Putting the Brakes on Air Pollution Could Cause Sticker Shock
Posted December 3, 1998 6:00 a.m. EST
CARY — Having a car inspected costs $20, but failing to have the inspection done on time could cost up to $250 under a law taking effect next month.
Steve Husketh, the owner of an Inspection Station, knows just how often people drive around with expired stickers.
"A lot of people come in here with their inspection sticker expired three, four, five months at a time," Husketh says.
Until now, the state had few ways to make sure drivers kept their inspections up to date. They relied primarily on spot checks by law enforcement officers.
Starting next month, a new computer system will keep track of people with expired inspection stickers. Once a driver is four months overdue, he or she can be fined $250. In addition, it will be impossible to renew the car's registration.
The new system is a result of the clean air act passed by Congress. The system is designed to cut down on air pollution caused by car emissions.
NC DMVCommissioner Janice Faulkner says motorists need to be held responsible for contributing to air pollution. There's no need to identify cars that are in violation, Faulkner says, unless there's a way to stop them.
Faulkner says the new system will put the brakes on violations. "Now we'll know precisely how many we've inspected, how many have met and passed inspection, and we will simply take those that have not passed inspection off the road."
The program only affects the nine most populous counties in North Carolina, including Wake, Durham, and Orange. Other affected counties are in the Greensboro and Charlotte areas.