KAYSVILLE — Closing the Davis County I/M vehicle emissions testing station and eliminating 15 of the 20 full-time positions there to save money isn’t adding up, claim current and former center employees.
The Davis Board of Health today is hearing an update on the closure of the I/M vehicle emissions testing station at 20 N. 600 West, Kaysville.
An update on the closure of the station and the elimination of the 15 full-time positions, effective Jan. 1, will be shared with health board members by the health department’s Environmental Health Services Director Dave Spence.
The meeting is at 7 a.m. at the Davis County Health Building, 22 State St., Clearfield.
On Nov. 1, the Davis County Commission adopted a tentative $101.6 million budget for 2013, in which it revealed the health department is closing the tech station and eliminating most of its jobs.
The commission will hold a public hearing on the budget at 6 p.m. Dec. 4 in the new Davis County Administrative Offices, 61 S. Main St., Farmington.
County officials say closing the stations and eliminating the jobs will save the county about $300,000 in operating cost in 2013, and even more savings in years to come.
But there are those — reluctant to share their name publicly out of fear of retribution — who question the $300,000 figure county officials say they will save by closing the station, one of the more lucrative services the county provides when it comes to revenues.
In 2011, the center generated $500,000 in revenue above and beyond its operating cost, said a center staff member.
And despite changes in the law this year regarding the elimination of mandated vehicle safety inspections, the station will still generate more in revenue in 2012 than what it cost to operate it.
“It doesn’t make any sense to be closing, and laying off 15 jobs, something that was making money. They could still make a profit,” said Bountiful resident Lannie Lloyd, who retired from the I/M center at the end of 2011.
Lloyd said he questions where all the profit has gone over the years the I/M tech center has been operating. He also said that on several occasions he has requested, on behalf of the public, motorists and taxpayers, that the county provide the station’s projected revenue numbers.
If the center is to make about $450,000 in revenues in 2012, Lloyd said, show the math as to how the center operation costs are going in the red.
“It all boils down to the money thing. Show us,” Lloyd said, claiming never to have been able to get a straight answer from county officials.
Because of the Veterans Day holiday Monday, county offices were closed.
“It can’t be because of money,” Lloyd said. “That is what I want, is the truth.”
But Davis County Health Director Lewis R. Garrett said in an earlier interview that closing the test station also eliminates the need for the county to have to continually invest in new equipment as vehicle emissions testing continues to evolve.
The county getting out of the vehicle emissions testing business also prevents it from competing with roughly 120 privately owned service stations performing the same work in the county, officials said.