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CATA Bulletin
January 15, 2007


3 vehicle prizes a highlight at Chicago Auto Show’s Feb. 8 ‘First Look’

November 17, 2010

Nineteen Chicago area charities will benefit from more than $2.5 million expected to be raised by the 2007 Chicago Auto Show’s black-tie gala, and three lucky attendees will leave with new vehicles.


But everyone who attends First Look for Charity on Feb. 8 will feel like a winner. The gala is the night before the Chicago Auto Show opens to the public. Last year, the event raised nearly $2.7 million. 

First Look for Charity, now in its 16th year, is a unique and elegant way to peruse the nation’s largest auto show before the throngs enter with their elbows a-flyin’. About 13,000 people are expected to attend First Look for Charity, a fraction compared to an average daily attendance during the show’s 10 public days. First Look for Charity attendees are treated to a wide variety of hors d’oeuvres; champagne, wine and soft drinks.


Tickets are $200 each and can be ordered at, or by calling 630-424-1636. For packages of 25 or more tickets, call theCATA’s Erik Higgins at 630-424-6008. All purchasers can designate their ticket proceeds to benefit any or all of the participating charities. 

Benefiting charities this year include Advocate Hope Children’s Hospital; American Lung Association of Metropolitan Chicago; Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago; Campagna Academy; and Cancer Health Alliance of Metropolitan Chicago.


Also, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago; Catholic Charities, Diocese of Joliet; Children’s Memorial Hospital; Clearbrook; The Cradle Foundation;Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America; Cure Autism Now Foundation; Franciscan Sisters of Chicago Service Corporation; Ray Graham Association for People with Disabilities; and Illinois Spina Bifida Association.


And, Ronald McDonald House Charities; Misericordia Heart of Mercy; National Multiple Sclerosis Society; and St. Coletta’s of Illinois Foundation. 

The Acadia is compliments of General Motors, GMC Division, and Chicagoland and northwest Indiana GMC dealers; Azera compliments of Hyundai Motor America and Chicagoland and northwest Indiana Hyundai dealers; and GTI compliments of Chicagoland Volkswagen dealers.


Vehicle winners must be present.


Convention countdown continues

November 17, 2010

By Ray Scarpelli Sr., Metro Chicago NADA Director

As 2007 revs up, many dealers are preparing for this year’s NADA convention in Las Vegas, Feb. 3-6. Attendees will enjoy a full agenda designed to increase dealer profitability and maximize success. Keynote addresses by a distinguished lineup of speakers, new workshops, franchise meetings, and displays by more than 600 exhibitors are just some of the other "must-attend" events. Other key highlights: 

  • Making last-minute convention plans? You can register onsite in Las Vegas.
  • Keynote speakers include NADA Chairman William Bradshaw; Richard Colliver, executive vice president of auto sales, Honda of America; former professional boxer Sugar Ray Leonard; and New York City Fire Chief Richard Picciotto, a World Trade Center collapse survivor, who will describe valuable success strategies.  
  • A new three-part series, Lifeline to Profit$: Workshops kicks off Saturday and will focus on cash management, variable operations, and fixed operations.
  • A breakfast and networking event exclusively for women dealers is slated for Saturday. For more info and to request an invitation, go to 
  • Minority dealers are invited to a special breakfast and networking event. For more information on this Sunday event or to request an invitation, visit
  • This year’s exhibit hall is better than ever with more than 600 exhibitors set up in two halls that cover more than 400,000 square feet. 

In legislative and regulatory news:


  • The NADA declared significant accomplishments for dealers as the 109th Congress earlier this month. During that Congress, the NADA successfully: gained bipartisan congressional support for the association’s proposal to require insurance companies to disclose vehicle total-loss data; reformed bankruptcy laws to create more fairness for dealers; provided a "safe harbor" for taxable highway tractors; and protected state dealer association health plans from problematic IRS rules. 

Also, the NADA lobbied to enact legislation to shield dealers from frivolous lawsuits such as vicarious liability and class action suits; repealed for two yearsNADA’s Unrelated Business Income Tax liability; made progress on estate tax relief; halted redundant and inconsistent consumer credit security proposals.


And, defeated onerous fuel economy mandates that threaten vehicle availability, safety, and jobs; restored the established business relationship exemption for the Do Not Fax rule; killed the so-called "right to repair" legislation; and protected the LIFO ("last in, first out") accounting method from elimination. 

  • Two new measures by the Environmental Protection Agency will benefit dealers. First, the EPA has reduced the burden for dealers who store oil (used oil, bulk motor oil, other bulk lubricants, gasoline, diesel) in aboveground tanks and containers. For more information go to or contact NADA Regulatory Affairs at regulatory 


Also, the EPA has mandated the use of a newly designed fuel-economy label, typically found on the Monroney sticker for light-duty vehicles, beginning with model year 2008 vehicles. The NADA generally supports this new label, which should prove more useful to prospective purchasers making fuel-economy comparisons among vehicles. For more on the new label, visit 

  • Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) and a group of bipartisan lawmakers said they are working to end title washing, in which cars with major damage are sold to unsuspecting consumers.


Lott and the other lawmakers said they would press Congress to approve legislation that would require insurance companies to make the VINs of totaled cars commercially available so that consumers can investigate vehicles’ histories. Lott is sponsoring a Senate bill; Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) is the sponsor of a similar House bill. 

The NADA and other automotive industry representatives support the passage of such legislation, and I urge you to contact your U.S. senators and representatives. To confirm their names and addresses and telephone numbers, see "Voting Information" at click on Find Districts/Officials.


  • An expensive provision to exempt middle-class taxpayers from paying the Alternative Minimum Tax was put off until next year. Important health savings account (HSA) provisions included in the final bill allow for tax-free transfers from other accounts, such as flexible spending accounts, individual retirement accounts, and other health reimbursement arrangements to fund an HSA. The measure allows for $2,700 in annual HSA contributions ($5,450 for families) and now permits employers to make larger contributions to lower-paid employees’ accounts.  President Bush is expected to sign the legislation.

Auto show ACE judges needed

November 17, 2010

Dealers and their general managers are asked in an annual appeal to participate as judges in the Chicago Auto Show’s Award for Customer Excellence program.

Bernas named new BBB president

November 17, 2010

Steve Bernas, who has overseen the BBB-CATA Advertising Review Program since its inception in 1996, was named president of the Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois, effective Jan. 1. 

Bernas, who had been the BBB office’s vice president and chief operating officer, succeeds James Baumhart, who was the office’s president for 17 years until his death in November.


Bernas began with the BBB-Chicago’s automotive division in 1987, then moved to the bureau’s operations division, which includes work on the advertising review program. 

He serves on the Illinois Attorney General’s Automotive Advertising Review Committee, and the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Fraud Task Force.


"(Steve) has a clear vision for the BBB that is grounded in its historical mission of ethics in the marketplace through self-regulation," said Doris Christopher, chairwoman of the BBB’s board of directors.     



November 17, 2010

Warranty Administrator 19 years’ dealership experience, specializing in Ford, Lincoln-Mercury warranty work. Strong background with warranty accounts receivable schedules, booking, ticket invoicing. ADP, Reynolds and Reynolds. Dean Michals, 847-299-5464.


Résumés of all candidates on file at the CATA.



November 17, 2010

Ernest Semersky, proprietor of The Porsche Exchange in Highland Park, is among 26 dealers named as 2007 Porsche Premier Dealers.

In Memoriam

November 17, 2010

F. Richard Everman, a retired Dodge dealer and chairman of the 1982 Chicago Auto Show, died Jan. 2 at age 81.


Mr. Everman and his wife, the late Olga, operated Suburban Dodge Sales, Inc., in Berwyn for 25 years, and he served on the CATA board of directors from 1976 to 1984, ascending to association president in 1980-81 and then to auto show chairman.


Mr. Everman served in the Navy in World War II and was a lifelong Chicago White Sox fan. He is survived by daughters Kathryn and Sharyn, and many nieces and nephews

Contributions can be made in his name the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, 500 NE Spanish River Blvd., Ste. 8, Boca Raton FL 33431. See