The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles is no longer issuing specialty license plates featuring the Confederate battle flag, according to a statement. The agency said the removal of the license plate, issued to members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans organization, took effect Jan. 1, the StarNews of Wilmington reported. The move comes six months after NCDMV acknowledged it had received complaints about the Confederate battle flag appearing on a specialty license plate. "The Division of Motor Vehicles has determined that license plates bearing the Confederate battle flag have the potential to offend those who view them," the agency said in a statement. "We have therefore concluded that display of the Confederate battle flag is inappropriate for display on specialty license plates, which remain property of the state." More from the AP:
- NCDMV said it will continue to recognize the North Carolina Division of Sons of Confederate Veterans as a civic organization entitled to a specialty plate, but the recognition does not entitle it to dictate the contents of the government speech on that plate.
- The DMV cites the ruling in the North Carolina Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans v. Faulkner, a 1998 court case that saw the Confederate group sue the state for recognition as a civic organization that qualified for the issuance of a specialty plates. The Sons of Confederate Veterans won the case in a ruling upheld by the North Carolina Court of Appeals, leading to the introduction of the Confederate battle flag plate. In its statement, the NCDMV said it remains in accordance with the ruling, which it said does not extend to the actual contents of the specialty plate.
- WRAL reported Monday that North Carolina Sons of Confederate Veterans chapter spokesman Frank Powell said the group believes the change is illegal and that the SCV’s legal team is reviewing options. "The DMV doesn’t get to choose what logo we use," Powell said.
(Alaska has a license plate issue on its hands