Office of the Governor
State Reaches Agreement With EPA
New Emission Test Will Be
Replaced With Idle Test During Long Waits
The Whitman Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency today reached an agreement that will allow the state to revert to the curb idle test when waiting periods at the state's inspection stations exceed 45 minutes. The action is one of many being implemented to provide an inspection system that meets clean air requirements and at the same time addresses the inconvenience that has resulted from the implementation of the new system.
"It is unfortunate that the implementation of this important program, to date, has led us to this point," said Governor Whitman. "I want to thank the EPA for working with us to find acceptable ways of meeting the clean air standards expected of us and for also acknowledging the fact that motorists in New Jersey cannot be expected to spend an unacceptable amount of time in line waiting for the enhanced test."
"I will continue to ensure that we take all appropriate steps to deal with the obstacles that have surfaced in the past few weeks during the implementation of this program," the Governor continued. "I firmly believe that quality of life for motorists and air quality can go hand-in-hand."
The EPA sent the attached letter to the Commissioner of Transportation James Weinstein earlier today. The letter allows New Jersey to switch to the idle test until June 30, 2000 whenever wait times exceed 45 minutes.
In addition, the state expects Parsons to add additional centralized lanes, hire additional inspectors, and make improvements to the testing apparatus and computer software. Motorists are being provided with financial incentives to use private inspection facilities and the state is providing motorists with additional time to get their vehicles inspected.