That must be a county thing...we don't have emission testing here. Just lights, horn, brakes, mirrors, and broken glass.
Yes, the more populated counties have a different set of rules than rural TX. I think if I lived about 20 minutes further north, life would be much simpler. I'm in Collin County, but I know Denton & Dallas counties have the same rules. Grayson is just a bit away and they aren't held to the same standard.