HARRISBURG – Sen. Wayne Langerholc, Jr. (R-35) announced today that two pieces of legislation, Senate Bill 561 and 562, passed the Senate Transportation Committee.
Senate Bill 561 would exempt the five newest model year vehicles from the outdated emissions test and remove the gas cap testing requirement for subject vehicles without a gas cap. Senate Bill 562 exempts Blair, Cambria, Lackawanna, Luzerne, Lycoming, Mercer and Westmoreland counties from the vehicle emissions test as they have consistently met air quality standards.
“I have demanded that our outdated emissions laws be changed. There is absolutely no legitimate or justifiable reason that these bills cannot be signed into law,” Langerholc said. “While this may seem like Groundhog Day as we have passed these before, I call upon my colleagues in the House to expeditiously pass and send to the governor for signature. Cambrians and other county residents have been burdened for far too long.”
As the usage of fuel-efficient cars has become more widespread, a vehicle emissions test has proven to be less effective at reducing air pollution. Between 2010-19, there were more than 21 million newer vehicles that passed the emissions test 99.65% of the time. Newer vehicles are consistently passing emissions tests due to newer, more fuel-efficient vehicles on the market.
Senate Resolution of 2017 directed the Joint State Government Commission to evaluate the impacts of removing counties from the vehicle emissions testing program. A product of the resolution identified seven counties as candidates for removal from vehicle emissions testing, as outlined in Senate Bill 562.
Both measures have passed the Senate in previous legislative sessions and have not received House action. Senate Bill 561 and 562 now head to the full Senate for consideration.
Contact: Nolan Ritchie