HARRISBURG – Senator Pat Stefano (R-32) plans to introduce a bill soon that would allow auto dealers in Pennsylvania to reopen with proper safety measures in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The legislation, introduced with Senator Doug Mastriano (R-33), would require the Secretary of the Department of Community and Economic Development to issue a waiver to Governor Wolf’s business closure order to allow auto dealers to re-open. Dealers across the state have been shuttered by the Governor’s order to close all non-life-sustaining businesses since March 19.
If reopened, auto dealers would still be required to follow the same COVID-19 social distancing practices and safety guidelines that every other life-sustaining business follows in order to limit close personal contact to protect the health of customers and employees.
“Transportation is life-sustaining for Pennsylvanians, especially for the healthcare workers and other essential employees who need a way to get back and forth to work every day,” Stefano said. “We have seen other industries adapt to social distancing requirements to minimize the spread of COVID-19. There is no doubt that auto dealers could do the same and remain open safely.”
Governor Wolf announced last week that some auto sales could be completed online. However, not every dealership has the ability to complete these transactions remotely, and many Pennsylvanians still lack access to reliable, secure internet service – especially in rural areas.
“Allowing remote auto sales was a step in the right direction, but it didn’t solve the problem for many consumers who need a vehicle,” Stefano said. “Getting more of these businesses up and running safely will make auto sales available to all consumers, not just a select few.”
CONTACT: Mark Fetzko (717) 787-7175