Councilman Seeks Temporary Emissions Exemption for Memphians

Councilman Seeks Temporary Emissions Exemption for Memphians

Memphis City Council jumped the first hurdle when it comes to Memphians getting out of emissions inspections.
MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Memphis City Council jumped the first hurdle when it comes to Memphians getting out of emissions inspections. Councilman Lee Harris is trying to pass an ordinance that will exempt Memphis drivers from getting inspected for two years. This comes at a crucial time since the city will stop funding inspections and the state is planning to take over in June.

Tuesday, the ordinance passed an executive session. It still has to be voted on 3 more times in the full council. If it passes, this means Memphis drivers do not need to get emissions testing until there's a countywide program. Memphis drivers say it's all for one and one for all when it comes to emissions inspections.

"It's fair, it's definitely fair,” said Memphis driver Sony Miller.

City funding for inspections will stop June 30th. It'll be up to Shelby County to take over. If not, the state will, but there's still no clear plan on what will happen in a month.

"We don't know for sure because the state hasn't given us a formal plan yet,” said Councilman Harris.

That's why Harris came up with an ordinance that will address these issues and give Memphians some relief.

"It says that if the state doesn't take it over, there's not a county wide emissions program, if those things don't happen then don't worry about it. Memphians are out,” said Harris. “It's just unfair that Memphians have to have this regulatory burden on their own."

The ordinance says Memphians don't have to get their cars inspected for at least 2 years or until there's a county-wide emissions program. Drivers are excited about not having to go through the inspection line, at least for a while.

"It's a hassle because when you go the lines are so long and you don't know when to go and we got multiple things going on in our lives, we don't have time to sit in line,” said another Memphis driver, Malinda Johnson.

The ordinance needs to pass three readings before it goes into effect. The first reading is scheduled on June 4.
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