Looking Ahead to an Election Year—What It Means for the Industry
December 22, 2011

As 2011 comes to a close and the United States approaches an election year, several industry leaders have offered their insights as to what the coming election could mean for the auto glass industry. One major trend among industry representatives is a hope for a new focus on small businesses across the nation.

“I think this election could have a big impact on the economy and ultimately all of our businesses,” says Troy Mason, owner of Techna Glass in Salt Lake City, Utah. “I think auto glass retailers, along with all businesses, are looking for a president who is pro-small business and will move our economy forward from the bottom up instead of creating more government bureaucracy and big business bail out.”

Mark Liston, president of Waco, Texas-based Glass Doctor, agrees.

“The country needs confidence in the person in the White House and their legislators,” he says. “Auto glass retailers need someone who understands how important small business is to the U.S. economy.”

David Zoldowski, president of Auto One Glass and Accessories in Brighton, Mich., takes this outlook a step further.

“I believe that, regardless of which party is elected, more pressure will be placed on ‘made in America’ and small business being the core to the future success of our country,” says Zoldowski. “The Walmart in our industry will experience significantly more pressure to divest itself from its [third-party administration] services.”      

David Casey, president of Orlando, Fla.-based Superglass Windshield Repair, says he thinks any impact depends on the results of the election.

“In the election, if we go left, I see more infrastructure building, including glass and automotive projects that will include glass. If we go right, I see no spending, no lending and a downturn for all types of glass business,” says Casey. “As far as what we in the auto glass business are looking for in the country’s leadership, I don’t think it differs from most Americans in that we are starving for a government that puts the country ahead of party lines and uses its supposed superior intelligence to create solid solutions that serve us today and in the future.”

Tom Feeney, president and CEO of Safelite, cites concerns about what the timing of the election might do to an already down economy.
“I am afraid that the upcoming presidential election will further stall any economic improvement as Washington gets paralyzed with inaction,” says Feeney.

Michael Barry, CEO of Chicago-based Glass America, says he doesn’t expect the industry at large to see major effects—but is optimistic about the economy.

“Seriously, I do not see the presidential elections having any impact on the [auto glass] industry for 2012,” says Barry. “My hope is that all of us in the industry vote and elect leaders at the local, state and federal level who can make intelligent and meaningful changes. If we accomplish this, then the 2012 election will have a very powerful impact on our country and economy for many years going forward.”

This story is an original story by AGRR™ magazine/glassBYTEs.com™. Subscribe to AGRR™ Magazine.
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