Proposal #1 – off course penalty
It probably makes sense to be consistent with the national rules to avoid confusion. Reducing the penalty to 10 seconds would also probably cause most drivers to just continue with their path rather than trying to back up and end up taking additional time which can cause safety issues if another car is coming up and they don’t get moving quickly enough.
Proposal #2 – cracked windshield
I would just recommend that the rule be clear as to what constitutes a “cracked windshield”. I believe in Vermont, if the crack is less than the size of a quarter or is not in the sweep of the windshield wipers, it is legal for the road. Something clearly defined and easy to follow (like that) would be fine and is probably a good idea for safety’s sake. Additionally, having the rule allows all safety stewards to follow the same guideline rather than possibly showing up at one NER event where the crack is allowed and showing up at another NER event and having a different safety steward DQ the car.
I suggest that it is left as it is with no penalty for using TAs. Having a penalty for taking a TA would incentivize drivers to speed to make up time instead of taking a TA. There are many reasons based on safety for taking a TA (getting stuck behind a tractor, cow in the road, etc.) that it would be dangerous and would not look good to the locals if drivers tried to make up time rather than take a TA.