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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — It will take some more time before drivers in Brunswick County might save time and money on their vehicle inspections. First the federal government has to weigh in.

Back in May a story from The Associated Press reported that the governor signed into law a bill removing 26 counties, including Brunswick, from the list of counties where emissions testing is required. That would cut the number of counties where the testing is needed from 48 to 22.

After WWAY shared the story, we received many questions about when the change would go into effect. Turns out it could be a while.

Today the NC Department of Environment Quality said the state will “likely will exempt an additional 26 counties from annual motor vehicle emissions testing, beginning some time in 2018.” DEQ said North Carolina submitted a “pre-draft” of amendments to the State Implementation Plan (SIP) to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for review in August. Last Thursday, the Division of Air Quality initiated a 30-day public comment period as required for amendments to federally approved SIPs. The state will submit the comments is received to the EPA, which has up to 18 months to review and approve the plan.

The 26 additional counties that would become exempt from annual emissions testing include: Brunswick, Burke, Caldwell, Carteret, Catawba, Chatham, Cleveland, Craven, Edgecombe, Granville, Harnett, Haywood, Henderson, Lenoir, Moore, Nash, Orange, Pitt, Robeson, Rutherford, Stanly, Stokes, Surry, Wayne, Wilkes and Wilson.

All counties will still require the safety inspection.

Some cars are already exempt from emissions testing. Click here to see if your vehicle is among them.


Comment on this Story

  • Jeff

    This whole inspection system is a money-grabbing racket, and has always been. It was made much worse with the institution of the emission inspection, which had been tied to the renewal of plates in North Carolina. The whole inspection needs to be eliminated, especially the emission inspection, which needlessly costs hard-working families money and is based on bad science. For once, our legislators need to do the right thing for their constituents and not just make empty promises.

  • James Last

    15 years ago someone at a “town hall” meeting ask our reps (McComas and Justice-at that time) where did all that money for inspections go, and what good did it do??? Both stumbled over their words and responded “we’ll look into that and find out”…that’s the last I heard of it, go figure!

  • Bryan Leonard

    Please do away with this nonsense. If it doesn’t affect the safe operation of the vehicle on the roadway, then it shouldn’t determine whether is passes inspection or not.

  • guest45

    what we as residents of NC need to do is keep hounding our representatives to do away with this antiquated vehicle inspections, sc, ga, fla and a bunch more states do not do them, there is not 1 good reason for NC to continue them except for it is a BIG MONEY GRAB!! by the state of NC, it has not done nor does it do anything to increase the safety on the highways, Carolyn Justice a state rep did a research on it and was aired on the news years ago on NC state inspections and she was in favor of doing away with them, and she said on the news there was no facts to back up state inspections from a safety standpoint.

    Vehicle inspections cost taxpayers minimums of 2 to 4 hours of their time per vehicle to schedule and have their vehicles inspected, and for no good reason! It is just another of NC’s liberals do good, feel good, MONEY GRAB! stay after your reps to do away with it!

    • Bryan Leonard

      This is true. Even AAA could not find any statistical evidence that proved that vehicle inspections reduced accidents. But There was and still is a large Mechanic and Dealership lobby that has been keeping this going for years, but it looks like it could be coming to an end finally.

    • Dan Brown

      You sound so ignorant

      • guest45

        and you sound like someone who makes money off this money grabbing outdated scheme.

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