Report | CALPIRG Education Fun | Consumer Protection

CarMax Sales Practices Endangers Lives in California

California has adopted some of the most effective laws in the nation aimed at reducing vehicle crashes, including many that focus on driver behavior. In addition, the state licenses and regulates auto dealers who sell motor vehicles to the public, and has adopted laws to ensure that the cars they sell are safe for operation on the roads. Car buyers have a reasonable expectation that the cars they purchase from licensed, regulated dealers are safe to drive. Dealers who violate those laws face sanctions ranging from fines and civil penalties to punitive damages and possible suspension or loss of their license to do business in the state.

Despite those laws, this report finds that CarMax, the nation’s largest retailer of used cars, is selling many unsafe, unrepaired recalled vehicles in California that are hazardous not only to the people who buy CarMax cars, but also to their families, other motorists, bike riders, and pedestrians.

CALPIRG Education Fund and the Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety (CARS) Foundation reached this conclusion based on research into CarMax’s sales practices in California, compiling data from two locations, one in Southern California (Ox- nard), and the other in Northern California (South Sacramento). 

Report | Student PIRGs | Textbooks

Open Textbooks: The Billion Dollar Solution

New report shows alternative textbook model could save students a billion dollars.

Report | CALPIRG | Democracy

The Cost of Running for US Senate in CA

To run for a U.S. Senate seat in California, a viable candidate needs to raise a huge war chest of funds. Over the last four campaign cycles, the California U.S. Senate incumbents and their top challengers have each raised an average of $8.8 million from individual donors for their races. The competition will likely be even greater in 2016, with the retirement of Sen. Barbara Boxer, and thus candidates will have to raise even more money.

Report | CALPIRG Education Fund | New Voters Project

The Voting Intentions and Opinions of Students

While the youth vote has played a large and much-discussed role in recent elections, registration and turnout rates for young voters between the ages 18-24 still lag far behind older voters. 

In the 2012 election, 62.2% of eligible young people between 18-24 years old were registered, and only half of them (50.8%) turned out to vote. i 

The numbers were even lower in the last midterm. In the 2010 election cycle only 49.43% of eligible young people between 18-24 years old were registered to vote.ii 

Young voters face more barriers to registration and turnout than older voters: Many of them are becoming eligible for the first time, they move frequently for school or economic reasons, and they are new to the ins and outs of the electoral process. 


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