New York Post: New York Politicians Join Tesla’s Fight Against the Direct Sales Ban
Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk is trying to pull the plug on a bill that would ban direct sales of his electric cars in the Empire State.
The outspoken billionaire has joined forces with state assemblyman David Buchwald and other politicians in Westchester County to rev up objections to the bill, which would require all auto makers to sell through registered third-party dealers.
Musk’s politicking in New York comes after New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie sideswiped the entrepreneur with a ban on direct sales to consumers in the Garden State.
Tesla is unique in selling through its own stores, rather than independent dealers. This has irked auto dealers in some states, leading to direct-selling bans in Texas, Arizona and New Jersey.
The New York bill has already been passed by two state Assembly committees ahead of a vote by the full Assembly, sources told The Post.
Earlier this year, the bill received almost unanimous approval by the Assembly’s transportation committee. On Wednesday, it was passed by the code committee. Backers of the bill, including several dealership associations, said they are aiming to get the wider bill passed by summer.
On Friday, Buchwald will hold a press conference at Tesla’s showroom in the Westchester Mall in White Plains to speak out against the proposed ban. Tesla’s White Plains showroom employs 35 people.
“We shouldn’t change the rules midstream just as a company is starting out,” Buchwald told The Post. “Tesla’s goal is to sell cars, not upend the rest of the auto industry.”
The Democrat will be joined by James Chen, Tesla’s vice president of regulatory affairs; White Plains mayor Tom Roach; and Michael Cindrich, the mayor of Mount Kisco.