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Thomas D’Addario: Tesla direct sales not such a bargain

I am responding to Dan Haar’s column, “Past time to let Tesla into state,” Conn. Post, Feb. 15, 2018)

I am writing on behalf of my dealership in Shelton, D’Addario Auto Group, a third-generation dealership. We have about 100 employees. We also donate to nonprofit organizations such as the Children’s Medical Center, and other numerous organizations, through donations and family funds.

Connecticut is not the only state to not allow the direct sales model Tesla wants. In fact, thirty of fifty states do not have Tesla stores operating legally within their borders, and almost all fifty states have strict limits on direct-sell stores to protect consumers.

The Connecticut Franchise Laws are the only protection afforded to us to protect dealers and consumers from unnecessary manufacturer regulations that when unopposed will increase the cost to our consumers.

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Puerto Rico Native Prepares To Hand-Deliver Goods Collected, Stored In Hartford

Elliot Matos isn’t too proud to have forgotten the days, long ago, when relief workers handed him and his family a box of supplies to make life more bearable in their remote slice of Puerto Rico.

And next week, Matos will finally know what it feels like to be on the other end of those boxes.

Matos, the service manager at Hoffman Audi in East Hartford, is leading an expedition to the island of his birth on Nov. 4, when he and four of his colleagues will personally deliver donated supplies to victims of Hurricane Maria.

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Schaller Auto World puts people first

Ask Art Schaller Jr. about recent business accomplishments, and his answer may surprise you.

"We had our highest attendance ever at the annual Christmas party," he said. It's clear that people are a priority at Schaller Auto World when it comes to clients and staff.

Marketing Director Joanne Pescosolido started out as a greeter at the company 29 years ago. She has worked in sales and finance and can even cover the IT department in a pinch.

"We all help each other when needed," she said.

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As electric car sales accelerate, environmental advocates still worry

In recent years, Hoffman Ford Lincoln general sales manager Billy Genereux has sold and leased from his East Hartford show room an increasing number of plug-in hybrid vehicles, which can run on both electricity and gasoline.

"We've been ordering a lot more the last couple years," said Genereux, noting that Ford C-Max and Fusion Energi have been the most popular brands with customers.

For every electric vehicle, or EV, Hoffman moves, the state pays the dealership $300. For buyers, the incentive is much higher — as much as $3,000 for a qualifying plug-in hybrid or battery electric vehicle, depending on the model, and $5,000 for a fuel-cell electric car. Combined with a federal rebate of as much as $7,500, buyers can reduce the cost of an EV significantly.

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