PART II. PROVISIONS SPECIFIC TO MARINE PRODUCTS
§1270. Establishment of new marine dealerships or relocations; protests; procedure
A. Whenever the commission receives an application for a recreational products dealer's license that would add a new marine dealership, it shall first notify the existing licensed marine dealership or dealerships selling the same-line makes, models, or classifications if the new dealership's proposed location is within the existing dealer's area of responsibility. Any same-line makes, models, or classifications dealership whose area of responsibility includes the location of the proposed new marine dealership may object to the granting of the license.
B. Whenever the commission receives an application for a recreational products dealer's license which would relocate an existing marine dealership, it shall first notify the existing licensed marine dealership or dealerships selling the same-line makes, models, or classifications if the dealership's proposed new location is within the existing dealer's area of responsibility. The existing same-line makes, models, or classifications dealership or dealerships shall have the right to object to the granting of the license only if the proposed relocation is within a radius of seven miles of its facility. However, without regard to distance, whenever the commission receives an application for the relocation of a marine dealership which would add an additional marine dealership to an existing same-line makes, models, or classifications dealership's area of responsibility, the affected dealership shall have the right to object.
C. The objection shall be in writing and shall be received by the commission within a fifteen-day period after receipt of the notice. The fifteen-day objection period shall be waived upon written notification to the commission from all licensees entitled to object that the licensees have no objections to the proposed change or addition for which the notice of intent was issued. If a timely objection is lodged, and prior to the issuance of the license, the commission shall hold a hearing within thirty days after receipt of the objection and issue its decision within ninety days after date of the hearing. Notice of hearing and an opportunity to participate therein shall be given to the manufacturer or distributor, the applicant for the license as a marine dealer, and to the protesting dealership or dealerships.
D. Whenever the commission receives an objection pursuant to the provisions of Subsection A of this Section, or whenever the commission receives an objection pursuant to the assignment of the marine dealer's area of principal sales and service responsibility, the commission shall consider the following and may consider any other relevant factors in determining whether there is good cause to approve or reject the assignment of the marine dealer's area of principal sales and service responsibility, or to issue a license:
(1) Whether the community or territory can support an additional marine dealership.
(2) The financial impact on both the applicant and the existing marine dealership or dealerships.
(3) Whether the existing marine dealerships of the same-line makes, models, or classifications in the dealership's area of responsibility are providing adequate representation, competition, and convenient consumer care for the marine products of the same-line makes, models, or classifications located within that area.
(4) Whether the issuance of the license would increase competition, be in the public interest, or both.
E. In disputes between the marine dealers and manufacturers and distributors regarding the execution of an agreement that would add a new same-line make marine dealership or would add the same product line regardless of brand name within the area of responsibility of an existing marine dealer, the name brand of the boat determines whether a dealer may enter into a franchise for a particular boat package or boat package line. The marine motor, marine engine, boat trailer, or any accessory made a part of a boat package shall not be the subject of, or a consideration in, an area of responsibility dispute for violation involving the boat package.
F. A manufacturer or distributor of a marine motor or marine engine may, in its discretion, enter into a warranty service agreement with a marine dealer of a boat package that is packaged with its particular brand marine motor or engine without violating the area of responsibility of any other marine dealer that has a franchise of that brand marine motor or engine. However, the warranty service agreement shall not be construed to permit the marine dealer to sell the marine motor or engine separate from the boat package, and the marine dealer shall not hold itself out to be a full-line or loose marine motor or engine dealership.
G. The provisions of this Section shall not apply when the marine products consist of a trolling motor, boat trailer, or watercraft trailer.
Acts 2012, No. 326, §1; Acts 2014, No. 111, §1.