technical problem that would have prevented a number of Michigan dealers from taking early advantage of the CARS program. Under program rules, all dealers are required to submit a Manufacturer's Statement of Origin for new vehicle transactions in order to be eligible to participate. MSOs are not readily available to Michigan dealers, which is why I asked and Secretary LaHood agreed to allow our dealers to submit an alternate document. We are staying on top of things so that this program works for Michigan businesses and consumers as it was intended.
"This program is about saving jobs and providing much-needed assistance to our dealerships, and the communities that depend on them, when they need it most. The CARS program is off to a terrific start, and I look forward to seeing more new vehicles move off the lot."
- U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow