Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell supports ending emissions testing

State's top environment official cautions getting rid of program

An employee types in information to complete an emissions test at the Emissions Testing Center on Riverfront Parkway.

NASHVILLE - Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell, R-Nashville, on Thursday threw her support behind an effort by two state lawmakers to end vehicle emissions testing in Hamilton and five other counties, including her home in Davidson County.

Also signing onto the bill, sponsored by Rep. Mike Carter, R-Ooltewah, and Sen. Bo Watson, R-Hixson, was Rep. JoAnne Favors, D-Chattanooga, who cited the urging of constituents and friends.

Meanwhile, Watson tweeted that Senate Republican Caucus Chairman Bill Ketron, R-Murfreesboro, who represents Rutherford County, also among the six counties, is backing the legislation, too.

Carter and Watson introduced the legislation, saying they believe the testing is no longer needed because the entire state now complies with the Environmental Protection Agency's air quality health standards on particle pollution, as well as smog.