Tennessee senator calls for hearings on VW emissions scandal

The VW Logo is photographed at a car at the Car Show in Frankfurt, Germany, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015. Volkswagen has admitted that it intentionally installed software programmed to switch engines to a cleaner mode during official emissions testing. The software then switches off again, enabling cars to drive more powerfully on the road while emitting as much as 40 times the legal pollution limit. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

NASHVILLE, TN (AP) – A state senator is urging legislative hearings over the Volkswagen emissions scandal be held in Tennessee, the home of the German automaker’s lone U.S. plant.

Republican Sen. Bo Watson of Chattanooga, who has been a vocal critic of Volkswagen’s labor policies, on Tuesday cited the state’s “significant investment” into the plant in calling for the Senate Finance Committee to investigate the potential of revelations that VW used secret software to thwart pollution controls.

Volkswagen received a more than $577 million incentive to build the plant in Chattanooga in 2008. Another state and local package worth up to $300 million was offered last year to persuade VW to expand the plant to build a new SUV there.

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam said this week he’s “concerned” about the VW findings.

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