Health and Safety Code Section 44014.5

44014.5.  (a) The enhanced program shall provide for the testing and retesting of vehicles in accordance with Sections 44010.5 and 44014.2 and this section.

(b) The repair of vehicles at test-only facilities is prohibited, except that the minor repair of components damaged by station personnel during inspection at the station, any minor repair that is necessary for the safe operation of a vehicle while at a station, or other minor repairs, such as the reconnection of hoses or vacuum lines, may be undertaken at no charge to the vehicle owner or operator if authorized in advance in writing by the department.

(c) The department shall make available to consumers of test-only facilities a list, compiled by region, of smog check stations licensed to make repairs of vehicular emission control systems. A test-only facility shall not refer a vehicle owner to any particular provider of vehicle repair services in which the test-only facility has a financial interest.

(d) (1) The department shall establish standards for training, equipment, performance, or data collection for test-only facilities.

(2) (A) The department shall establish inspection-based performance standards consistent with Section 44014.6 that test-only stations would be required to meet to be eligible to issue certificates of compliance or noncompliance for vehicles selected pursuant to Section 44010.5 or 44014.7, or vehicles identified by the department as gross polluters. Failure at any time to meet these standards shall result in suspension of the certification to test these vehicles granted by the department. A test-only station not meeting the performance standards may continue to issue certificates of compliance and noncompliance for other vehicles. The department shall adopt measures to ensure the requirements of this subparagraph are met, including through the use of the computer database and computer network authorized by Section 44037.1.

(B) The department shall provide the test-only station with written or electronic notice, prior to the suspension pursuant to subparagraph (A). The notice shall specify the grounds for the suspension and provide that the station within five days of receipt of the notice may request a hearing before the chief of the bureau or his or her designee to contest the suspension. The request for hearing shall be in writing or shall be made electronically. Receipt of this hearing request shall stay the suspension pending the outcome of the hearing. If a request for hearing is not made, the chief of the bureau shall issue a final written decision of suspension within 10 days of the last date that a hearing could have been requested.

(C) The hearing conducted by the chief of the bureau or his or her designee shall be held not later than 10 days from the date that the request for a hearing is received by the chief of the bureau. The hearing requirements of Section 44072 shall not apply. The chief of the bureau shall render a written decision within 10 days of the hearing. The decision may rescind the suspension, affirm the suspension, or order any other appropriate action. Administrative review, before an administrative law judge, of the decision of the chief of the bureau may be sought within 30 days of the date of the decision.

(D) The department may adopt regulations to implement this paragraph.

(e) The department shall prohibit test-only facilities from engaging in other business activities that represent a conflict of interest, as determined by the department. Upon implementation of the performance standards described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (d), ownership of a test-and-repair station by an owner of a test-only facility shall not be considered a conflict of interest.

(f) The test-only facility may charge a fee, established by the department, sufficient to cover the facility's cost to perform the tests or services, including, but not limited to, referee services and the issuance of waivers and hardship extensions required by this chapter. In addition, the station shall charge and collect the certificate fee established pursuant to Section 44060. This subdivision shall apply only to facilities contracted for pursuant to subdivision (e) of Section 44010.5.

(g) The department shall ensure that there is a sufficient number of test-only facilities to provide convenient testing for the following vehicles:

(1) All vehicles identified and confirmed as gross polluters pursuant to Section 44081 and Section 27156 of the Vehicle Code.

(2) (A) Vehicles initially identified as gross polluters by a smog check station licensed as a test-and-repair station may be issued a certificate of compliance by a test-only facility or by a licensed smog check station certified pursuant to Section 44014.2.

(B) For purposes of this section, the department shall implement a program that allows vehicles initially identified as gross polluters to be repaired and issued a certificate of compliance by a facility licensed and certified pursuant to Section 44014.2.

(3) All vehicles designated by the department pursuant to Sections 44014.7 and 44020.

(4) Vehicles issued an economic hardship extension in the previous biennial inspection of the vehicle.

(h) The department shall provide a sufficient number of test-only facilities authorized to perform referee functions to provide convenient testing for those vehicles that are required to report to, and receive a certificate of compliance from, a test-only facility by this chapter, including all of the following:

(1) All vehicles seeking to utilize state-operated financial assistance or inclusion in authorized scrap programs.

(2) All vehicles unable to obtain a certificate of compliance from a licensed smog check station pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 44015.

(3) Any other vehicles that may be designated by the department.

(i) Gross polluters shall be referred to a test-only facility, or a test-and-repair station that is both licensed and certified pursuant to Sections 44014 and 44014.2, for a postrepair inspection and retest pursuant to subdivision (g). Passing the emissions test is not a sufficient condition for receiving a certificate of compliance. A certificate of compliance shall only be issued to a vehicle that does not have any defects with its emission control system or any defects that could lead to damage of its emission control system, as provided in regulations adopted by the department.

(Amended Sec. 6, Ch. 258, Stats. 2010. Effective January 1, 2011.)