West Virginia Bill Reduces Mandatory Vehicle Inspections

Feb. 2, 2023

Debate sparked on the West Virginia senate floor over whether vehicle inspections should be performed annually or biennially. 

Feb. 2, 2023 – A bill presented in the West Virginia senate to change vehicle inspections to every two years instead of annually sparked some debate on the floor, Williamson Daily News reports.

Senator Mike Stuart, a Republican from Kanawha county, spoke in favor of the bill, saying that it would “West Virginians safe while adding to the convenience of being a citizen of the state.”

Opposition was voiced by minority leader Mike Woelfel, a Democrat from Cabell county. He pointed to Ohio, where there are no vehicle inspections and, as he said, “people have the vehicles tied together with baling wire and twine,” as an example of how dangerous vehicles can become when they are not inspected. 

“If we see there is some substantial issue at some point in the future we can change this law and move it back to a one-year requirement,” Stuart said.

Woelfel asked how reducing the frequency of having vehicles tested could result in people being any safer. But according to Stuart, “the question should be will it make people less safe.”

“I don’t see the net gain, other than to say ‘freedom’ from the government burden for that year,” Woelfel countered. “We are a leader in this and we want our people to be safe.”

If passed into law, the bill will take effect on Jan. 1, 2024.