Drivers worry about inspections during ‘stay-at-home’ order

Drivers worry about inspections during ‘stay-at-home’ order

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - North Carolina drivers worry that state law requiring them to have their vehicles inspected contradicts the stay-at-home order and puts their health at risk. State representatives are considering a change in statute to grant car owners leeway on their registration renewals.

North Carolina statute requires vehicle owners to get a safety inspection before renewing registration.

“We can’t go into this inspection as an unknown,” Gaston County resident Sheila Canter Sheilds told WBTV.

Shields called WBTV expressing concern that having to get her vehicle inspected would put her at risk unnecessarily.

“We have to have it done by May,” Shields said.

According to the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, Governor Roy Cooper can’t make an executive order to change it. Instead, the General Assembly has to change the law.

“With inspections, my hope is that we can give people a little bit more time to get that done,” State Representative Chaz Beasley said.

Representative Beasley told WBTV there’s support in the general assembly to extend the time needed to renew registrations much the same way the state has postponed the filing of income taxes and real ID.

“I imagine that the fix will be very similar in that we would say hey if your tag were to expire on April 1st then we might give you a few extra months to go and get the inspection done,” Rep. Beasley said.

But the General Assembly doesn’t plan to meet until April 28th leaving drivers like Shields waiting for clarity.

“The general assembly has got to step up and do their job representing the people of North Carolina. That’s what they were elected to do,” Shields said.

A spokesperson for the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department said they would not comment on enforcement until the general assembly took action on the statute.

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