Memphis Could Lose Millions if Vehicle Inspections End

Memphis Could Lose Millions if Vehicle Inspections End

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton warned the city could lose hundreds of millions of dollars in highway money if inspections don't continue.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - Memphis got out of the car inspection business this year. And now, the city council is ready to get Memphis drivers exempted from car inspections for the next two years.

"I don't know where this is going to land but I think that for the environment's sake and for our own being able to breathe we need our vehicles inspected," said concerned citizen Terry Starr.

At the end of June, the city of Memphis will no longer run the Motor Vehicle Inspection program.

"At this point there's no money in the city budget and there are no plans on the city's part right now to do any automobile admissions testing," said George Little.

Chief Administrative Officer George Little says the city was hoping the county would take over the program because they believe air quality is a county-wide issue. County Mayor Mark Luttrell said just because Memphis can't afford inspections, it's not a county problem.

A plan for a state takeover also hit a road block. The state's saying it's at least 18-19 months out before they can do it. A memo by Memphis Mayor A C Wharton warned the city could lose hundreds of millions of dollars in highway money if inspections don't continue.

"We still have certain obligations, if you will, as far as air quality," said Little.

The bigger hit could be to the economy; the EPA may prevent new business from coming to the city.

"We don't really want to go there because we don't want to hurt business in this city," said George Little.

The EPA told localmemphis.com it is still on the fence when it comes to possible sanctions. Most drivers we talked to only have one thing in mind.

"I think it's good that it's going away. I don't like going and waiting in the long line," said Cole Glover.

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