Montana Code Annotated 2021



Part 4. Special Registration

Qualifications And Approval Of Organization As Sponsor

61-3-475. Qualifications and approval of organization as sponsor. (1) To qualify as a sponsor of a generic specialty license plate, an organization shall:

(a) apply, through the organization's officers, for sponsorship on a form or in a format prescribed by the department;

(b) submit proof of good standing if the organization is required to be registered with the office of the secretary of state;

(c) designate one of its members as the organization's generic specialty license plate liaison. The liaison is responsible for all communications with the department regarding the organization's sponsorship of generic specialty license plates and shall file the liaison's name, address, and telephone number with the department.

(d) specify in its application the donation fee proposed by the organization for initial purchase of the organization's generic specialty license plate and for renewal of the organization's generic specialty license plate if the fee is required on renewal;

(e) submit to the department proof that is acceptable to the department that:

(i) the organization is a nonprofit organization that is exempt from taxation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The organization shall submit proof of its tax-exempt status annually to the department. Acceptable forms of proof include the current year's federal income tax filing documents or a Montana secretary of state tax identification number.

(ii) the organization has held its tax-exempt status for at least 1 year prior to submitting its application to sponsor a generic specialty license plate;

(iii) the primary purpose of the organization, except for an organization of military service veterans, is service to the community through specific programs that promote improving public health, education, or general welfare;

(iv) the organization's name, identifying phrase, or graphic that will be placed on the generic specialty license plate does not:

(A) invoke connotations offensive to good taste and decency;

(B) promote, advertise, or endorse a product, brand, or service provided for sale;

(C) infringe or otherwise violate a trademark, trade name, service mark, copyright, or other proprietary or property right; or

(D) obscure the generic specialty license plate letters or numbers that the department assigns as provided in 61-3-474(1)(c);

(v) the organization's headquarters or base of operations is in this state or, if the organization is a chapter or branch of an international, national, or regional organization, the chapter or branch is in good standing and has authorization in writing from the parent organization to use the name and graphic of the parent organization;

(vi) the organization is a Montana entity, including proof of the organization's Montana address, contact information for the organization's board of directors, and the organization's account with a Montana banking institution. The organization shall submit the information required under this subsection (1)(e)(vi) annually.

(vii) the organization has an active telephone number listed under its name in at least one published Montana directory; and

(viii) at least 75% of the donation fees collected will be spent in Montana.

(2) The department may require a statement under oath from the officers of the organization that the organization is authorized to use the name, identifying phrase, and graphic submitted for display on a generic specialty license plate and that no infringement or violation of any property right exists, together with an agreement to defend and hold harmless the state of Montana, its employees, or its agents for any liability as a result of an infringement or violation of any property right.

(3) The department's approval or rejection of an organization's application for generic specialty license plate sponsorship must be based on the requirements provided in 61-3-472 through 61-3-481. The department shall state in writing the reasons for its rejection of an organization's application.

(4) An organization may apply for and be approved to sponsor only one generic specialty license plate design at any time. Once a minimum 4-year period has expired, an organization may apply to the department for approval of a new generic specialty license plate design along with submission of the fee required under 61-3-478(1).

(5) If the department approves the organization's new generic specialty license plate design, issuance and renewal of the previously approved generic specialty license plate must be discontinued, effective on the date of the initial distribution of the newly approved generic specialty license plate design.

History: En. Sec. 4, Ch. 402, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 280, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 7, Ch. 295, L. 2019.