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Why Guy: Why does the DMV charge an additional smog abatement fee?

Today's Why Guy question comes from Bill McDowell, who asks, "Can you find out why there's an additional smog abatement fee [at the DMV]?"

Today's WHY GUY question comes to us from Bill McDowell on Facebook, who asks, "Greetings, Why Guy. I recently received my registration for my jeep. The actual registration is $256. The license fee is $245. Then the county piles on with an additional fee and I’m not sure how much. Then there is a smog abatement fee for $20. Can you find out why there's an additional smog abatement fee? I was never asked if that was acceptable."

Bill, thanks. As you know, DMV or any state agency doesn't ask how we feel about fees or taxes, they're a given. Now, this is going to be a short WHY GUY segment because I got a quick answer from DMV about your SMOG abatement fee question, and here’s their statement:

"Smog abatement fees are required on newer cars in lieu of smog checks. The annual fees are $20 for vehicles with a model year of six years or newer, and $25 for vehicles in model year seven and eight."

One can safely say that vehicles that are eight years old and newer don't need smog checks, since they're newer and in decent shape. So, the smog abatement fee, which started in in January 2019, is a way to generate revenue on newer cars instead of making them go through a needless smog check.

Smog checks are still required of your vehicle is nine years old and older. Happy motoring!

Continue the conversation with Walt on Facebook.

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