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STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS
Texas drivers won’t have to take their vehicles into mechanics for annual safety inspections beginning in 2025 after Gov. Greg Abbott signed the bill eliminating the requirement into law earlier this week.
However, residents in the state’s 17 most populous counties will still be required to complete annual emissions inspections, including drivers in Hidalgo and Cameron counties. These inspections are typically done at mechanic shops.
The emissions inspection isn’t a new requirement and remains the same despite the new law dropping the safety inspection. Vehicles manufactured in the last two years or older than 24 years are exempt from this requirement, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
The annual fees all drivers have to pay are still sticking around, too.
Drivers will continue to pay the $7.50 annual fee they were previously on the hook for, but they can pay that fee when they renew their vehicle’s registration. Those registering their vehicles in Texas for the first time will pay a $16.75 fee.
The funds will go toward the Texas mobility fund, the clean air fund and the state’s general revenue.
Those against the change argued it will put Texas drivers and others on the roadways in danger, while supporters have said the inspections are inconvenient and costly.
Texas was one of about a dozen states that required an annual safety inspection. The inspections for passenger vehicles check a myriad of the vehicle’s parts at once, including its exhaust system, lights, tires, brakes and windshield wipers.