Home Page About Us Contribute




Escort, Inc.



Tweets by @CrittendenAuto






By accessing/using The Crittenden Automotive Library/CarsAndRacingStuff.com, you signify your agreement with the Terms of Use on our Legal Information page. Our Privacy Policy is also available there.

Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Texas; Revision to the State Implementation Plan Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance Programs

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Texas; Revision to the State Implementation Plan Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance Programs

Jane N. Saginaw
Environmental Protection Agency
May 18, 1994


[Federal Register Volume 59, Number 95 (Wednesday, May 18, 1994)]
[Unknown Section]
[Page 0]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 94-12145]


[[Page Unknown]]

[Federal Register: May 18, 1994]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------


ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
40 CFR Part 52

[TX-39-1-6272; FRL-4886-2]

 

Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; 
Texas; Revision to the State Implementation Plan Vehicle Inspection and 
Maintenance Programs

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

ACTION: Proposed rulemaking.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: In this action, the EPA is proposing to approve the Texas 
Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) Inspection and 
Maintenance (I/M) State Implementation Plan (SIP), which includes a SIP 
narrative entitled ``Revisions to the State Implementation Plan (SIP) 
for the Control of Ozone Air Pollution-Inspection/Maintenance SIP for 
Dallas/Fort Worth, El Paso, Beaumont/Port Arthur, and Houston/Galveston 
Ozone Nonattainment Areas,'' and Regulation IV, 31 TAC 114.3, entitled 
``Vehicle Emissions Inspection and Maintenance Program,'' as a revision 
to the Texas SIP for ozone. On November 12, 1993, and on March 9, 1994, 
Texas submitted SIP revision requests to the EPA to satisfy the 
requirements of sections 182(b)(4) and 182(c)(3) of the Clean Air Act, 
as amended in 1990 and Federal I/M rule 40 CFR part 51, subpart S. 
These SIP revisions will require vehicle owners to comply with the 
Texas I/M program in the four Texas ozone nonattainment areas 
classified as moderate or worse. This revision applies to the Texas 
counties of Brazoria, Chambers, Collin, Dallas, Denton, El Paso, Fort 
Bend, Galveston, Harris, Jefferson, Liberty, Montgomery, Orange, 
Tarrant, and Waller.
DATES: Comments on this proposed action must be received in writing on 
or before June 17, 1994.

ADDRESSES: Written comments should be sent to Mr. Tom Diggs at USEPA 
Region 6, (6T-AP), 1445 Ross Avenue, suite 700, Dallas, Texas 75202-
2733. The State submittal and the technical support document (TSD) 
prepared by the EPA are available for public review at the above 
address and at the TNRCC, Mobile Source Division, I/M Section, P.O. Box 
13087, Austin, Texas 78711-3087. Interested persons wanting to examine 
these documents should make an appointment with the appropriate office 
at least 24 hours before the visiting day.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. James F. Davis, at(214) 655-7584.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Clean Air Act Requirements

    The Clean Air Act, as amended in 1990 (CAA or Act), requires States 
to make changes to improve existing I/M programs or implement new ones. 
Section 182(a)(2)(B) required any ozone nonattainment area which has 
been classified as ``marginal'' (pursuant to section 181(a) of the CAA) 
or worse with an existing I/M program that was part of a SIP, or any 
area that was required by the 1977 Amendments to the CAA to have an I/M 
program, to immediately submit a SIP revision to bring the program up 
to the level required in past EPA guidance or to what had been 
committed to previously in the SIP, whichever was more stringent. All 
carbon monoxide nonattainment areas were also subject to this 
requirement to improve existing or previously required programs to this 
level. In addition, all ozone nonattainment areas classified as 
moderate or worse must implement a basic or an enhanced I/M program 
depending upon its classification, regardless of previous requirements.
    In addition, Congress directed the EPA in section 182(a)(2)(B) to 
publish updated guidance for State I/M programs, taking into 
consideration findings of the Administrator's audits and investigations 
of these programs. The States were to incorporate this guidance into 
the SIP for all areas required by the CAA to have an I/M program. Ozone 
nonattainment areas classified as ``serious'' or worse with populations 
of 200,000 or more, and CO nonattainment areas with design values above 
12.7 parts per million (ppm.) and populations of 200,000 or more, and 
metropolitan statistical areas with populations of 100,000 or more in 
the northeast ozone transport region were required to meet EPA guidance 
for enhanced I/M programs.
    The EPA has designated four areas as ozone nonattainment in the 
State of Texas. The Houston/Galveston ozone nonattainment area is 
classified as severe and contains the following eight counties: 
Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, 
and Waller. The Beaumont/Port Arthur ozone nonattainment area is 
classified as serious and contains the following three counties: 
Hardin, Jefferson, and Orange. The 1980 population of the Beaumont/Port 
Arthur area was less than 200,000. The El Paso ozone nonattainment area 
is classified as serious and contains the county of El Paso. The 
Dallas/Fort Worth ozone nonattainment area is classified as moderate 
and contains the following four counties: Collin, Dallas, Denton, and 
Tarrant. The designations for ozone were published in the Federal 
Register (FR) on November 6, 1991, and November 30, 1992, and have been 
codified in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). See 56 FR 56694 
(November 6, 1991) and 57 FR 56762 (November 30, 1992), codified at 40 
CFR 81.300-81.437. In addition, a segment of El Paso Texas has been 
designated nonattainment for carbon monoxide (CO) and classified as 
moderate with a design value below 12.7 ppm., under sections 
107(d)(4)(A) and 186(a) of the CAA. See 56 FR 56694 (November 6, 1991) 
and 57 FR 13498 and 13529 (April 16, 1992). Based on these 
nonattainment designations and populations, basic I/M programs are 
required in the Beaumont/Port Arthur and Dallas/Fort Worth urbanized 
areas, while enhanced I/M programs are required in the El Paso and 
Houston/Galveston urbanized areas.
    By this action, the EPA is proposing to approve this submittal. The 
EPA has reviewed the State submittal against the statutory requirements 
and for consistency with the EPA regulations. A summary of the EPA's 
analysis is provided below. In addition, more detailed support of 
approving the State submittal is contained in a TSD, dated March 23, 
1994, which is available from the Region 6 Office, listed above.

I/M Regulation General SIP Submittal Requirements

    On November 5, 1992 (57 FR 52950), the EPA published a final 
regulation establishing the I/M requirements, pursuant to section 182 
and 187 of the CAA. The I/M regulation was codified at 40 CFR part 51, 
subpart S, and requires States to submit an I/M SIP revision which 
includes all necessary legal authority and the items specified in 40 
CFR 51.372 (a)(1) through (a)(8) by November 15, 1993. The State has 
met these requirements.

State Submittal

    On November 12, 1993, and on March 9, 1994, the State of Texas 
submitted its I/M SIP for its four nonattainment areas. Public hearings 
for the submittal were held on August 23, 24, 25, and 26, 1993, for the 
November 12, 1993, SIP submittal, and on December 16, 1993, for the 
March 9, 1994, SIP submittal. The EPA submitted comments for these 
hearings on August 27, 1993, and on December 21, 1993, respectively. 
The EPA's primary comments concerned the State's proposed use of a 
renewable economic hardship waiver and the demonstration of the 
enhanced performance standard in Houston/Galveston and El Paso. The 
State has adequately responded to these concerns.
    The submittals provide for the implementation of basic I/M programs 
in the Dallas/Fort Worth and Beaumont/Port Arthur areas beginning on 
July 1, 1994, and for enhanced I/M programs in Houston/Galveston and El 
Paso beginning on January 1, 1995. Texas will be implementing biennial, 
test only I/M programs which meet the requirements of the EPA's 
performance standard and other requirements contained in the Federal I/
M rule in the applicable nonattainment counties. Testing will be 
overseen by the TNRCC and two managing I/M contractors who will be 
subcontracting actual testing to operating contractors. Other aspects 
of the Texas I/M program include: Testing of 1968 and later light duty 
vehicles and trucks and heavy duty trucks, evaporative emission testing 
for 1971 and later model year vehicles, a test fee to ensure the State 
has adequate resources to implement the program, enforcement by 
registration denial and vehicle inspection stickers, a repair 
effectiveness program, contractual requirements for testing 
convenience, quality assurance, data collection, minimum expenditure 
time extension and hardship waivers, reporting, test equipment and test 
procedure specifications, public information and consumer protection, 
and inspector training and certification and penalties against 
inspector incompetence. In addition, the enhanced I/M programs will 
include: IM240 testing for newer vehicles (the Dallas/Fort Worth basic 
I/M program will also include IM240 testing), an on-road testing 
program, and emission recall enforcement. An analysis of how the Texas 
I/M program meets the Federal SIP requirements by section of the 
Federal I/M rule is provided below.

A. Applicability

    The SIP needs to describe the applicable areas in detail and, 
consistent with 40 CFR 51.372, needs to include the legal authority or 
rules necessary to establish program boundaries.
    The Texas I/M regulations specify that I/M programs be implemented 
in the counties as described above. Basic I/M programs are to be 
implemented in the Dallas/Fort Worth and Beaumont/Port Arthur areas 
while enhanced I/M programs are to be implemented in the Houston/
Galveston and El Paso areas.

B. Enhanced and Basic I/M Performance Standard

    The I/M programs provided for in the SIP are required to meet a 
performance standard, either basic or enhanced as applicable, for the 
pollutants that caused the affected area to come under I/M 
requirements. The performance standard sets an emission reduction 
target that must be met by a program in order for the SIP to be 
approvable. The SIP must also provide that the program will meet the 
performance standard in actual operation, with provisions for 
appropriate adjustments if the standard is not met.
    The State has submitted a modeling demonstration using the EPA 
computer model MOBILE5a showing that the enhanced performance standard 
is met in the Houston/Galveston area. The State has also submitted 
modeling for the basic I/M areas of Dallas/Fort Worth and Beaumont/Port 
Arthur demonstrating that these programs meet the EPA's performance 
standard as well.

C. Network Type and Program Evaluation

    The SIP needs to include a description of the network to be 
employed, the required legal authority, and in the case of areas making 
claims for case by case equivalency, the required demonstration. Also, 
for enhanced I/M areas, the SIP needs to include a description of the 
evaluation schedule and protocol, the sampling methodology, the data 
collection and analysis system, the resources and personnel for 
evaluation, and related details of the evaluation program, and the 
legal authority enabling the evaluation program.
    The Texas program has chosen to implement a test only I/M network 
program design which will utilize managing and operating contractors to 
implement the inspection portion of the program.The State has chosen 
not to make a demonstration for case by case equivalency for a 
different network design. The TNRCC describes and commits, in its SIP 
narrative, to institute a continuous ongoing evaluation program 
consistent with the Federal I/M rule. The results of the evaluation 
program will be reported to the EPA on a biennial basis. Legal 
authority which is contained in the Texas Health and Safety Code 
sections 382.037-382.039 (Vernon 1944), authorizes the TNRCC to 
implement this contractor operated test only program and conduct the 
program evaluation.

D. Adequate Tools and Resources

    The SIP needs to include a description of the resources that will 
be used for program operation, and discuss how the performance standard 
will be met, which includes: (1) A detailed budget plan which describes 
the source of funds for personnel, program administration, program 
enforcement, purchase of necessary equipment (such as vehicles for 
undercover audits), and any other requirements discussed throughout, 
for the period prior to the next biennial self-evaluation required in 
Federal I/M rule, (2) a description of personnel resources, the number 
of personnel dedicated to overt and covert auditing, data analysis, 
program administration, enforcement, and other necessary functions and 
the training attendant to each function.
    The TNRCC Chapter of the 1993 Appropriations Bill authorizes the 
TNRCC to collect a fee from the I/M contractors to cover the costs of 
administrating, overseeing, and enforcing the I/M program which will be 
no less than 1.25 dollars per paid vehicle inspection. The SIP 
narrative also describes the budget, staffing support, and equipment 
needed to implement the program.The State expects to dedicate a 
staffing level of 32 full time equivalent employees to support the 
program.

E. Test Frequency and Convenience

    The SIP needs to include the test schedule in detail including the 
test year selection scheme if testing is other than annual. Also, the 
SIP needs to include the legal authority necessary to implement and 
enforce the test frequency requirement and explain how the test 
frequency will be integrated with the enforcement process. In addition, 
in enhanced I/M programs, the SIP needs to demonstrate that the network 
of stations providing test services is sufficient to insure short 
waiting times to get a test and short driving distances.
    The Texas SIP commits to require biennial inspections for all 
subject motor vehicles that are at least one year old. The inspections 
will be conducted on odd or even years corresponding to the model year 
of the vehicle and timed with the registration process which is 
explained in the SIP. The authority for the enforcement of the testing 
frequency is contained in the Texas I/M rule. Short waiting times and 
short driving distances relating to network design are addressed in the 
contracts between the State and its managing contractors. The State is 
contractually requiring a 15 minute average waiting time and driving 
distances of 80% of the vehicle population located within five miles of 
the inspection facility, 95% of the vehicle population located within 
twelve miles of the inspection facility, and 99% of the vehicle 
population located within 20 miles of the inspection facility.

F. Vehicle Coverage

    The SIP needs to include a detailed description of the number and 
types of vehicles to be covered by the program, and a plan for how 
those vehicles are to be identified, including vehicles that are 
routinely operated in the area but may not be registered in the area. 
Also, the SIP needs to include a description of any special exemptions 
which will be granted by the program, and an estimate of the percentage 
and number of subject vehicles which will be impacted. Such exemptions 
need to be accounted for in the emission reduction analysis. In 
addition, the SIP needs to include the legal authority or rule 
necessary to implement and enforce the vehicle coverage requirement.
    The Texas program includes coverage of all 1968 and newer model 
year gasoline powered light-duty vehicles and light-duty and heavy-duty 
trucks, registered or required to be registered within the 
nonattainment areas and fleets primarily operated within an I/M program 
area. Vehicles will be identified through the Texas Department of 
Transportation (DOT) vehicle registration database. There are no 
special classes of vehicles which are exempt from the emission testing 
program. Legal authority for the vehicle coverage is contained in the 
Texas I/M rule.
    The State does have a provision for limited use of an exemption 
given to vehicles on a case by case basis by the Director. The SIP 
indicates in part that a ``motorist may petition the Executive Director 
of the TNRCC for the exemption of a motor vehicle from the requirements 
of the vehicle emissions I/M program contained in the revised Texas I/M 
SIP, upon demonstration that the motorist has taken reasonable measures 
to comply with such requirements and that such exemption shall have 
minimal impact on air quality'' 30 TAC section 114.3(l). While the EPA 
believes this applies only in very limited situations, the EPA has 
asked the State to submit a letter of intention reiterating the 
Preamble to the State rule and specifically stating how this exemption 
is to be used. As an additional safeguard against misinterpretation, 
the State has agreed to clarify the rule at a later date to reflect 
more accurately the specific conditions under which the State is 
planning to exercise this provision. The two cases the State cited in 
their response to comments in the Texas I/M preamble, were the cases of 
unavailable emission related parts needed for repair, and ``grey'' 
market vehicles which were not built to meet U.S. emission requirements 
and have a letter of exemption from EPA. TNRCC estimated in the SIP 
that it was anticipating exempting less that 500 vehicles through this 
mechanism. EPA's concern is regarding the more broad nature of the 
regulatory language. EPA will be approving this provision based upon 
the State's intent as seen in the Preamble to the State rule and the 
letter concerning how this provision of the Texas I/M program will be 
implemented and clarified at a later date, and a commitment to ensure 
that the number of vehicles exempted will not prevent the State from 
meeting EPA's performance standard. EPA understands that Texas intends 
to limit the use of this exemption to only the types of vehicles noted 
in the preamble and will be approving the exemption only on this basis. 
EPA expects that this letter will be received before this action is 
published as a final rule and will be incorporating it into the SIP to 
clarify the limited nature of this approval.

G. Test Procedures and Standards

    The SIP needs to include a description of each test procedure used. 
The SIP also needs to include the rule, ordinance, or law describing 
and establishing the test procedures.
    The Texas I/M SIP obligates the State to do IM240 testing in 
accordance with the EPA's guidance document entitled ``High-Tech I/M 
Test Procedures, Emission Standards, Quality Control Requirements, and 
Equipment Specifications'' (Technical Guidance). The State will be 
requiring IM240 tests on 1984 and later model year vehicles in the 
Houston/Galveston area, on 1986 and later model year vehicles in the 
Dallas/Fort Worth area, and 1988 and later vehicles in El Paso. This 
model year coverage complies with the EPA's I/M regulation. All 1968 
and later model year vehicles not receiving an IM240 test will receive 
a loaded two speed test in accordance with the EPA's test procedures 
contained in the appendices of the Federal I/M rule. The test 
procedures are specifically and legally established in the Request For 
Proposal (RFP), which the Texas I/M contractors are required to abide 
by.

H. Test Equipment

    The SIP needs to include written technical specifications for all 
test equipment used in the program and shall address each of the 
requirements in 40 CFR 51.358 of the Federal I/M rule. The 
specifications need to describe the emission analysis process, the 
necessary test equipment, the required features, and written acceptance 
testing criteria and procedures.
    The Texas I/M SIP obligates the State to use the written equipment 
specifications contained in the EPA's IM240 Guidance Manual and 
appendices of the Federal I/M rule. The Texas SIP and RFP address the 
requirements in 40 CFR 51.358 and include descriptions of performance 
features and functional characteristics of the computerized test 
systems. The necessary test equipment, required features, and 
acceptance testing criteria are mandated in the RFP.

I. Quality Control

    The SIP needs to include a description of quality control and 
recordkeeping procedures. The SIP needs to include the procedures 
manual, rule, and ordinance or law describing and establishing the 
procedures of quality control and requirements.
    The Texas I/M SIP narrative and RFP contain descriptions and 
requirements establishing the quality control procedures in accordance 
with the Federal I/M rule. These requirements will help ensure that 
equipment calibrations are properly performed and recorded as well as 
maintaining compliance document security.The quality control procedures 
manual is contained in the RFP. The Texas SIP obligates the State to 
comply with all specifications for all quality control per Appendix A 
of the Federal I/M rule.

J. Waivers and Compliance via Diagnostic Inspection

    The SIP needs to include a maximum waiver rate expressed as a 
percentage of initially failed vehicles. This waiver rate needs to be 
used for estimating emission reduction benefits in the modeling 
analysis. Also, the State needs to take corrective action if the waiver 
rate exceeds that estimated in the SIP or revise the SIP and the 
emission reductions claimed accordingly. In addition, the SIP needs to 
describe the waiver criteria and procedures, including cost limits, 
quality assurance methods and measures, and administration. Lastly, the 
SIP shall include the necessary legal authority, ordinance, or rules to 
issue waivers, set and adjust cost limits as required, and carry out 
any other functions necessary to administer the waiver system, 
including enforcement of the waiver provisions.
    Cost limits for the minimum expenditure waivers must be in 
accordance with the CAA and Federal I/M rule. These limits are $450 
adjusted annually in the enhanced I/M areas of Houston/Galveston and El 
Paso, and $200 for 1981 and later model year vehicles and $75 for 1980 
and earlier model year vehicles in the areas of Dallas/Fort Worth and 
Beaumont/Port Arthur. The Texas program includes waiver rates as 
percentages of initially failed vehicles of 3% in the Houston/
Galveston, El Paso, and Dallas/Fort Worth areas, and 1% for the 
Beaumont/Port Arthur area. These waiver rates are used in the modeling 
demonstration. The TNRCC commits in the SIP that if the waiver rates 
are higher than estimated the State will take corrective action to 
address the deficiency. The SIP describes the three types of waivers 
that the State will allow, which include a minimum expenditure, time 
extension, and one time hardship waiver provisions. These waivers are 
consistent with the Federal I/M rule. The proper criteria, procedures, 
quality assurance and administration regarding the issuance of waivers 
will be ensured by the TNRCC and managing contractor and are contained 
in the SIP narrative and RFP. In addition, the waiver criteria 
including minimum expenditure requirements are contained in the Texas 
I/M rule.

K. Motorist Compliance Enforcement

    The SIP needs to provide information concerning the enforcement 
process including: (1) A description of the existing compliance 
mechanism if it is to be used in the future and the demonstration that 
it is as effective or more effective than registration-denial 
enforcement; (2) an identification of the agencies responsible for 
performing each of the applicable activities in this section; (3) a 
description of and accounting for all classes of exempt vehicles; and 
(4) a description of the plan for testing fleet vehicles, rental car 
fleets, leased vehicles, and any other special classes of subject 
vehicles, e.g., those operated in (but not necessarily registered in) 
the program area. Also, the SIP needs to include a determination of the 
current compliance rate based on a study of the system that includes an 
estimate of compliance losses due to loopholes, counterfeiting, and 
unregistered vehicles. Estimates of the effect of closing such 
loopholes and otherwise improving the enforcement mechanism need to be 
supported with detailed analyses. In addition, the SIP needs to include 
the legal authority to implement and enforce the program. Lastly, the 
SIP needs to include a commitment to an enforcement level to be used 
for modeling purposes and to be maintained, at a minimum, in practice.
    The State has chosen to use registration denial as its primary 
enforcement mechanism in both basic and enhanced I/M areas. Motorists 
will be denied vehicle registration unless the vehicle has complied 
with the I/M program requirements. Also, the State will implement a 
sticker enforcement program as a secondary enforcement mechanism. The 
motorist compliance enforcement program will be implemented by the 
Texas DOT and TNRCC. There are no classes of vehicles exempt from this 
program. Fleet vehicles, rental car fleets, and leased vehicles that do 
not receive an annual registration will be required to meet the same 
program requirements as all other vehicles that receive annual 
registration. Current compliance rates are estimated between 80-98%, 
while future compliance rates with the new program are estimated at 
96%. The SIP commits to revise the I/M SIP if the TNRCC fails to meet 
the 96% compliance rate. The legal authority to implement and enforce 
the program is included in the Texas statutes and regulations contained 
and cited in the SIP.
    In the formal public comment period of the Texas I/M SIP hearings, 
the EPA commented that the SIP needed to contain a commitment that 
noncompliance cases ``cannot'' be closed until compliance is 
demonstrated. The State responded by making the commitment that 
``noncompliant cases will not be closed until the registration is 
completed or other compliance is demonstrated. Until compliance is 
demonstrated, a vehicle found in violation of TNRCC section 114.3(m) 
will continue to be in violation of the rule, even if a fine has been 
paid.'' The EPA is somewhat concerned that because of the relatively 
low monetary value of fines available, in comparison to the minimum 
expenditure required for waivers, that projected compliance rates will 
be achievable with this system in the future, and will be evaluating 
them at a later date. However, the EPA recognizes that there will be a 
significant improvement in motorist compliance enforcement in the new 
I/M program, and the State's commitment to revise the program if 
projected compliance rates are not met.

L. Motorist Compliance Enforcement Program Oversight

    The SIP needs to include a description of enforcement program 
oversight and information management activities.
    The Texas I/M SIP provides for regular auditing of its enforcement 
program and the following of effective management practices, including 
adjustments to improve the program when necessary. These program 
oversight and information management activities are described in the 
SIP narrative and include: the establishment of written procedures for 
personnel engaged in I/M document handling and processing, an on-line 
telecommunications network to support the State's oversight and 
management requirements, and an I/M database which will be compared to 
the registration database to determine program effectiveness.

M. Quality Assurance

    The SIP needs to include a description of the quality assurance 
program, and written procedures manuals covering both overt and covert 
performance audits, record audits, and equipment audits. This 
requirement does not include materials or discussion of details of 
enforcement strategies that would ultimately hamper the enforcement 
process.
    The Texas I/M SIP includes a description of its quality assurance 
program. The program includes operation and progress reports and overt 
and covert audits of all emission inspectors and emission inspection 
and referee facilities and will be conducted by the TNRCC and its 
managing contractor. Procedures and techniques for overt and covert 
performance, record, and equipment audits will be given to auditors and 
updated as needed.

N. Enforcement Against Contractors, Stations, and Inspectors

    The SIP needs to include the penalty schedule and the legal 
authority for establishing and imposing penalties, civil fines, license 
suspension, and revocations. In the case of State constitutional 
impediments to immediate suspension authority, the State Attorney 
General shall furnish an official opinion for the SIP explaining the 
constitutional impediment as well as relevant case law. Also, the SIP 
needs to describe the administrative and judicial procedures and 
responsibilities relevant to the enforcement process, including which 
agencies, courts, and jurisdictions are involved; who will prosecute 
and adjudicate cases; and other aspects of the enforcement of the 
program requirements, the resources to be allocated to this function, 
and the source of those funds. In States without immediate suspension 
authority, the SIP needs to demonstrate that sufficient resources, 
personnel, and systems are in place to meet the three day case 
management requirement for violations that directly affect emission 
reductions.
    The Texas I/M SIP includes specific penalties in its enforcement 
against contractors, stations, and inspectors in accordance with the 
Federal I/M rule. The SIP includes the State's enforcement procedures 
which can be pursued through either contractual or regulatory action. 
The TNRCC has the authority to immediately suspend a station inspector 
for violations that directly affect emission reduction benefits. Legal 
authority for establishing and imposing penalties, civil fines, license 
suspension, and revocations are contained in the Texas Clean Air Act, 
subchapter D, Texas I/M rule, and contractual enforcement mechanisms 
contained in the RFP. The TNRCC is planning to assign 6 full-time 
equivalent employees to covert and overt auditing as well as additional 
resources required for enforcement oversight provided by the managing 
contractor, the source of which will be funded by the inspection fee.

O. Data Analysis and Reporting

    The SIP needs to describe the types of data to be collected.
    The Texas I/M SIP provides collecting test data to link specific 
test results to specific vehicles, I/M program registrants, test sites, 
and inspectors. The SIP lists the specific types of test data and 
quality control data which will be collected. The data will be used to 
generate reports in the areas of test data, quality assurance, quality 
control, enforcement as well as changes and weaknesses in the program.

P. Inspector Training and Licensing or Certification

    The SIP needs to include a description of the training program, the 
written and hands-on tests, and the licensing or certification process.
    The Texas I/M SIP provides for the implementation of training, 
certification, and refresher programs for emission inspectors. The SIP 
describes this program and curriculum which include written and hands-
on testing at least every two years. All inspectors will be required to 
be certified to inspect vehicles in the Texas I/M program.

Q. Improving Repair Effectiveness

    The SIP needs to include a description of the technical assistance 
program to be implemented, a description of the procedures and criteria 
to be used in meeting the performance monitoring requirements of this 
section for enhanced I/M programs, and a description of the repair 
technician training resources available in the community.
    The Texas SIP includes a description of the technical assistance, 
performance monitoring, and repair technician training programs to be 
implemented. The State will regularly inform repair facilities 
regarding changes to the inspection program, training course schedules, 
common problems, and potential solutions for particular engine 
families, diagnostic tips, repairs, and other assistance issues. The 
TNRCC will also ensure that a repair technician hotline will be 
available for repair technicians. Performance monitoring statistics of 
certified repair facilities will be provided to motorists whose 
vehicles fail the I/M tests in enhanced I/M areas. The State will also 
ensure that adequate repair technician training exists through the 
establishment of an advisory workgroup.

R. Compliance With Recall Notices

    The SIP needs to describe, for enhanced I/M programs, the 
procedures used to incorporate the vehicle recall lists provided into 
the inspection or registration database, the quality control methods 
used to insure that recall repairs are properly documented and tracked, 
and the method (inspection failure or registration denial) used to 
enforce the recall requirements.
    The Texas I/M SIP ensures that vehicles subject to enhanced I/M 
programs and that are included in either a voluntary emission recall or 
a remedial plan determination pursuant to the CAA, have had the 
appropriate repair made prior to the inspection. The managing 
contractor will identify vehicles which have not been identified as 
having completed recall repairs by an electronic means. Motorists with 
unresolved recall notices will be required to show proof of compliance 
or will be denied the opportunity for inspection. The SIP also commits 
to comply with the policies of the National Recall Committee and 
additional EPA rulemaking when available.

S. On-road Testing

    The SIP needs to include a detailed description of the on-road 
testing program required in enhanced I/M areas, including the types of 
testing, test limits and criteria, the number of vehicles (the 
percentage of the fleet) to be tested, the number of employees to be 
dedicated to the on-road testing effort, the methods for collecting, 
analyzing, utilizing, and reporting the results of on-road testing and, 
the portion of the program budget to be dedicated to on-road testing. 
Also, the SIP needs to include the legal authority necessary to 
implement the on-road testing program, including the authority to 
enforce off-cycle inspection and repair requirements. In addition, 
emission reduction credit for on-road testing programs can only be 
granted for a program designed to obtain significant emission 
reductions over and above those already predicted to be achieved by 
other aspects of the I/M program. The SIP needs to include technical 
support for the claimed additional emission reductions.
    The Texas I/M SIP includes a detailed description of its on-road 
testing program. The testing program will include 1/2 of 1% of the 
subject vehicles or 20,000 vehicles, whichever is less. Vehicles with 
emission readings measured by remote sensing devices of 6.0% CO or 
greater will be required to get an out-of-cycle inspection at a vehicle 
emission inspection facility. The State may also utilize voluntary 
roadside pullovers to conduct anti-tampering checks in conjunction with 
loaded or idle emission testing. This program will be staffed by a 
State contractor overseen by the TNRCC. Data collection and reporting 
will be done using the general record keeping and reporting provisions 
of the I/M program. The legal authority for this program is contained 
in the Texas I/M rule. The State did not include additional modeling 
credit for this program in their modeling demonstration needed to meet 
the EPA's performance standard.

T. Concluding Statement

    A more detailed analysis of the State's submittal and how it meets 
the Federal requirements is contained in the EPA's technical support 
document dated March 23, 1994, which is available from the Region 6 
office listed above. The criteria used to review the submitted SIP 
revision are based on the requirements stated in section 182 of the CAA 
and the Federal I/M regulations. Based on these requirements, the EPA 
developed a detailed I/M approvability checklist to be used nationally 
to determine if I/M programs meet the requirements of the CAA and the 
Federal I/M rule. The checklist is formatted by stating what the 
Federal requirement is by section, and then followed by whether or not 
the Texas program meets the criteria and where in the Texas SIP 
submittal the requirements are met. This checklist based on the CAA and 
Federal I/M regulations formed the primary basis for the EPA's 
technical review. The EPA has reviewed the Texas I/M SIP revision 
submitted to the EPA, using the criteria stated above. The Texas 
regulations and accompanying materials contained in the SIP represent 
an acceptable approach to the I/M requirements and meet all the 
criteria required for approvability.

Texas I/M Committal SIP

    On September 27, 1993, the EPA proposed conditional approval of the 
Texas I/M committal SIP which was submitted on November 13, 1992, which 
included a schedule of implementation for the program. At that time, 
the EPA believed that conditional approvals were appropriate for I/M 
SIPs because the States could not be expected to begin developing an I/
M program meeting the requirements of the CAA and the I/M regulations 
until the I/M regulations were adopted as a final rule which occurred 
on November 5, 1992. In a letter dated October 21, 1993, the National 
Resource Defense Counsel (NRDC) commented on the proposed approval of 
the committal SIP arguing that States should have submitted full I/M 
SIPs by November 15, 1992. In addition, in a Court order dated March 8, 
1994, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia 
Circuit concluded, as a result of an NRDC lawsuit over this matter, 
that the EPA's acceptance of I/M committal SIPs was contrary to law and 
improperly delayed SIP submissions beyond the statutory deadlines. 
Further, the Court directed the EPA to review and either approve or 
disapprove by no later that July 15, 1994, all basic and enhanced 
inspection and maintenance SIPs it has already received. As a result of 
this order, the EPA is taking this action to propose approval of the 
Texas SIP which was submitted on November 12, 1993, and on March 9, 
1994, and will not be taking further action on the ``committal'' I/M 
SIP which was submitted by the State of Texas on November 13, 1992.

Proposed Action

    The EPA is proposing to approve the Texas I/M SIP as meeting the 
requirements of the CAA and the Federal I/M rule. All required SIP 
items have been adequately addressed as discussed in this Federal 
Register action.
    The EPA requests comments on this proposal including the EPA's 
proposal to approve the I/M SIP for Texas as meeting the requirements 
of the CAA and Federal I/M rule. As indicated at the outset of this 
action, the EPA will consider any comments received by June 17, 1994 
and make the TSD available upon request.

Regulatory Process

    Under Executive Order 12866, (58 FR 51735 (October 4, 1993)), the 
Agency must determine whether the regulatory action is ``significant'' 
and therefore subject to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
review and the requirements of the Executive Order. The Order defines 
``significant regulatory action'' as one that is likely to result in a 
rule that may: (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million 
or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of 
the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public 
health or safety, or State, local, or tribal government or communities; 
(2) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an 
action taken or planned by another agency;(3) materially alter the 
budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs 
or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or (4) raise novel 
legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's 
priorities, or the principles set forth in the Executive Order.'' The 
OMB has exempted this regulatory action from Executive Order 12866 
review.
    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 600 et seq., the EPA 
must prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis assessing the impact of 
any proposed or final rule on small entities (5 U.S.C. 603 and 604). 
Alternatively, the EPA may certify that the rule will not have a 
significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small 
entities include small businesses, small not-for-profit enterprises, 
and government entities with jurisdiction over populations of less than 
50,000.
    SIP approvals under section 110 and subchapter I, part D, of the 
CAA do not create any new requirements, but simply approve requirements 
that the State is already imposing. Therefore, because the Federal SIP-
approval does not impose any new requirements, I certify that it does 
not have a significantimpact on any small entities affected. Moreover, 
due to the nature of the Federal-State relationship under the CAA, 
preparation of a regulatory flexibility analysis would constitute 
Federal inquiry into the economic reasonableness of State action. The 
CAA forbids the EPA to base its actions concerning SIPs on such 
grounds. (Union Electric Co. v. U.S. E.P.A., 427 U.S. 246, 256-66 (S. 
Ct. 1976); 42 U.S.C. 7410(a)(2)).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, 
Hydrocarbons, Nitrogen dioxide, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401-7671q.

    Dated: May 5, 1994.
Jane N. Saginaw,
Regional Administrator (6A).
[FR Doc. 94-12145 Filed 5-17-94; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-F

Connect with The Crittenden Automotive Library

The Crittenden Automotive Library at Google+ The Crittenden Automotive Library on Facebook The Crittenden Automotive Library on Instagram The Crittenden Automotive Library at The Internet Archive The Crittenden Automotive Library on Pinterest The Crittenden Automotive Library on Twitter The Crittenden Automotive Library on Tumblr
 


The Crittenden Automotive Library

Home Page    About Us    Contribute