Mandatory Smog Checks in California Nixed

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The AP is reporting that a California state senator who authored a bill requiring mandatory motorcycle smog testing has dropped the provision from the legislation.

Instead, Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills) altered SB 435 to authorize law enforcement officers to fine motorcyclists who remove smog equipment from their motorcycles. The change came after it became clear that the bill did not have enough votes to survive a state Senate vote. The amended bill eventually passed 22-17.

The bill now goes to the Assembly and if passed will go to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

In its original form, the bill applied to motorcycles built in 2000 and later, with a displacement of 280ccs or higher. Pavley has said that motorcycle owners enjoy an "unfair loophole" because many of them modify their bikes by removing smog control equipment. Opponents labeled the bill as ineffective and intrusive, saying that motorcycles get better gas mileage than cars.