Clean air compliance law adopted in Texas

| 7/16/2003

Gov. Rick Perry has signed legislation to help bring Texas into federal clean air compliance.

The new law, combined with current funding, is expected to raise about $640 million over the next four years for the Texas Emissions Reduction Program, which targets diesel emissions.

HB1365 awards grants to speed up business’ voluntary retirement of older, higher-polluting diesel equipment, and it also pays for research into clean-air technologies.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has required the Lone Star State to reduce its emissions by 16.3 tons a day in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and 18.9 tons a day in the Houston area by 2007, the Dallas Morning News reportedly recently.

If those areas fail to meet the emissions standards, the state could lose millions of dollars in federal highway funds.

The new law raises the current $13 vehicle title transfer fee to $33 in areas of the state that don’t meet clean-air standards or those that barely avoid the cut. The fee would increase to $28 for the rest of the state.

It also increases the surcharge on the sale or lease of off-road diesel equipment from 1 percent to 2 percent.