Tesla’s Greenwich location lawsuit filed by CARA has been dismissed by a Superior Court judge
In May 2016, the Connecticut Automotive Retailers Association (CARA) filed a lawsuit against Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) and the Planning and Zoning Board of Appeals (PZBA) of the Town of Greenwich, CT for allowing the automaker to operate a showroom which allegedly violated zoning regulations. However, a judge at the Superior Court dismissed CARA’s lawsuit last week, according to Stamford Advocate.
Tesla, conversely, has also made it clear that the Greenwich location, the first brick-and-mortar presence in the state, is not a store or a dealership; instead it is an educational gallery to spread awareness about EVs and its technologies.
Tesla said in a statement to Stamford Advocate:
“We agree with the decision of the judge and encourage legislators to contemplate the benefits Tesla can bring the state, if allowed.”
The company also jeered on the car dealers’ unsuccessful attempts to “impair consumer choice, limit economic growth and negatively impact public health.” It plans to continue educating the Connecticuters on the advantage of sustainable energy, which it sees as a “permanent solution.”
The latest ruling spurs the continuous legislative battle between Tesla and CARA, while the automaker refuses to bend down to the state’s law which still does not allow it to directly sell its vehicles to customers.
CARA President Jim Fleming downplayed the importance of the ruling, as it believes there are other ways to ensure that Tesla follows the franchise dealership system, which creates healthy competition and sustains “good paying locals jobs” and supports consumer interests in the state.
Connecticut has remained a battleground state for Tesla over the last few years where it faces tough opposition from car dealers and support from legislators.
The infamous ‘Tesla bill’ which would have given an exception to the young, EV maker to operate through its business model, was killed in the Senate in 2015 and once again in 2016. Last year’s proposed bill would have allowed the company to operate to stores in Connecticut, part from the existing service center in Milford, compared to three retail locations in the preceding year’s proposal.
However, Tesla is gearing up to create commotion for lawmakers once again this year, as Senate Majority Leader, Bob Duff (D-Norwalk), who introduced the proposal last year believes that another “Tesla bill is coming back this year.”