Ohio State Lawmakers Urge Ohio EPA to Eliminate E-Check Program in Northeast Ohio

A bipartisan group of Ohio lawmakers is urging the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to eliminate the federal program known as E-Check in northeast Ohio.

The group of 11 state lawmakers sent a letter to Ohio EPA director Anne Vogel urging her to eliminate the federal program within the state which requires northeast Ohioans living within Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, and Summit counties to get their vehicles tested every two years to pass regulatory emissions requirements.

According to the lawmakers, this “subjectively applied program places an undue burden on hardworking people,” living in northeast Ohio.

“We respectfully request the Ohio EPA to consider ending the E-Check program in Northeast Ohio,” the lawmakers said.

A recent air quality study from IQAir, a Swiss air technology company, concluded that Columbus, Ohio is the most polluted city in the country, at a rate of approximately 15 micrograms of lung-damaging airborne particles per cubic meter (PM2.5).

This year, the Biden administration suggested reducing the pollution from fossil fuels or industrial fine soot particles from the present yearly level of 12 micrograms per cubic meter to a level between 9 and 10 micrograms per cubic meter.

According to the lawmakers, the Ohio EPA should adjust the E-Check policy to reflect the data that northeast Ohio is not the greatest source of Ohio’s air pollution.

“While this program was well-intentioned 30 years ago, the air quality is significantly cleaner in the Cleveland/Akron area compared to greater Columbus. To maximize results, the policy should be aimed at ameliorating the greatest source of air pollution which is in Central Ohio and not Northeast Ohio. We believe the policy should be adjusted to best reflect this data,” the lawmakers said.

The eleven lawmakers who signed onto the letter include State Representatives Bill Roemer (R-Richfield), Haraz Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg), Sharon Ray (R-Wadsworth), Sarah Fowler Arthur (R-Ashtabula), Daniel Troy (D-Willowick), Melanie Miller (R-City of Ashland), Steve Demetriou (R-Bainbridge Twp.), Gayle Manning (R-North Ridgeville), Dick Stein (R-Norwalk), Bob Young (R-Green), and Sean Brennan (D-Parma).

According to Demetriou, he is proud to sign onto the letter urging the Ohio EPA to end the unnecessary and E-Check.

“I was proud to join a bipartisan group of colleagues in the Ohio House in urging the Ohio EPA to end the costly and unnecessary government mandate on everyday Northeast Ohioans known as E-Check,” Demetriou said.

This is not the first time that Ohio lawmakers have tried to eliminate E-Check from Ohio. State Representatives Diane Grendell (R-Chesterland) and Gail Pavliga (R-Portage County) previously proposed House Resolution 56 which called for the elimination of the E-Check program under the Federal Clean Air Act.

The resolution urged Congress to remove Ohio from the Clean Air Act and called for the EPA to find more “effective alternatives.”

The resolution passed in the Ohio House of Representatives back in June of 2021 but stalled thereafter.

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Hannah Poling is a lead reporter at The Ohio Star, The Star News Network, and The Arizona Sun Times. Follow Hannah on Twitter @HannahPoling1. Email tips to [email protected]






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