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Senate Bill 1254 — Air quality programs

Senate Bill 1254 — Air quality programs

by
Parrish Miller
February 3, 2022
Parrish Miller
February 3, 2022

Bill Description: Senate Bill 1254 would remove the requirement for vehicle emissions testing in the Treasure Valley and remove statutory language regarding the Treasure Valley Air Quality Council. 

Rating: +2

Amendment Analysis: The Amendment to Senate Bill 1254 does not change the rating or the analysis.

Does it create, expand, or enlarge any agency, board, program, function, or activity of government? Conversely, does it eliminate or curtail the size or scope of government?

Senate Bill 1254 would amend and repeal numerous sections of Idaho Code to eliminate the requirement that vehicles in the Treasure Valley be tested for emissions levels. This change would take effect July 1, 2023.

(+1)

Senate Bill 1254 would also remove statutory language that established the Treasure Valley Air Quality Council. 

(+1)

The major changes proposed by Senate Bill 1254 are positive, but there are some concerning elements as well. The legislation would allow the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to decide whether to recommend to legislators that they create regional air quality councils once certain thresholds are met. This allows for the expansion of government. 

Additionally, new language says DEQ "shall annually review and determine whether the three (3) year design value equal to or above eighty-five percent (85%) of a national ambient air quality standard, as defined by the United States environmental protection agency, is met in certain regions of the state." The state of Idaho should not be deferring to standards set by the EPA. 

(-1)

Does it directly or indirectly create or increase any taxes, fees, or other assessments? Conversely, does it eliminate or reduce any taxes, fees, or other assessments?

The current vehicle emissions testing requirements impose a fee on vehicle owners of approximately $10- $20 per inspection. Repealing the requirement reduces the fees imposed on vehicle owners. 

(+1) 

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