CHARLESTON – West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has joined six other states in urging the Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw a proposed rule that could deal a significant blow to stock car and drag racing in West Virginia.
A letter was sent April 1 to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, objecting to her agency requiring that certified motor vehicles, engines and emission control devices remain in their certified configuration even if altered vehicles are used exclusively for competition or non-road purposes.
Morrisey said the proposed rule could jeopardize racing, as well as countless jobs and local economics that benefit from the pastime’s success.
In 2014, U.S. consumers spent $36 billion on automotive specialty equipment, parts and accessories.
“This rule effectively makes modifying a vehicle for purposes of racing illegal,” Morrisey said. “That will destroy jobs and end a pastime Congress specifically protected under the Clean Air Act. Any purported benefit gained by EPA would pale in comparison to the economic damage it will cause.”
Morrisey signed the letter with Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and five other states. Together, the coalition seeks to protect manufacturers, retailers and technicians whose products would become illegal to make, sell or install across the nation.
That would jeopardize racing at facilities throughout West Virginia, including the Kanawha Valley Motorsports Park in Mason County, sport car racing in Mineral County and stock car ovals in Cabell, Greenbrier, Jefferson, Jackson, Mercer, Mineral, Randolph, Ritchie, Tyler and Wood counties.
Morrisey and his counterparts further contend the proposed rule exceeds the EPA’s authority. They specifically cite congressional testimony in arguing the Clean Air Act of 1970 was passed to deal with automobiles intended for everyday, on-road usage – not racing vehicles.
West Virginia and Ohio signed the letter with Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, Michigan and Georgia.