More than a dozen specialty license plates could be in danger of cancellation under new Indiana requirements.
The rules mandate groups sell at least 500 license plates every year to continue offering them. Based on 2012 figures, that leaves 18 organizations – many of them small colleges and universities – in danger of losing their plates.
Those groups include Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, St. Mary’s College and the Rotary Club.
Bureau of Motor Vehicles General Counsel Elizabeth Murphy says if groups don’t reach the 500 plate mark by the end of the year, they will receive notice early in 2014 that they’re on probation.
“If they don’t meet it then by the end of 2014, we would send them a letter in January of 2015 telling them that they were terminated from the program and if they wanted to participate in the program again, they would have to reapply,” Murphy says.
Every group that’s had a specialty plate for at least ten years also has to reapply for their plate. The application includes annual financial reports, evidence of the group’s statewide public benefit and information on how the money generated by the plates is used. Organizations whose plates were first issued less than ten years ago will go through the same process in the tenth year of their plates.
Fort Wayne Republican Senator Tom Wyss chairs the new Special Group Recognition License Plate Committee. He says the reapplication process is important because many groups skirted the previous specialty plate criteria by getting lawmakers to sponsor legislation providing the plates.
“Making sure that whatever we do, we treat each and every group fairly that meets our criteria,” Wyss says. “It’s that you’re meeting it or you’re not.”
Beginning Aug. 1, the organizations can get an application from the BMV and must submit it by April 1 of 2014 to retain their plates.