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Legislature restores full funding to emissions-reduction program

🕐 2 min read

Qualifying motorists may receive vouchers worth up to $3,000 toward vehicle replacement as part of the newly passed AirCheckTexas program.

With the Texas Legislature restoring full funding for the air quality initiative, motorists also can receive $3,500 for hybrids and some other fuel-efficient models or repair vouchers of up to $600.

The state-run program, also known by its full name AirCheckTexas Drive a Clean Machine Program, is administered in Dallas-Fort Worth by the the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG).

“The AirCheckTexas Drive a Clean Machine Program has been an integral tool in our ongoing effort to improve air quality for more than a decade,” said Dora Kelly, AirCheckTexas program administrator, commenting in a news release.

“We are pleased the Legislature restored full funding to AirCheckTexas, and we look forward to many more years of this vital program,” Kelly said.

The initiative will receive $22 million per year over the next two fiscal years. The additional funding is expected to allow NCTCOG to provide vouchers for the replacement of about 6,000 vehicles, according to a NCTCOG news release.

Since the Legislature’s 2011 decision reducing AirCheckTexas’ funding as it sought to balance the budget, the program has offered a limited number of replacement vouchers annually while remaining open year-round for repair requests.

In fiscal year 2015, 547 vehicles were replaced with the help of AirCheck Texas vouchers, pushing the total to 31,132 replacements since the program began in 2002.

North Texans whose vehicles have failed the emissions portion of the state inspection in the past 30 days or are at least 10 years old may apply for assistance if they meet the income criteria. Vehicles must be registered in one of the participating counties (Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall or Tarrant).

A family of four earning $72,750 or less per year may receive assistance. A full list of requirements, including additional household income criteria, is available at NCTCOG.org/airchecktexas.

Applications and income documentation for all adults in the household must be submitted by fax, 817-608-2315, or mail, AirCheck Texas Program, P.O. Box 5888, Arlington, Texas 76005-5888. Assistance through the application-based program is offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

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