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April 2008


I would like to extend my deepest apology to the Members for the recent miss communication regarding the March General meeting.

Our next meeting is scheduled for April 16, 2008 and I hope to see you all there.

The following week, April 23 is the Annual Society Expo so if you have not booked you table, contact Cheech or Carl as soon as possible.

One again I would like to apologize for last month’s confusion.



I’m sorry for the confusion and cancellation of the March meeting. There was a scheduling mix up between us and the catering hall. We will be at the Immaculate Conception Center for the April meeting on Wednesday, April 16th.

The EXPO is here! I hope all the tickets that I sent out you got distributed. We should have a great turn out. There’s still time to get an exhibit table if you haven’t done so. Please call me at (718) 388-4026 to reserve your table.


We are no longer accepting Bylaw change proposals. Proposals that were submitted will be read at the April meeting and mailed to all eligible voting Members by May 1.

Excerpts from our Constitution and Bylaws:
Article IX

1. The full voting powers shall be vested in the Member grade of the Society. The Associate grade Member shall have (1) one vote at a regular meeting only, but shall have no vote at the May meeting or in the election of Officers of the Society. The Apprentice Fleet Supervisor shall have no vote at any meeting or in the election of Officers of the Society, as so defined by the Bylaws VI Elections, par. #6. (Amended 5/19/93)

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We have another addition to our Internet Directory from Motive Engines. Please check them out at

Our present Membership is comprised of:
Members 112
Life Members 17
Editorial Members 0
Associate Members 43
Honorary Members 3
Original Equipment Manufacturer 3
Apprentice Fleet Supervisors 0
Student Members 18
Total Membership 195

Current CONSECUTIVE attendance records are:
Honorary Member Bill Misita, Retired – 99, 9/92 – 2/05
Member Robert Lagnese, Farmingdale University – 88, 1/97 –
Member George Pastor, H. John Davis, Inc. – 70, 5/94 – 5/03
Member Carl Orza, Advanced Fleet Maintenance – 70, 3/97 – 2/06
Life Member Nuno Tardo, Universal Ford – 63, 3/89 – 1/97
Member John Cigna, Retired – 50, 2/94 – 3/00
Life Member Nuno Tardo, Retired – 48, 1/02 –1/07
Member Robert Spiotto, Frank Siviglia & Co., Inc. – 47, 11/01 –9/07
Member Pat De Martino, Con Edison – 44, 10/90 – 2/96
Member Leonard Huffmire, Atlantic Express Inc. – 41, 11/02 –


Bronx Community College Automotive Program Receives National Certification
The automotive training program at Bronx Community College of The City University of New York has received certification by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) and The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). To achieve this coveted recognition, the program underwent rigorous evaluation in areas such as instruction, facilities and equipment. The certification in engine performance, electrical and electronic systems, and suspension and brakes is a great boost for BCC’s automotive program that has gone through significant change in recent years.

BCC’s designation to lead CUNY’s sustainability efforts provided the opportunity to refocus the College’s Automotive Technology Program, in existence for nearly 15 years. Over the last 17 months, Clement Drummond a 35-year automotive industry veteran, has worked to create a leading-edge training program that includes state-of-the-art labs, equipment and teaching facilities; and a comprehensive curriculum for associate in applied sciences degree (A.A.S.), and one-year automotive technician certificate program. Additional focus on alternative fuel and hybrid cars also expands the scope of the program’s offerings.

In collaboration with the Center for Sustainable Energy and the Office of Institutional Advancement, the BCC automotive program has received three grants in support of curriculum updates as well as facilities and equipment upgrades totaling $1.2 million. “This is great news for automotive-minded young people,” said Donald Seyfer, NATEF Chair. “Because this program increases cooperation between local education and industry leaders, it gives added assurance that Bronx Community College’s graduates will be employable entry-level technicians. As a result of the quality education provided by Bronx Community College, the motoring public will benefit since better repair technicians will join the work force.” Upon completion of the evaluation, NATEF recommended that Bronx Community College be certified by (ASE), a national non-profit organization that tests and certifies repair technicians, in addition to certifying automotive training programs.

“During the past year, we have worked closely with NATEF to make certain that our program would meet strict industry standards, and now we are delighted to join the ranks of the ASE-certified training programs,” shares Drummond. “Students will be assured of a quality education, and shop owners will be assured of getting quality service technicians.”

Mark Schienberg, president of the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association (GNYADA) said, “First, I’d like to congratulate the College for the major achievement of gaining NATEF Certification. “As president of GNYADA – an organization that represents over 600 franchised new car dealers in metro New York – I can tell you that we are crying-out for well-trained enthusiastic, young people. There are literally hundreds of entry-level positions available in dealerships in our area. Nationally, there is a shortage of 100,000 technicians.” continued Schienberg. “This is a profession that is both exciting and lucrative. As a matter of fact, there are master technicians right here in our area earning over $100,000 a year, doing what they love to do,” he concluded.

Over 150 men and women are currently enrolled in BCC’s automotive program. For additional information, students can call Clement Drummond at (718) 289-5213.


We need your help!!! Journal Ad commitments for this years Journal honoring our Member of the Year, Mike Cordiello are at a stand-still. Although, we of the Journal Ad Committee realize that many of our Members wait until November to make a commitment and upgrade their Journal Ad and/or submit Vendor Ads, may I remind you that it is never to early to submit your commitment. Mike Cordiello, our most worthy honoree has given countless hours of his time to this great Society and it is our time to show him that we are grateful for his efforts. So please, take the time to fill out a Journal Ad Form that has been included in this Newsletter and mail it in today.

Thanking you once again for your anticipated cooperation and generosity.


Transportation Dept. Proposes New Vehicle Roof-Strength Testing
The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued a modification of its proposed new roof crush standard, requesting public input on whether both sides of a vehicle roof should be tested to meet minimum forces.

If adopted, the two-sided testing would require manufacturers to design vehicle roofs that withstand at least 2.5 times the weight of the vehicle on both sides of the roof as an alternative to testing just one side. A proposal, announced in August 2005, would require automakers to build vehicle roofs to withstand a force equal to 2.5 times the vehicle weight, as applied to only one side. The proposed roof strengthening would apply to vehicles weighing up to 10,000 pounds.

"Rollover crashes are among the most violent events on America's highways, and although they constitute a relatively small number of overall crashes, they account for a disproportionate number of deaths --- approximately 10,000 a year," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters. "This proposal will build on our efforts to improve vehicle safety, will save lives and will protect people from injury."

Peters noted that the amended roof crush proposal is part of an effort to reduce rollover fatalities and injuries, and includes mandating new technologies such as electronic stability control, which can save an estimated 9,600 lives a year, as well as stronger door locks. She also noted that using seat belts remains the most effective way to prevent fatalities and injuries in all types of crashes, including rollovers.

Nicole Nason, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said that the earlier roof crush proposal was being amended because research conducted since August of 2005 indicates that the double-sided testing procedure is now a viable alternative approach to improve vehicle roof strength.

"We want the benefit of public comments on whether the one-sided or double-sided procedure would be the wisest approach to save lives and protect people from serious injury due to contact with collapsed roofs," Nason said. She noted that NHTSA was releasing all the testing the agency has done since August 2005, including a series of one- and two-sided test results, as part of the supplemental proposal.

Nason added that the agency would seek comment over the coming month and a half before making a final decision. She also said that the agency plans to issue a final rule by this summer.

Ford Recalling More than 180,000 SUVs, Vans
Ford Motor Co. is recalling more than 180,000 sport utility vehicles and vans in two separate recalls to repair interior door handles and faulty fuel hoses.

One recall involves nearly 124,000 Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator SUVs from the 2007-2008 model years. Ford said the spring system in the inside door handles could break. In addition, the problem could prevent the door handles from returning to a closed position, but the latches work properly, Ford spokesman Wes Sherwood told the AP. But in a side crash, there could be a risk of the door latch opening because of the problems.

Sherwood added there have been no reports of injuries or accidents tied to the door handle problem.

Dealers will replace the interior handle spring on side doors of 2007-2008 Expedition and Navigator vehicles built from March 3, 2006 through Aug. 9, 2007.

The second recall involves more than 57,000 2006-2007 E-150, E-250 and E-350 vans, and 2007 Expedition and Navigator SUVs with 5.4-liter engines. The engine's fuel rail crossover hose, which connects the fuel rails, could crack and leak fuel, creating a fire risk. However, there have been no reports of fires, injuries or crashes. Dealers will replace the fuel rail assembly, Sherwood said.

Ford Recalls 225,000 Vehicles Previously Recalled
Ford Motor Co. is recalling about 225,000 vehicles that were already repaired as part of an earlier recall to address concerns about a cruise control deactivation switch, the Detroit News reported.

The new recall will affect just a fraction of the approximately 10 million vehicles that have been recalled since 1999 as a result of the cruise control switch problem.

Ford had addressed the cruise control switch problem by installing new wiring harnesses in the recalled vehicles. But Ford recently discovered that some of those wiring harnesses may be defective. No accidents or injuries have been linked to this problem, however.

The original recall was prompted by engine fires linked to the cruise control systems in trucks, SUVs and vans. The vehicles in the new recall include 185,000 E-Series vans with model years ranging from 1992 to 2003. Other vehicles affected include 1993-95 Ford Taurus SHO; 1992-98 Ford Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis; 1992-95 Lincoln Town Car; 1993 Ford Bronco; 1993 gas powered Ford Super Duty; and 1995-97 gas-powered Ford Super Duty stripped chassis.

Ford told the AP that not all vehicles in those model years had the faulty wiring harness installed. The company will contact affected owners.

GM to Recall Chevrolet HHR Wagons
General Motors will be recalling 181,516 Chevrolet HHR wagons because some of the vehicles don't meet government standards for protecting occupants from head injury in a crash, CNN reported.

GM said that Chevy HHRs not equipped with optional roof rail-mounted airbags and sold between 2006 and 2008 have failed the company's own side-impact tests. Roof rail-mounted airbags are designed to reduce the risk of head injury during a side-impact collision.

The recall will start in late March, when the parts become available. Dealers will install a piece of energy-absorbing plastic to the headliner trim.

In 2007, about 99,000 Chevy Cobalt sedans were recalled for a similar problem.

IRS Lists Tax Breaks for 2007 Hybrid Purchases
Here are the tax credits issued for hybrids purchased in 2007, according to the IRS:
• Chevrolet Silverado 2WD Hybrid Pickup Truck -- $250
• Chevrolet Silverado 4WD Hybrid Pickup Truck -- $650
• Ford Escape Hybrid 2WD -- $2,600
• Ford Escape Hybrid 4WD -- $1,950
• GMC Sierra 2WD Hybrid Pickup Truck -- $250
• GMC Sierra 4WD Hybrid Pickup Truck -- $650
• Honda Accord Hybrid AT -- $1,300
• Honda Accord Hybrid Navi AT -- $1,300
• Honda Civic Hybrid CVT -- $2,100
• Lexus* GS450h -- If bought by March 31: $775; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $387.50
• Lexus* RX 400h 4WD -- If bought by March 31: $1,100; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $550
• Lexus* RX 400h 2WD -- If bought by March 31: $1,100; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $550
• Mercury Mariner Hybrid 4WD -- $1,950
• Nissan Altima Hybrid -- $2,350
• Saturn Aura -- $1,300
• Saturn Vue Green Line -- $650
• Toyota* Camry Hybrid -- If bought by March 31: $1,300; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $650
• Toyota* Prius -- If bought by March 31: $1,575; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $787.50
• Toyota* Highlander Hybrid 2WD -- If bought by March 31: $1,300; if bought April 1- Sept. 30: $650
Toyota* Highlander Hybrid 4WD -- If bought by March 31: $1,300; if bought April 1-Sept. 30: $650


We still are looking for potential Members and have not received many candidates in the last few months. Please we need you help in recommending potential candidates to increase our Membership and support the Society.

I encourage all members to speak to their co- workers, friends, customers and anyone in the industry who may benefit from joining the Society. If anyone is interested they can contact me for a membership application.

Also, we are looking for recommendations for Member of the Month. If you know of anyone who has showed outstanding performance in the Industry you should send their name to me or Richard Chan.

Remember being a member is important, but we must attend meetings to support the Society.

Members on the move:
Congratulations to Member Jack Lawson on his promotion to Executive Director of Fleet Services for the New York Dept. of Transportation.


The cocktail hour for the April program to be sponsored by Brigade Electronics. The speaker will be Scott Vandeweghe regional manager for Brigade Electronics. The program will be on New York City noise ordinances and their product line.

The May program will be presented by Commercial Vehicle Consultants

The September program will be the rescheduled program by Prestolite Electric from the March meeting that was canceled.


I received a letter from Life Member Joe Valenti and he states that he and Joan are well. They just spent ten days in Punta Cana in January with beautiful weather and the casino paid off. They will be leaving for Florida on Feb. 26th and be back on Apr. 7th. They have a condo in New Smyrna and his children are giving him a dinner for his 80th birthday.


Just in case you missed last month’s announcement, the individual award for the Society of Fleet Supervisors. Inc. Scholarship is $2000.00 and there are eight scholarships available. Please send in your applications as soon as possible so I can start the eligibility process. Please remember that there is a meeting attendance requirement of 15 meetings in a three year period prior to the November meeting that must be met to be eligible. If you are not sure where you stand with your eligibility, please contact Member Richard Chan and he will let you know.


The Kiddy Picnic has been set for Sunday, June 1st. We will be at the Peach/Pear sections in parking lot 11 at Eisenhower Park, East Meadow, NY. I already received reservations and if you are going to attend with your children, please get your reservations in early. We need a head count on all the attendees so we can purchase the toys appropriately. Please use the application that was in last month’s Newsletter or go on the Society’s web site to down load an application. We are also accepting any and all donations for toys at this time.


Our condolences and deepest sympathy go out to Member John Costantin on the passing of his Mother-in-Law who passed away on March 17, 2008 at the age of 100.

Get well and speedy recovery wishes go out to Member John Collura who is recovering from a bout with pneumonia.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY wishes for our following Members and their spouses:
05/04 Kerry Blumenthal
05/04 Michael Natoli
05/11 Phillip Torres
05/12 Stanley Clark
05/12 Richard Yopp
05/14 Brian Marksohn
05/15 Douglas Calder
05/15 Joseph Carpenter
05/15 Juan Nunez
051/6 Ronald Birnbaum
05/20 Mitchell Clark
05/24 Florence Lagnese (Robert)
05/25 Pat De Martino
05/25 Steve Justice
05/27 Robert Lagnese
05/28 Irene Tardo (Nuno)



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