Here’s the U.S. landscape for vehicle blue laws and challenges:
Colorado – CRS 12-6-302 prohibits the sale of new and used vehicles on Sundays, but permits repairs and PG&A sales. Three attempts to lift the auto blue law have failed since 2004.
Illinois – 625 ILCS 5/5-106 bans auto sales on Sundays, but carves out a specific exception “to sell motorcycles, motor driven cycles, motorized pedalcycles when offered for sale by a dealer licensed…to sell only such motor vehicles.” Motor homes and occasional trade show exhibitions are also exempt.
Indiana – Dealer Mark Forszt, owner of four Harley-Davidson dealerships, has enlisted the support of state Sen. Ed Charbonneau to get the law lifted. SB 68 would apply to powersports dealers but leave the car sales ban intact. The bill is being considered by the Committee on Commerce and Public Policy & Interstate Cooperation.
Iowa – Iowa auto dealers have been restless about a challenge in neighboring Minnesota. Dealers near the Minnesota state line fear they will lose sales if Minnesota dealers are allowed to open on Sundays. Iowa has a law (VC 322.36) that does not require motorcycle dealers to keep regular business hours.
Louisiana – RS 51:193 forbids motor vehicle dealers to open on Sundays.
Maryland – State Sen. John C. Astle, Annapolis, has proposed SB 251, which would lift the blue law in Anne Arundel County. The state already allows vehicle sales in Howard, Montgomery, Prince George’s and Wicomico counties because they border Virginia, which also permits Sunday sales. Powersports dealers in Worcester County may also sell on Sundays. The bill is set for a hearing March 24. So far the bill has had no opposition in either state chamber.
Michigan – Act 66 of 1953 forbids Sunday car sales in counties with more than 130,000 people, but has an exception for those who observe the Sabbath on Saturday. Support for a change is growing among auto dealers. Violating the law can lead to fines or revocation of a dealer’s license. A recent Associated Press article questioned the ban, but Dealernews didn’t find any legislative challenges.
Maine – A recent effort to lift the vehicle sales ban died in committee earlier this month. State Rep. Don Pilon of Saco sought to end the ban with LD1701/HP1202. The bill died in the Committee on Business, Research and Economic Development Feb. 23. Pilon has said he will reintroduce it if he’s re-elected, but an auto dealer has created an online petition opposing the repeal. A powersports dealer, Kittery Motorcycles, challenged the law in court in 2002, but the state prevailed. (Continued)