168.1293 Certain special plates; authorization, discontinuance.
Subdivision 1. Definition. For purposes of this section and section 168.1297, "special plate" means a plate authorized by sections 168.12, subdivisions 2b and 2e; 168.1235; and 168.129, to have wording and graphics that differ from a Minnesota passenger vehicle plate.
Subd. 2. Submissions to commissioner. (a) A person, legal entity, or other requester, however organized, that plans to seek legislation establishing a new plate shall submit the following information and fee to the commissioner:
(1) The requester shall submit a request for the special plate being sought, describing the proposed plate in general terms, the purpose of the plate, and the proposed fee or minimum contribution required for the plate.
(2) The requester shall submit the results of a scientific sample survey of Minnesota motor vehicle owners that indicates that at least 10,000 motor vehicle owners intend to purchase the proposed plate with the proposed fee or minimum contribution. The requester's plan to undertake the survey must be reported to the commissioner before the survey is undertaken. The survey must be performed independently of the requester by another person or legal entity, however organized, that conducts similar sample surveys in the normal course of business.
(3) The requester shall submit an application fee of $20,000, to cover the cost of reviewing the application for a new plate and developing the new special plate if authorized by law. State funds may not be used to pay the application fee.
(4) The requester shall submit a marketing strategy that contains (i) short-term and long-term marketing plans for the requested plate, and (ii) a financial analysis showing the anticipated revenues and the planned expenditures of any fee or contribution derived from the requested plate.
(b) The requester shall submit the information required under paragraph (a) to the commissioner at least 120 days before the convening of the next regular legislative session at which the requester will submit the proposal.
Subd. 3. Design; redesign. (a) If the proposed new special plate sought by the requester is approved by law, the requester shall submit the proposed design for the plate to the commissioner as soon as practicable, but not later than 120 days after the effective date of the law authorizing issuance of the plate. The commissioner is responsible for selecting the final design for the special plate.
(b) The requester that originally requested a special plate subsequently approved by law may not submit a new design for the plate within the five years following the date of first issuance of the plate unless the inventory of those plates has been exhausted. The requester may deplete the remaining inventory of the plates by reimbursing the commissioner for the cost of the plates.
Subd. 4. Refund of fee. If the special plate requested is not authorized in the legislative session at which authorization was sought, the commissioner shall refund $17,500 of the application fee to the requester.
Subd. 5. Discontinuance of plate. (a) The commissioner shall discontinue the issuance or renewal of any special plate authorized by sections 168.12, subdivisions 2b and 2e; 168.1235; and 168.129, if (1) fewer than 1,000 sets of those plates are currently registered at the end of the first six years during which the plates are available, or (2) fewer than 1,000 sets of those plates are currently registered at the end of any subsequent two-year period following the first six years of availability.
(b) The commissioner shall discontinue the issuance or renewal of any special plate authorized by sections 168.12, subdivisions 2b and 2e; 168.1235; and 168.129, and distribution of any contributions resulting from that plate, if the commissioner determines that (1) the fund or requester receiving the contributions no longer exists, (2) the requester has stopped providing services that are authorized to be funded from the contribution proceeds, (3) the requester has requested discontinuance, or (4) contributions have been used in violation of subdivision 6.
Subd. 6. Use of contributions. Contributions made as a condition of obtaining a special plate authorized by sections 168.12, subdivisions 2b and 2e; 168.1235; and 168.129, and interest earned on the contributions, may not be spent for commercial or for-profit purposes.
Subd. 7. Deposit of fee; appropriation. The commissioner shall deposit the application fee under subdivision 2, paragraph (a), clause (3), in the vehicle services operating account of the special revenue fund under section 299A.705. An amount sufficient to pay the department's cost in implementing and administering this section, including payment of refunds under subdivision 4, is appropriated to the commissioner.