HARRISBURG – Senator Wayne Langerholc (R-35) expressed disappointment today in PennDOT’s refusal to delay an emissions testing equipment upgrade in Cambria County that is expected to cost local auto repair shops thousands of dollars.
PennDOT recently updated the On-Board Diagnostic software that inspection stations are required to purchase in order to complete state-mandated emissions testing. Without the software upgrade – which could cost as much as $10,000 – inspection stations would not be permitted to perform the emissions portion of annual state vehicle inspections.
Langerholc wrote a letter to PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards on August 17 requesting a temporary delay of the requirement for Cambria County while the legislature studies whether Cambria County should be removed from the state’s emission testing requirements. Secretary Richards announced yesterday that the request would be denied.
“PennDOT is essentially asking local businesses to pay thousands of dollars for software they may not even need a year from now,” Langerholc said. “All our local repair shops are asking for is a temporary delay in that expensive mandate until we can determine if they are going to need the software or not. We can’t ask them to make a long-term financial decision like that without giving them all of the relevant information.”
Langerholc has introduced a Senate Resolution that would require the Joint State Government Commission to perform a comprehensive study of the potential impact of removing the emissions testing requirement from Cambria County residents.
“Cambria County’s air quality has consistently met federal air quality standards for more than a decade, so it makes sense to take a closer look at whether the emissions testing requirements are still necessary,” Langerholc said. “It is deeply disappointing that PennDOT is moving forward with thousands of dollars in new mandates before we can even determine whether emissions testing is still needed.”
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