Calif. bill aims to move smog exception year cutoff from 1975 to 1980

Calif. bill aims to move smog exception year cutoff from 1975 to 1980

A new California bill that would change the state’s smog exemption year cutoff from the originally proposed 1975 to 1980 has been approved by the Senate Committee on Transportation & Housing.

SB 1239, proposed by Republican Senator Ted Gaines, passed the first hurdle in a bipartisan vote of six votes in its favor and five against. Now, the bill is heading to the Senate Committee on Appropriations for consideration.

If it is approved, it would exempt vehicles prior to the 1981 model year from the state’s biennial smog-check inspections as well as open the door for non-California Air Research Board drive train modifications.

Gaines, a Republican senator from El Dorado, said, “Collector cars and trucks are a unique and important part of California history and need to be preserved … Extending the exemption to 1981 is a common-sense way to encourage that these vehicles remain on display for all to see, drive and enjoy.”

The Senator added that the proposed changes in the Section 44011 of the Health & Safety Code would exempt late 1970s vehicles that have been owned and operated as classic and collector vehicles. A number of classic European vehicles from BMW and Porsche would also be exempted.

The measure still has a very long way to go before becoming a state law, but it has already shown classic car enthusiasts a ray of hope.