Stockton, CA / Bilingual Weekly
It was a cold and foggy morning, but that did not seemed to bother the drivers who were already at one of San Joaquin Delta College’s parking lots to be the first in line for the Tune In & Tune Up event on Saturday, February 22, 2011.
As the morning progressed the fog lifted up, cars started advancing through the smog check stations, community service booths opened up and free food and drinks were offered to waiting motorists and their families.
“The sun came up, people were really appreciative… there was a festive mood,” said Mary Ann Tiane-Chapman, project manager for Buethe Communications, local organization that helped bring the event for a third time to Stockton.
Of the 407 cars tested on Saturday, about ten percent passed, ten percent were deemed beyond repair, and more than 300 were issued smog repair vouchers.
“Many of these cars are older models, high mileage, non-registered cars from low income neighborhoods that have fallen through the cracks of the system,” said Tom Knox, a coordinator for the event’s main organizer, ValleyCAN, “through this event we can address these people in a positive way, hand them a coupon to repair their cars, clean the air and get them back into the system.”
“It’s nice what they are doing for the air, the environment and with the taxpayer’s money,” said Ray Rios, 32, of Stockton, as his car received the free diagnosis.
“Yes. It’s a great opportunity to help people and clean up the smog emissions,” added George Woodward, 46 of Modesto —auto instructor at Modesto Junior College— as he connected vehicles for smog tests.
Considered one of the most cost-effective methods to reduce vehicle emissions attempted to date in California, Tune In & Tune Up is mainly funded through the Reformulated Gasoline Settlement Fund. Fifteen of these events will be held throughout the Valley over the next eighteen months. The next one will be February 26th in Fresno.