All nine vehicle emissions testing sites to close

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MILWAUKEE -- Changes in the state of Wisconsin Department of Transportation emissions testing program has shut down all 9 facilities in southeast Wisconsin.  Testing will now be done at 200 private businesses, like auto-shops and dealerships.

The change came as the state hired a new company to run their emissions testing program.

"We're going from a fixed network -- a centralized network of nine state centers to a decentralized network of 200 stations that are comprised repair shops, automotive dealerships, and I think it is going to be a great thing for motorists here in
southeast Wisconsin," Scott Selbach with the Department of Transportation said.

The change means drivers can get testing done while going in for an oil change or other service.  State emissions tests will remain free for the driver and take about two minutes to complete.

The move means a big opportunity for dealerships like Russ Darrow Honda.

"It is an opportunity to see some new customers and new clients, and it is a good service for the community," Russ Darrow Honda service manager Greg Lecher said.

The change caused more than 60 employees to be laid off.  It will save about $600,000 annually for the state.

Russ Darrow Honda says they will not be allowed to pressure customers to buy parts or services related to emissions before or after the test.

CLICK HERE for more information on the "Wisconsin Vehicle Inspection Program" and find a list of testing sites.