1976 South Carolina Code of Laws
Unannotated
Updated through the end of the 2000 Session

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Title 56 - Motor Vehicles

CHAPTER 3.

MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION AND LICENSING

ARTICLE 1.

SHORT TITLE; DEFINITIONS

SECTION 56-3-10. Short title.

This chapter shall be known and cited as the "South Carolina Motor Vehicle Registration and Licensing Act."

SECTION 56-3-20. Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, the following words and phrases are defined as follows:

(1) "Vehicle" means every device in, upon, or by which a person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, except devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

(2) "Motor vehicle" means every vehicle which is self- propelled, except mopeds, and every vehicle which is propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires, but not operated upon rails.

(3) "Motorcycle" means every motorcycle having no more than two permanent functional wheels in contact with the ground or trailer and having a saddle for the use of the rider, but excluding a tractor.

(4) "Motor-driven cycle" means every motorcycle, including every motor scooter, with a motor which produces not to exceed five horsepower.

(5) "Authorized emergency vehicle" means vehicles of the fire department (fire patrol), police vehicles, and the ambulances and emergency vehicles of municipal departments or public service corporations designated or authorized by the department or the chief of police of an incorporated municipality.

(6) "School bus" means every bus owned by a public or governmental agency and operated for the transportation of children to or from school or privately owned and operated for the transportation of children to or from school.

(7) "Truck tractor" means every motor vehicle designed and used primarily for drawing other vehicles and not constructed so as to carry a load other than a part of the weight of the vehicle and load drawn.

(8) "Farm tractor" means every motor vehicle designed and used primarily as a farm implement for drawing plows, mowing machines, and other implements of husbandry.

(9) "Road tractor" means every motor vehicle designed and used for drawing other vehicles and not constructed so as to carry a load on it either independently or any part of the weight of a vehicle or load drawn.

(10) "Truck" means every motor vehicle designed, used, or maintained primarily for the transportation of property.

(11) "Special mobile equipment" includes every vehicle, with or without motive power, not designed or used primarily for the transportation of persons or pay-load property and incidentally operated or moved over the highways, including farm tractors, road construction and maintenance machinery, ditchdigging apparatus, well-boring apparatus, truck cranes or mobile shovel cranes, and similar vehicles; this enumeration is deemed partial and does not operate to exclude other vehicles which are within the general terms of this definition.

(12) "Bus" means every motor vehicle designed for carrying more than ten passengers and used for the transportation of persons and every motor vehicle, other than a taxicab, designed and used for the transportation of persons for compensation.

(13) "Trailer" means every vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle and constructed so that no part of its weight rests upon the towing vehicle.

(14) "Semitrailer" means every vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle and constructed so that some part of its weight and that of its load rests upon or is carried by another vehicle.

(15) "Pole trailer" means every vehicle without motive power designed to be drawn by another vehicle and attached to the towing vehicle by means of a reach or pole or by being boomed or otherwise secured to the towing vehicle and ordinarily used for transporting long or irregularly shaped loads such as poles, pipes, or structural members capable, generally, of sustaining themselves as beams between the supporting connections.

(16) "Foreign vehicle" means every vehicle of a type required to be registered brought into this State from another state, territory, or country other than in the ordinary course of business by or through a manufacturer or dealer and not registered in this State.

(17) "Implement of husbandry" means every vehicle which is designed for agricultural purposes and exclusively used by its owner in the conduct of his agricultural operations.

(18) "Solid tire" means every tire of rubber or other resilient material which does not depend upon compressed air for the support of the load.

(19) "Gross weight" or "gross weight vehicle" means the weight of a vehicle without load plus the weight of any load on it.

(20) "Load capacity" means the maximum weight of the pay load of the property intended to be transported by a vehicle or combination of vehicles, exclusive of the weight of the vehicle or vehicles.

(21) "Owner" means a person who holds the legal title of a vehicle or, in the event (a) a vehicle is the subject of an agreement for the conditional sale or lease with the right of purchase upon performance of the conditions stated in the agreement and with an immediate right of possession vested in the conditional vendee or lessee or (b) a mortgagor of a vehicle is entitled to possession, then the conditional vendee or lessee or mortgagor is deemed the owner for the purpose of this chapter.

(22) "Nonresident" means every person who is not a resident of this State.

(23) "Dealer" or "motor vehicle dealer" means both "dealer" and "wholesaler" as defined in Chapter 15 of this title.

(24) [Deleted]

(25) "Street" or "highway" means the entire width between boundary lines of every way publicly maintained when any part of it is open to the use of the public for vehicular travel.

(26) "Odometer" means an instrument for measuring and recording the actual distance a motor vehicle travels while in operation; it does not include an auxiliary instrument designed to be reset by the operator of the motor vehicle for the purpose of recording the distance traveled on trips.

(27) "Odometer reading" means actual cumulative distance traveled disclosed on the odometer.

(28) "Odometer disclosure statement" means a statement, as prescribed by item (4) of Section 56-3-240, certified by the owner of the motor vehicle to the transferee or to the department as to the odometer reading.

(29) "Moped" means every cycle with pedals to permit propulsion by human power and with a motor of not more than fifty cubic centimeters which produces not to exceed one and one-half brake horsepower and which is not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed in excess of twenty-five miles per hour on level ground. If an internal combustion engine is used, the moped must have a power drive system that functions directly or automatically without clutching or shifting by the operator after the drive system is engaged.

(30) "Automotive three-wheel vehicle" means every motor vehicle having no more than three permanent functional wheels in contact with the ground, having a bench seat for the use of the operator, and having an automotive type steering device, but excluding a tractor or motorcycle three-wheel vehicle.

(31) "Motorcycle three-wheel vehicle" means every motor vehicle having no more than three permanent functional wheels in contact with the ground to include motorcycles with detachable side cars, having a saddle type seat for the operator, and having handlebars or a motorcycle type steering device, but excluding a tractor or automotive three-wheel vehicle.

ARTICLE 3.

REGISTRATION AND LICENSING GENERALLY

SECTION 56-3-110. Vehicles required to be registered and licensed.

Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer and special mobile equipment vehicle driven, operated or moved upon a highway in this State shall be registered and licensed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. It shall be a misdemeanor for any person to drive, operate or move upon a highway or for the owner knowingly to permit to be driven, operated or moved upon a highway any such vehicle which is not registered and licensed and the required fee paid as provided for in this chapter.

SECTION 56-3-115. Golf carts; permit to operate on highways and streets.

The owner of a vehicle commonly known as a golf cart, if he has a valid driver's license, may obtain a permit from the department upon the payment of a fee of five dollars and proof of financial responsibility which permits him to:

(1) operate the golf cart on a secondary highway or street within two miles of his residence during daylight hours only; and

(2) cross a primary highway or street while traveling along a secondary highway or street within two miles of his residence during daylight hours only.

SECTION 56-3-120. Exemptions from registration and licensing requirement.

The following vehicles are exempt from registration and licensing under this chapter:

(1) a vehicle driven, operated, or moved upon a highway pursuant to the provisions of this chapter relating to nonresidents or under temporary permits issued by the department as authorized;

(2) any implement of husbandry, including a knuckleboom loader mounted on a trailer or straight truck, whether of a type otherwise subject to registration and license which only incidentally is operated or moved upon a highway;

(3) a special mobile equipment vehicle which only occasionally is moved over a highway and special mobile equipment vehicle of the State or its departments, agencies, or political subdivisions;

(4) a vehicle owned and operated by the government of the United States; and

(5) a trailer or semitrailer of a motor carrier as defined in Section 12-37-2810 for which the fee-in-lieu of taxes and registration requirements has been paid and a distinctive permanent plate has been issued pursuant to Section 12-37-2860.

SECTION 56-3-130. Exemption of certain boat, farm and other utility trailers.

Boat trailers under twenty-five hundred pounds, farm trailers and other utility trailers which are privately owned and not for hire need not be licensed or registered.

SECTION 56-3-140. Exemption of certain professional racing cars.

Professional racing cars not operated under their own power but towed by another vehicle going to or from a race track need not be registered or licensed.

SECTION 56-3-150. Exemption of certain foreign vehicles of nonresident owners.

A foreign privately-owned-and-operated passenger vehicle of a nonresident, otherwise subject to registration and license under the provisions of this chapter may be operated within this State without being registered and licensed under the provisions of this chapter, subject to the conditions that the vehicle is at all times, when operated in this State, duly registered or licensed in the state, territory, district, or country of residence of the owner and that there is displayed thereon a valid registration card and registration or license plate or plates. The vehicle of a nonresident must be registered and licensed pursuant to this chapter upon the earlier of a nonresident's:

(1) subsequent establishment of domicile in this State, or

(2) operation of the vehicle in this State for an accumulated period exceeding one hundred fifty days.

SECTION 56-3-160. Foreign vehicles of resident owners.

Every foreign vehicle moved into this State the owner of which is a resident of this State immediately becomes liable for registration and license under the provisions of this chapter, and for the purpose of this section, the term "resident of this State" shall include every person who moves temporarily or permanently into this State for the purpose of engaging in any business, profession or employment.

SECTION 56-3-170. Reciprocity with respect to the operation of vehicles licensed out of State.

Notwithstanding any provisions of this chapter, the Department may grant to any other state, country, territory or district reciprocity with respect to the operation of any vehicles in this State without being registered and licensed under the provisions of this chapter if such other state, country, territory or district extends under its laws, rules and regulations like privileges to vehicles registered and licensed in this State, subject to the conditions that every such vehicle is at all times, when operated in this State, duly registered or licensed in such state, territory, district or country in accordance with the lawful requirements of such state, country, territory or district and that there is displayed thereon a valid registration card and registration or license plate or plates.

SECTION 56-3-180. Issuance of special permits to move vehicles in emergency; restrictions.

The Department may issue in writing special permits to move vehicles otherwise required to be registered and licensed under this chapter from one place to another in case of emergency when such vehicles do not display the required current license plate or plates or registration cards. No such vehicle shall be entitled to more than one such special permit during any one registration and license year. Every such special permit shall specify the date the vehicle is to be moved and the place from and to which movement is to be made. Every such special permit issued pursuant to this section must be carried on the vehicle so authorized to be moved.

SECTION 56-3-190. Department may register and license vehicles.

The Department may register and license vehicles as required by this chapter upon application being made therefor by the owner and the required fees paid as provided in this chapter.

SECTION 56-3-195. Counties to process vehicle registration and licensing renewals; access to records; department to fund startup costs.

(A) Beginning on July 1, 1994, each county shall mail motor vehicle registration and licensing renewal notices to the owners of vehicles in the county as determined by the Division of Motor Vehicles of the department no later than forty-five days before expiration of the registration. The renewal notices, including the fees upon completion, may be returned to that county which shall transmit the renewal notices to the department for processing and which shall transmit the fees to the appropriate state fund as provided by law within seven days of receipt.

(B) Each county shall have access to the motor vehicle registration and licensing records of the department as applicable to the county in the manner the county and department agree for the purpose of the county performing the functions required in subsection (A).

(C) Counties must not be charged online access network fees for driver and vehicle information.

(D) The department will fund the start-up costs for counties not to exceed a total of one million dollars inclusive to all counties. The start-up cost includes hardware, software, training, and other associated costs all of which must be approved by the department.

SECTION 56-3-200. Certificate of title or application therefor as prerequisite to registration.

Except as otherwise provided for in Chapter 19 of this Title, the Department shall not register or renew the registration of a vehicle unless a certificate of title has been issued by the Department to the owner or an application therefor has been delivered by the owner to the Department.

SECTION 56-3-210. Grace period for procuring registration and license.

Persons newly acquiring vehicles and owners of foreign vehicles being moved into this State and required to be registered under this chapter may have not more than forty-five days in which to register and license them.

SECTION 56-3-215. Temporary permits authorized for out-of-state registered farm trucks harvesting and transporting seasonal crops in state.

The Department shall be authorized to issue special permits to owners of farm trucks registered and licensed in another state which special permits shall authorize the operation of such trucks in this State for a period of forty-five days without the requirement that such trucks be registered and licensed in this State.

Trucks eligible for these special permits shall be those which are brought into this State on a short-term temporary basis for the sole purpose of harvesting and transporting seasonal crops to other locations both within and without South Carolina. The Department in its sole discretion shall determine what farm trucks qualify for these special permits and may require such proof as it deems necessary of the usage of trucks to which special permits shall apply.

The Department shall prescribe the form of such permit (including the permit application) and shall be displayed or kept in the truck at all times during the exemption period. The Department shall not issue a special permit to any owner unless he first furnishes evidence of motor vehicle liability insurance in at least the minimum amounts required by law in South Carolina. The fee for each permit shall be one-tenth of the annual fee required for trucks of the same weight. Only one permit for a particular truck shall be issued in any one calendar year.

The Department shall promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to implement the provisions of this section.

SECTION 56-3-220. Dealer "sold" cards; purpose and information thereon.

Dealers selling vehicles may attach and display on vehicles which they sell a "sold" card as evidence of the sale so as to indicate to any law enforcement officer the fact that the vehicle is being operated upon the highway pursuant to Section 56-3-210, which allows persons newly acquiring a vehicle thirty days in which to register and license the vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-230. Application for registration and license.

Every owner of a vehicle subject to registration and for which a license is required shall make application to the department for the registration and licensing of the vehicle upon the appropriate forms furnished by the department. Every application must bear the signature of the owner.

SECTION 56-3-240. Contents of application.

Every such application shall contain:

(1) The name, bona fide residence and mail address of the owner or business address of the owner if a firm, association or corporation and the county, municipality, if applicable, and school district in which the applicant resides;

(2) A description of the vehicle including insofar as such data may exist with respect to a given vehicle, the make, model, type of body, number of cylinders, serial number and engine or other number of the vehicle, whether the vehicle is new or used and the date of sale by the manufacturer or dealer to the person intending to operate such a vehicle and, in the event a vehicle is designed, constructed, converted or rebuilt for the transportation of property, a statement of the load capacity for which it is to be registered;

(3) Such further information as may reasonably be required by the Department to enable it to determine whether the vehicle is lawfully entitled to registration and licensing;

(4) In addition to the information required by item (2), whenever the application is for a motor vehicle which has been transferred from a previous registrant to the applicant, the applicant will complete the odometer disclosure statement on the application which shall be in compliance with federal guidelines and as prescribed by the department.

(5) In addition to other registration requirements the department shall collect a federal employer identification number or social security number when a vehicle is registered with a gross vehicle weight of more than twenty-six thousand pounds or as a bus common carrier.

Under the terms of the Federal Motor Vehicle Information and Cost Savings Act and applicable state law, incorrect information may result in civil liability and civil or criminal penalties.

SECTION 56-3-250. Statement certifying payment of county and municipal taxes and address shall accompany application; exceptions.

No vehicle shall be registered and licensed by the department unless a signed statement accompanies the application certifying that all county and municipal taxes legally due by the applicant on the vehicle concerned have been paid and if such vehicle is legally subject to being returned by the applicant for county and municipal taxes such return has been made; that the applicant is not delinquent in the payment of any motor vehicle taxes in this State, and that the address and county shown on the application for license is the true legal residence of the applicant. A transfer between members of the same family shall not, for the purpose of this section, be considered a bona fide purchase. Any person falsely certifying as required in this section shall have his driver's license suspended for a period of six months.

The provisions of this section shall not apply to any citizen of this State on active duty with the Armed Forces of the United States when the vehicle to be registered and licensed is operated for more than six months each year outside the boundaries of this State, nor to any motor vehicle subject to assessment for ad valorem tax purposes by the State Tax Commission.

SECTION 56-3-251. [1993 Act No. 164, Part II, Section 22A, eff July 1, 1993] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-253. Establishment of biennial registration periods.

(A) Vehicles required by Chapter 3 of Title 56 to be registered biennially must be assigned registration periods as provided in this section.

(1) Upon the first reregistration of the vehicles by the department after the effective date of the implementation of biennial licensure, a biennial registration period must be implemented as follows:

(a) Vehicles whose license plates end in:

(i) an even number and expire between July 1, 1993, and December 31, 1993, shall obtain a biennial registration;

(ii) an even number and expire between January 1, 1994, and June 30, 1994, shall reregister their vehicles for one year. At the end of this time they shall reregister their vehicles for two years and biennially after that time;

(iii) an odd number and expire between July 1, 1993, and December 31, 1993, shall register their vehicles for one year. At the end of that time they shall reregister their vehicles for two years and biennially after that time;

(iv) an odd number and expire between January 1, 1994, and June 30, 1994, shall obtain a biennial registration;

(v) all special license plates must obtain a biennial registration upon renewal, except that official plates such as Legislative, Judicial, Commission, and Congressional must be renewed annually for one-half the biennial fee.

(2) Registrations are valid until the last day of the month in which the registration expires.

(B) After June 30, 1994, vehicles must be registered and licensed for twenty-four consecutive months, and registrations expire the last day of the month. The registration and license must be renewed biennially upon application by the owner and payment of fees required by law to take effect on the first day of the month following the expiration of the registration and license to be renewed. This section does not prevent the department from refusing to license a vehicle.

(C) The department shall not issue a refund of the biennial registration fee to a person who has paid the fee and moves out of the State during the biennial registration period.

SECTION 56-3-255. Requirement of evidence of payment of federal use tax.

The department shall require evidence of the payment of the use tax imposed by Section 4481 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 prior to issuing vehicle registration and plates for those vehicles for which the taxes are required.

SECTION 56-3-350. Grounds for refusing to register and license or transfer registration of vehicle.

The department shall refuse to register and license or transfer registration upon one or more of the following grounds:

(1) The application contains a false or fraudulent statement or the applicant has not furnished required information or reasonable additional information requested by the department.

(2) The vehicle is mechanically unfit or unsafe to be operated or moved upon the highways.

(3) The department has reasonable ground to believe the vehicle is stolen or the registration and licensing or transfer is a fraud against the rightful owner of the vehicle.

(4) The registration and license of the vehicle is canceled, suspended, or revoked as provided in this chapter or other motor vehicle laws of this State.

(5) The required fee has not been paid.

(6) For a vehicle purchased outside this State, satisfactory evidence of payment of the South Carolina use tax has not been presented.

SECTION 56-3-360. Suspension of registration of vehicle reported stolen or converted.

The department may suspend the registration of a vehicle whose theft or conversion is reported to it pursuant to Section 56-19-810 or Section 56-19-820.

SECTION 56-3-375. [1978 Act No. 421 Section 1; 1978 Act No. 470 Section 1; 1992 Act No. 278,Section 2] Repealed by 1993 Act No. 164, Section 2200, eff July 1, 1993.

SECTION 56-3-376. Establishment of system of registration of motor vehicles on monthly basis; assignment of annual registration periods.

All vehicles except those vehicles designated in Section 56-3-780 are designated as distinct classifications and must be assigned an annual registration period as follows:

Classification (1). Vehicles for which the biennial registration fee is one-hundred sixty dollars or more. The department may register and license a vehicle for which the biennial registration fee is one-hundred sixty dollars or more or for a semiannual or one-half year upon application to the department by the owner and the payment of one-fourth of the specified biennial fee. Biennial registrations and licenses expire at midnight on the last day of the twenty-fourth month for the period for which they were issued. Semiannual or half-year registrations and licenses expire at midnight of the sixth month for the period for which they were issued and no person shall drive, move, or operate a vehicle upon a highway after the expiration of the registration and license until the vehicle is registered and licensed for the then current period. Trucks, truck tractors, or road tractors with an empty or unloaded weight of over five thousand pounds or less, or gross vehicle weight of eight thousand pounds or less also must be placed in this classification but may not be registered for less than a full biennial period.

Classification (2). Other vehicles. All other vehicles except those vehicles described in classification (1) of this section are assigned a staggered biennial registration which expires on the last day of the month for the period for which they were issued.

Notwithstanding the registration periods provided in this section, upon appropriate notice, the department may revise the established renewal dates to allow renewals to be assigned an expiration date pursuant to a staggered monthly basis.

SECTION 56-3-377. Vehicles to be assigned biennial registration period; expiration twenty-four months from month of issuance.

All vehicles described in Section 56-3-210 must be assigned a biennial registration period which expires twenty-four months from the month in which the registration first was issued.

SECTION 56-3-378. Establishment of system of registration of motor vehicles on monthly basis; issuance of registration and license plate for period of five years.

The department may issue at the request of the owner of a vehicle as defined in Section 56-3-700 of the 1976 Code a registration and license plate for a registration period of five years if the required five-year registration and license fee is paid to the department. The transfer of registration and license plates for vehicles in this classification shall be as provided in Sections 56-3-1260, 56-3-1270, 56-3-1280, 56-3-1290 and 56-3-1300. The department shall require the vehicle owner to remit any additional registration fee if an increase in the registration fee is subsequently enacted. The failure of an owner to pay such fee shall result in the cancellation of the registration and license plate.

SECTION 56-3-385. Extension of deadline where last day for obtaining license plate or renewal sticker falls on Saturday, Sunday or holiday.

When the last day of a month on which a person may obtain his biennial motor vehicle license plate or renewal sticker without penalty falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or state holiday, the person has until the end of the next working day immediately following that Saturday, Sunday, or state holiday to obtain his license plate or renewal sticker without penalty.

SECTION 56-3-390. Penalties for fraudulent applications and misrepresentation of facts.

Any person who (a) fraudulently uses or gives a false or fictitious name or address in any application required to be made under this chapter except for registration, (b) knowingly makes a false statement in any such application or (c) knowingly conceals a material fact in any such application shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall upon conviction be punished as herein provided. Any person who shall operate or any owner who shall permit the operation or movement of any vehicle registered and licensed under a violation of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished as herein provided.

SECTION 56-3-400. Reciprocity in registration and licensing of automobile utility trailers; "automobile utility trailer" defined.

The term "automobile utility trailer" when used in Sections 56-3-400 to 56-3-420 shall mean and include any trailers suitable for towing by a private passenger automobile, the use of which is confined to the private hauling of personal property for intrastate or interstate use, or combined intrastate and interstate use. The term "automobile utility trailer" shall not include trailers or semitrailers rented or leased to any person for use by such lessee in the furtherance of or as an incident to any commercial or industrial enterprise in interstate commerce or for the use in connection with any business or occupation carried on in interstate commerce by the lessee.

SECTION 56-3-410. Reciprocity in registration and licensing of automobile utility trailers; procedures; extension of registration.

For the purpose of interstate and combined interstate and intrastate reciprocity provisions of Sections 56-3-400 to 56-3-420, automobile utility trailers shall be extended full reciprocity, provided that every person who owns automobile utility trailers within this State and who is engaged in the business of leasing such trailers for use in interstate, intrastate or combined interstate and intrastate commerce (a) registers and licenses all automobile utility trailers owned by him in the state wherein the owner actually resides and such state affords equal recognition, either in fact or in law, to such trailers licensed in this State or (b) registers and licenses in this State the average number of automobile utility trailers operated in and through this State during the licensing year. In such instances, the person shall register with the Department the fact that he is engaged in such business and shall file data in such form and verified in such manner as shall be required by the Department, estimating the average number of automobile utility trailers he leases for operation in and through the State during the licensing year. The Department shall then determine the average number of such trailers operated in and through this State during the licensing year and such determination shall be final. Upon payment of the fee required by Section 56-3-130, the Department shall, subject to the provisions of Section 56-3-420, issue registration certificates and license plates for the average number of such automobile utility trailers as above determined and that number of trailers shall display the license plates. Thereafter, all trailers properly identified and licensed in any state, territory, province, country or the District of Columbia and belonging to such person shall be permitted to operate in this State on an interstate, intrastate or combined interstate and intrastate basis; provided, that such trailers are towed by private passenger cars duly registered and licensed in this State or in another state and legally operated in this State under the reciprocity laws of this State.

SECTION 56-3-420. [1962 Code Section 46-99; 1957 (50) 551; 1993 Act No. 164, Part II,Section 22F, eff July 1, 1993] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-430. Cities between 55,000 and 70,000 shall not require local licenses or charge inspection or registration fees.

It shall be unlawful for any city of this State having a population of fifty-five thousand or more but less than seventy thousand directly or indirectly to require any license, registration plate or other identification tag of or for motor-driven vehicles other than required by the laws of the State relating to motor vehicles or to charge or accept any fee or compensation for the inspection or registration of any motor-driven vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-440. Cities of 70,000 or more may require local license.

Cities having a population of seventy thousand or more may require the annual registration with the city treasurer of all motor vehicles owned by residents of such cities and may issue annually a sticker, seal, card or a plate of metal or other material without fee or charge, as evidence of such registration, and require its attachment to, and its display upon, such vehicles. Such cities may also require as a condition precedent to such registration the payment of any city taxes then due and payable thereon and may provide by ordinance that the operation on the streets of such cities of any such motor vehicle without the attachment and display thereon of such sticker, seal, card or plate shall be unlawful and impose a penalty for the violation of such ordinance not exceeding a fine of one hundred dollars or imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 4.

RELEASE OF LICENSING AND REGISTRATION INFORMATION

SECTION 56-3-510. Forms.

Department records relating to the registration and licensing of motor vehicles must be released only as provided in this article. A person who requests registration and licensing information must submit the request on a form provided by the department. A completed form must:

(1) contain the name and address of the person making the request, the date of the request, the reason for the request, and a statement certifying that the information requested will not be used for a purpose related to telephone marketing or telephone solicitation; and

(2) be signed by the person making the request.

SECTION 56-3-520. Retention of forms.

(A) The department must retain a request made pursuant to Section 56-3-510 for five years from the date of its submission.

(B) Upon a person's written request, the department must release a copy of all request forms relating to the person's records.

SECTION 56-3-530. Fees.

The department may charge a fee for releasing information pursuant to this article. The department must promulgate regulations:

(1) providing a procedure whereby persons making repetitive requests may maintain an account with the department for the payment of fees incurred in the production of requested records;

(2) providing a procedure for electronic processing of requests; and

(3) providing for appropriate security measures to ensure that records are released only to the person identified as making the request.

SECTION 56-3-540. Use of records; opt-out from surveys, marketing and solicitations.

The department shall implement methods and procedures to ensure that:

(1) individuals are provided an opportunity, in a clear and conspicuous manner, to opt-out and prohibit the use of motor vehicle record information about them for distribution for surveys, marketing, and solicitations; and

(2) surveys, marketing, and solicitations will not be directed at those individuals who have requested in a timely fashion that they not be directed at them.

SECTION 56-3-545. Sale of Social Security number or driver's license photograph or signature.

The Department of Public Safety may not sell, provide, or otherwise furnish to a private party Social Security numbers, copies of photographs, or signatures, whether digitized or not, taken for the purpose of a driver's license or personal identification card. A Social Security number, photograph, signature, or digitized image from a driver's license or personal identification card is not a public record.

ARTICLE 5.

REGISTRATION AND LICENSE FEES

SECTION 56-3-610. Biennial payment of registration and license fees required.

The owner of every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, and special mobile equipment vehicle required to be registered and licensed under this chapter shall pay to the department at the time of registering and licensing the vehicle and biennially after that time registration and license fees as set forth in this article.

SECTION 56-3-620. Fees for handicapped persons or persons of certain ages for private passenger motor vehicle and property-carrying vehicles weighing six thousand pounds or less.

(A) For persons sixty-five years of age or older or persons who are handicapped, as defined in Section 56-3-1950, the biennial registration fee for every private passenger motor vehicle, excluding trucks, is twenty dollars.

(B) Beginning July 1, 1987, for persons under the age of sixty-five years the biennial registration fee for every private passenger motor vehicle, excluding trucks, is twenty-four dollars.

(C) For persons sixty-five years of age or older, the biennial registration fee for a property-carrying vehicle with a gross weight of six thousand pounds or less is thirty dollars.

(D) For persons who are sixty-four years of age, the biennial registration fee for a private passenger motor vehicle, excluding trucks, is twenty-two dollars.

(E) Applicable truck fees, established by Section 56-3-660, are not negated by this section.

SECTION 56-3-625. Expenditure of revenue derived from fee increases.

The amount of revenue derived from the fee increases established in Section 42, Part II, 1986 Act 540 which exceeds the revenue generated pursuant to Sections 56-3-620, 56-3-760, and 56-19-420 of the 1976 Code prior to July 1, 1986 shall be expended by the department to improve access routes to distressed and impacted areas of the State.

SECTION 56-3-630. Vehicles classified as passenger motor vehicles.

The department shall classify as a private passenger motor vehicle every motor vehicle, except a motorcycle, motorcycle three-wheel vehicle, or motor-driven cycle, which is designed, used, and maintained for the transportation of ten or fewer persons and trucks having an empty weight of six thousand pounds or less and a gross weight of nine thousand pounds or less. The department shall classify a three-wheel vehicle by the manufacturer's statement of origin for the vehicle's initial registration. For subsequent registration, the department shall classify the three-wheel vehicle by its title document. This section does not relieve or negate any applicable fees required under Section 56-3-660.

SECTION 56-3-640. Fees for common carrier passenger vehicles; vehicles so classified; determining vehicle weight.

(A) For every common carrier passenger vehicle the biennial registration and license fee is according to weight:

(1) not over 2000 pounds: $18.00;

(2) 2001 to 2500 pounds: $24.00;

(3) 2501 to 3000 pounds: $30.00;

(4) 3001 to 3500 pounds: $36.00;

(5) 3501 to 4000 pounds: $42.00;

(6) 4001 to 4500 pounds: $48.00;

(7) 4501 to 5000 pounds: $54.00;

(8) over 5000 pounds: $54.00 plus $6.00 for each 500 pounds' weight or fraction over 5000 pounds.

(B) The department must include in this classification every motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer designed, used, or maintained for the transportation of persons for compensation as a regular business. This classification does not include a trackless trolley bus.

(C) The manufacturer's rating on the weight of a vehicle must be accepted as the weight of the vehicle for the purpose of fixing the license fee under this section.

SECTION 56-3-650. Optional fees for bus companies operating in interstate and intrastate commerce; computation; retention of records; display of license plates.

In order for inter-city bus companies operating fleets both in inter and intra state commerce in South Carolina to more efficiently dispatch individual buses in such fleets from one state to another, any such inter-city bus company operating a fleet of ten or more buses of thirty or more passenger capacity each may comply with the license requirements of this chapter by paying an in lieu license fee to the department. Such fee shall be an amount equivalent to an annual fee of two hundred dollars per bus, with the number of buses or fractions thereof determined by dividing the company's total bus travel mileage in this State in any one license year by forty thousand miles. Such an inter-city bus company shall declare at the beginning of each license year prior to May first respectively of each year the mileage its fleet operated in this State during the preceding calendar year, and shall pay to the department a total annual license fee for all such buses computed in accordance with this section. Any bus company licensed pursuant to this section must retain and hold, subject to audit by the department, for a period of at least four years all records used in computing the total mileage operated in the State during each calendar year. Bus companies electing to license under this provision shall not be required to display license plates as otherwise required by this chapter on the buses operated in South Carolina, but they shall have the option of displaying license plates on buses where such license plates are specifically identified with specific buses.

SECTION 56-3-660. Fees for self-propelled property carrying vehicles; determination of vehicle gross weight; registration of apportionable vehicle for payment of one-half of State's portion of license fee.

(A) The determination of gross vehicle weight to register and license self-propelled property carrying vehicles is the empty weight of the vehicle or combination of vehicles and the heaviest load to be transported by the vehicle or combination of vehicles as declared by the registered owner. All determinations of weight must be made in units of one thousand pounds or major fraction of one thousand pounds. The declared gross vehicle weight applies to all self-propelled property carrying vehicles operating in tandem with trailers or semitrailers except that the gross weight of a trailer or semitrailer is not required to be included when the operation is to be in tandem with a self-propelled property carrying vehicle licensed for six thousand pounds or less gross weight, and the gross vehicle weight of the combination does not exceed nine thousand pounds. The department may register and license a vehicle of this classification for which the biennial registration and license fee is one-hundred and sixty dollars or more for an annual or one-year period beginning on April first and ending on March thirty-first of the next year upon application to the department by the owner and the payment of one-half the specified biennial fee or for a semiannual or one-half year beginning on April first and ending on September thirtieth of the same year upon application to the department by the owner and the payment of the appropriate fees. The registration and license fee for vehicles in this classification which are registered for the remaining twenty-four months or less of the twenty-four month biennial period or for the eleven months or less of the twelve-month year ending on March thirty-first or the remaining five months or less for the one-half period ending on September thirtieth is the proportionate part of the specified biennial fee for the remainder of the twenty-four month period or year or one-half year based on one twenty-fourth of the specified twenty-four-month fee for each month or part of a month remaining in the biennial registration period or license year or one-half year. No proportionate fee may be reduced lower than ten dollars. A person making application for a registration and license for a motor vehicle of this classification shall declare the true unloaded or empty weight of the vehicle.

(B) The biennial fees for the gross vehicle weight are :

(1) not over 4,000 pounds: $ 30.00;

(2) 4,001 to 5,000 pounds: $ 40.00;

(3) 5,001 to 6,000 pounds: $ 60.00;

(4) 6,001 to 7,000 pounds: $ 70.00;

(5) 7,001 to 8,000 pounds: $ 80.00;

(6) 8,001 to 9,000 pounds: $ 90.00;

(7) 9,001 to 10,000 pounds: $ 100.00;

(8) 10,001 to 11,000 pounds: $ 110.00;

(9) 11,001 to 12,000 pounds: $ 120.00;

(10) 12,001 to 13,000 pounds: $ 130.00;

(11) 13,001 to 14,000 pounds: $ 140.00;

(12) 14,001 to 15,000 pounds: $ 150.00;

(13) 15,001 to 16,000 pounds: $ 184.00;

(14) 16,001 to 17,000 pounds: $ 195.50;

(15) 17,001 to 18,000 pounds: $ 207.00;

(16) 18,001 to 19,000 pounds: $ 218.50;

(17) 19,001 to 20,000 pounds: $ 260.00;

(18) 20,001 to 21,000 pounds: $ 273.00;

(19) 21,001 to 22,000 pounds: $ 308.00;

(20) 22,001 to 23,000 pounds: $ 322.00;

(21) 23,001 to 24,000 pounds: $ 360.00;

(22) 24,001 to 25,000 pounds: $ 375.00;

(23) 25,001 to 26,000 pounds: $ 392.00;

(24) 26,001 to 27,000 pounds: $ 408.00;

(25) 27,001 to 28,000 pounds: $ 424.00;

(26) 28,001 to 29,000 pounds: $ 438.00;

(27) 29,001 to 30,000 pounds: $ 452.00;

(28) 30,001 to 31,000 pounds: $ 468.00;

(29) 31,001 to 32,000 pounds: $ 482.00;

(30) 32,001 to 33,000 pounds: $ 498.00;

(31) 33,001 to 34,000 pounds: $ 514.00;

(32) 34,001 to 35,000 pounds: $ 528.00;

(33) 35,001 to 36,000 pounds: $ 544.00;

(34) 36,001 to 37,000 pounds: $ 558.00;

(35) 37,001 to 38,000 pounds: $ 572.00;

(36) 38,001 to 39,000 pounds: $ 588.00;

(37) 39,001 to 40,000 pounds: $ 604.00;

(38) 40,001 to 41,000 pounds: $ 616.00;

(39) 41,001 to 42,000 pounds: $ 634.00;

(40) 42,001 to 43,000 pounds: $ 650.00;

(41) 43,001 to 44,000 pounds: $ 664.00;

(42) 44,001 to 45,000 pounds: $ 680.00;

(43) 45,001 to 46,000 pounds; $ 694.00;

(44) 46,001 to 47,000 pounds: $ 708.00;

(45) 47,001 to 48,000 pounds: $ 724.00;

(46) 48,001 to 49,000 pounds: $ 740.00;

(47) 49,001 to 50,000 pounds: $ 754.00;

(48) 50,001 to 51,000 pounds: $ 770.00;

(49) 51,001 to 52,000 pounds: $ 784.00;

(50) 52,001 to 53,000 pounds: $ 800.00;

(51) 53,001 to 54,000 pounds: $ 814.00;

(52) 54,001 to 55,000 pounds: $ 830.00;

(53) 55,001 to 56,000 pounds: $ 844.00;

(54) 56,001 to 57,000 pounds: $ 860.00;

(55) 57,001 to 58,000 pounds: $ 876.00;

(56) 58,001 to 59,000 pounds: $ 890.00;

(57) 59,001 to 60,000 pounds: $ 906.00;

(58) 60,001 to 61,000 pounds: $ 920.00;

(59) 61,001 to 62,000 pounds: $ 934.00;

(60) 62,001 to 63,000 pounds: $ 950.00;

(61) 63,001 to 64,000 pounds: $ 964.00;

(62) 64,001 to 65,000 pounds: $ 1,132.00;

(63) 65,001 to 66,000 pounds: $ 1,148.00;

(64) 66,001 to 67,000 pounds: $ 1,166.00;

(65) 67,001 to 68,000 pounds: $ 1,182.00;

(66) 68,001 to 69,000 pounds: $ 1,200.00;

(67) 69,001 to 70,000 pounds: $ 1,218.00;

(68) 70,001 to 71,000 pounds: $ 1,236.00;

(69) 71,001 to 72,000 pounds: $ 1,336.00;

(70) 72,001 to 72,000 pounds: $ 1,354.00;

(71) 73,001 to 74,000 pounds: $ 1,374.00;

(72) 74,001 to 75,000 pounds: $ 1,392.00;

(73) 75,001 to 76,000 pounds: $ 1,410.00;

(74) 76,001 to 77,000 pounds: $ 1,516.00;

(75) 77,001 to 78,000 pounds: $ 1,538.00;

(76) 78,001 to 79,000 pounds: $ 1,558.00;

(77) 79,001 to 80,000 pounds: $ 1,600.00;

No vehicle in excess of 80,000 pounds will be registered.

(C) Notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter, the department may enter into agreement with other states in a registration and license reciprocal agreement known as the international registration plan and the registration and license required in this section may be apportioned for vehicles which qualify and are licensed in accordance with the provisions of the plan.

(D) A vehicle registered in this State and found to be operating in excess of the gross vehicle weight for which it is currently registered may be impounded by the department until all registration fees, permit fees, or penalties are paid or satisfactory arrangements for payment of the fees and/or penalties to the department have been made.

(E) The department may register an apportionable vehicle for the payment of one-half of this State's portion of the license fee for a vehicle whose portion owed to this State exceeds eight hundred dollars. The department may require any information necessary to complete the transaction.

(F) Upon evidence of reliability in the payment of its obligations, the department may accept the check of a motor carrier company in payment of applicable fees and assessments.

SECTION 56-3-665. Requirement of proof of payment of federal use tax.

The department shall require evidence of the payment of the use tax imposed by Section 4481 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 for those vehicles to which the taxes are required.

SECTION 56-3-670. Fees for farm truck licenses; violations; penalties.

(A) For the purpose of this section "farm truck" is defined as a truck used exclusively by the owner for agricultural, horticultural, and dairying operations or livestock and poultry raising. However, farm trucks with an empty weight of less than 7,500 pounds may be used for ordinary domestic purposes and general transportation but must not be used to transport persons or property for hire.

(B) The department shall issue to bona fide farmers special farm vehicle licenses on an annual basis for farm trucks for a fee as follows according to the gross vehicle weight of the truck:

Gross Vehicle Weight Fee



(1) Up to 26,499 pounds $12.00

(2) 26,500 to 32,499 pounds $15.00

(3) 32,500 to 42,500 pounds $30.00

(4) 42,501 to 52,500 pounds $60.00

(5) 52,501 to 62,500 pounds $80.00

(6) 62,501 to 72,500 pounds $100.00

(7) 72,501 to 80,000 pounds $120.00.

Nothing in this section exempts farm vehicles from gross weight-axle requirements contained in Section 56-5-4140.

(C) A person who is issued a farm license plate for the purpose defined in this section and uses the license plate for purposes other than those defined is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

SECTION 56-3-700. Fee for trailers, semitrailers and pole trailers; exemptions.

For every trailer, semitrailer, or pole trailer, not exempted by Section 56-3-120(5), the biennial registration fee is twenty dollars. The department must include in this classification every trailer, semitrailer, or pole trailer designed for carrying property, except house trailers, utility trailers, those trailers and semitrailers exempted by Section 56-3-120(5), and boat trailers as otherwise provided in this article. Semitrailers or pole trailers weighing less than five hundred pounds with load capacity of less than one thousand pounds and trailers and semitrailers with an actual unloaded weight of fifteen hundred pounds or less and carrying a load capacity not exceeding twenty-five hundred pounds and which are designed, adapted, and used exclusively for agriculture, horticulture, or livestock-raising operations or for lifting or carrying an implement of husbandry need not be registered or licensed.

SECTION 56-3-710. Fees for house trailers.

For every house trailer the biennial fee is twelve dollars. The department shall classify as a "house trailer" every trailer or semitrailer which is designed, constructed, and equipped as a dwelling, living abode, or sleeping place, permanently or temporarily, and is equipped for use as a conveyance on streets or highways or a trailer or semitrailer of similar nature whose chassis and exterior shell is designed and constructed for use permanently or temporarily for advertising, sales, display, or promotion of merchandise or services or for another commercial purpose, except the transportation of property for hire or the transportation of property for distribution by a private carrier. The department may not license and register a house trailer which exceeds the permissible size limitations prescribed in Sections 56-5-4030, 56-5-4060, and 56-5-4070, but the house trailers permitted to be moved over the highways by the department under special permits issued pursuant to Sections 57-3-130 to 57-3-190 shall pay to the Department of Transportation a fee of five dollars a trip.

SECTION 56-3-720. Fees for camper or travel trailers; distinctive tag.

For every camper or travel trailer the biennial registration fee is ten dollars. The department must include in this classification every trailer not more than thirty-five feet long and eight feet wide primarily equipped, designed, converted, or used for private living quarters and towed by a motor vehicle. The department shall design a distinctive tag which must be displayed on the exterior of the rear of the trailer in a conspicuous place.

SECTION 56-3-730. Owner shall select load capacity classification; change thereof.

The owner of a vehicle classified under Sections 56-3-130 and 56-3-660 to 56-3-710, may register and license such vehicle for the desired load capacity classification, and a previous registration and license for a particular load capacity classification for a particular vehicle shall not be deemed as fixing the load capacity classification on such vehicle for future registrations and licenses or renewals. Also the owner may have the privilege at any time during a then current registration and license period to raise the load classification for a vehicle by making application therefor to the Department and paying the required increased differential in fee, but the owner may not have the privilege of reducing the load classification for a particular vehicle until the expiration of the then current registration and license period.

SECTION 56-3-740. Fees for trackless trolley buses.

For every trackless trolley bus the biennial registration fee is four hundred dollars for each bus weighing not over fifteen thousand pounds, exclusive of passengers, and for each bus weighing more than fifteen thousand pounds, exclusive of passengers, an additional forty dollars for each additional one thousand pounds of weight or fraction. The department must include under this classification every bus propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires but not operated upon rails.

SECTION 56-3-750. Fees for special mobile equipment vehicles.

For every special mobile equipment vehicle not exempt from the payment of a biennial registration and license fee under Section 56-3-120 the biennial registration fee is ten dollars for each vehicle having a gross weight of not more than four thousand pounds, and for every vehicle having a gross weight of more than four thousand pounds, an additional eight dollars for each additional one thousand pounds of weight or fraction over four thousand pounds.

SECTION 56-3-760. Fees for motorcycles, motorcycle three-wheel vehicles and motor-driven cycles.

For every motorcycle, motorcycle three-wheel vehicle, or motor-driven cycle the biennial registration fee is ten dollars.

SECTION 56-3-770. Fees for vehicles equipped with solid tires.

The biennial registration and license fee for every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or special mobile equipment vehicle equipped with solid tires is double the biennial fee otherwise specified in this article.

SECTION 56-3-780. Permanent license plates and fees for vehicles of State or subdivisions thereof or Civil Air Patrol; transferability.

(A) Permanent license plates must be issued by the department for all motor vehicles operated by the State or its political subdivisions. The license fee, including registration, is two dollars. Permanent plates must bear the words "South Carolina", the number, and a prefix "SG", "RG", "CG", or "MG" to designate respectively state government, regional government, county government, or municipal government. The department may issue a permanent license plate to vehicles used by state or local law enforcement agencies. The fee for the permanent plate is two dollars. A decal may be issued to designate the law enforcement agency. The department may charge a reasonable fee to cover the cost of the decal.

(B) All other vehicles operated by the State or its subdivisions and the Civil Air Patrol must be registered and licensed for a biennial fee of two dollars and must be issued plates in accordance with Section 56-3-1710.

(C) Registration and licenses issued under this section are not transferable except to another agency or department of government.

SECTION 56-3-785. Issuance of permanent license plates to certain owners of trailers and semi-trailers; fees; design.

(A) Upon proper application, the department may issue a registration and license plate on a permanent basis for semitrailers, regular trailers, and utility trailers.

(B) The fee for the license is seventy-five dollars for each semitrailer, regular trailer, and utility trailer, and is not transferable. The fee must be paid in one sum. After the initial issuance of the license the owner shall remit annually to the department on a form furnished by the department a report of the units still in use and units which must be deleted and return the licenses issued to the units no longer in use. Failure to furnish required forms by the due date established by the department results in a fine not to exceed fifty dollars. A permanent license may be purchased for chassis, specially constructed to transport international shipping containers, without being required to furnish a South Carolina address if the chassis is not for domicile.

(C) The license plate must be the same size of regular license plates and design as specified by the department.

SECTION 56-3-790. Fees for certain motor vehicles used in rescue work.

The department shall issue a license upon the payment of a five dollar fee to any chartered volunteer rescue league in this State for any motor vehicle owned and operated by it solely for rescue work without charge.

SECTION 56-3-830. Postage charge.

The Department may charge an additional fee of fifteen cents postage for every license mailed to the owner.

SECTION 56-3-840. Delinquent registration and license penalties.

The owner of every vehicle required to be registered and licensed under the provisions of this chapter who fails to register and license the vehicle and pay the specified fees or renewal, when and as required, upon registering the vehicle shall pay to the department a delinquency penalty fee of ten dollars, if the owner is delinquent less than fifteen days. If the owner is delinquent by fifteen days but less than thirty days, he shall pay a delinquency penalty of twenty-five dollars. If the owner is delinquent by more than thirty days but less than ninety days, he shall pay a delinquency penalty fee of fifty dollars to the department. If the owner is delinquent by more than ninety days, he shall pay a delinquency penalty fee of seventy-five dollars to the department. However, there is no delinquency penalty fee for campers and travel trailers subject to the registration fee under Section 56-3-720.

A person who drives, moves, or operates on a highway a vehicle for which a registration and license are required but have not been obtained within thirty days of the date when required is guilty of a misdemeanor.

[Effective until July 1, 2001, this paragraph reads as follows:]

All monies collected pursuant to this section, not to exceed 2.7 million dollars or the actual revenues collected in fiscal year 1998-99, whichever is less, must be held in reserve for the department. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, these monies must be deposited to the credit of the department into a special fund in the office of the State Treasurer called the "Department of Public Safety Building Fund". The department must use these monies and other unobligated monies for the purpose of issuing revenue bonds or for entering into a lease purchase agreement for a headquarters building, including the renovation of existing facilities. All monies credited to the special account that exceed the funds necessary for the purposes authorized in this section must be used for other capital projects throughout the state. Projects other than the construction or purchase of a new headquarters building, including the expansion or renovation to the existing facility, must be approved by a joint resolution. The cost of a headquarters building must not exceed thirty million dollars.

[Effective July 1, 2001, this paragraph reads as follows:]

All monies collected pursuant to this section, not to exceed the actual revenues collected in fiscal year 1999-2000, must be annually deposited to a separate account and held in reserve for the department. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, these monies must be deposited to the credit of the department into a special fund in the office of the State Treasurer designated as the "Department of Public Safety Building Fund". The department must use these monies and other unobligated monies for the purpose of issuing revenue bonds or for entering into a lease purchase agreement for a headquarters facility, including the renovation of existing facilities. All monies credited to the fund that exceed the funds necessary for the purposes authorized in this section must be used for other capital projects throughout the state. The department is authorized to initiate and direct a capital project to purchase or construct a new headquarters facility. Projects funded under this section other than for the construction or purchase of a new headquarters facility, including but not limited to, the expansion or renovation of an existing facility, must be approved by a joint resolution provided that if the department employs a lease purchase agreement to build or purchase a new headquarters facility, the lease purchase agreement must be approved by the Budget and Control Board. The cost of a headquarters facility must not exceed thirty million dollars unless a parking facility or garage is required.

SECTION 56-3-860. Accepting uncertified checks for license fees.

The department may, in the discretion of the director of the department, accept uncertified checks of an applicant-owner in payment for license fees charged for the issuance of license plates for motor vehicles, trailers, semitrailers, pole trailers and motor vehicle dealers.

SECTION 56-3-870. Procedure if uncertified check is returned unpaid.

If an uncertified check is accepted by the Department as payment for the fees due on account of the issuance of license plates and such check is returned to the Department unpaid for any cause whatsoever, the Department may suspend or cancel the registration and license purchased by check and repossess the registration card, license plates or other documents issued by the Department, and the applicant-owner shall pay to the Department the amount of ten dollars to cover the cost of repossession and collection if the license and registration are suspended or cancelled.

SECTION 56-3-880. [1962 Code Section 46-49; 1952 Code Section 46-49; 1950 (46) 2203]Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-890. Refunds when application is refused or rejected; refund of fees collected in error.

Whenever any application made to the Department is accompanied by any fee as required by law and such application is refused or rejected, the fee shall be returned to the applicant. Whenever the Department, through error, collects any fee not required to be paid under this chapter or any amount over and above the required correct fee, such fee or amount shall be refunded to the person paying it upon the initiative of the Department or upon application therefor made within six months after the date of such payment or overpayment.

SECTION 56-3-900. Procedures for refund when vehicle is not used or is destroyed.

(A) When a vehicle is registered and licensed under this chapter and the required fee is paid but it has not been operated in this State or elsewhere as a vehicle registered and licensed under the laws of this State since the beginning of the registration and license period for which the registration and license fee was paid and a claim is filed with the department for a refund within ninety days after the date of the registration and license and the claim is supported by evidence of nonoperation satisfactory to the department and is accompanied by the return of the registration card and license plates, or satisfactory proof that the card or plates have been lost, the department may make refund to the original payer of the full amount of the biennial registration and license fee.

(B) When a vehicle is registered and licensed under this chapter and the required fee is paid and the vehicle is junked or totally destroyed during the registration and license period for which the fee was paid and a claim is filed with the department for refund within ninety days after the date the vehicle was junked or destroyed and the claim is supported by evidence satisfactory to the department and is accompanied by the return of the registration card and license plates or sufficient proof that the card or plates have been lost, the department may refund the proportionate part of the license and registration fee paid, based on one twelfth of the fee paid for every full calendar month remaining if the vehicle received an annual registration, one twenty-fourth of the fee paid for every full calendar month remaining if the vehicle received a biennial registration, and one-sixth of the fee paid for every full calendar month remaining if the vehicle received a six-month registration in the registration and license period. However, no refund of less than ten dollars may be made under this section.

(C) When a vehicle is sold and is licensed and registered with a South Carolina apportioned license plate and the required fee has been paid, the registrant may apply for a refund of the South Carolina apportioned fee based on the full months remaining in the license period within ninety days of the date of sale. Notification of the sale must be provided to the department along with the license plate and registration card. No refund may be made for less than ten dollars.

SECTION 56-3-905. Motor vehicle registration refund.

Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 56-3-900, when the owner or lessee of a motor vehicle or vehicle including, but not limited to, trailers and semitrailers, licensed and registered for a biennium pursuant to Section 56-3-253 surrenders the license plate and registration to the department in the first twelve months of the licensing period, the department shall refund to the owner or lessee an amount equal to one-half the registration fee paid on the vehicle. If the owner or lessee is simultaneously registering another vehicle, the refund amount, at the owner's or lessee's option, may be applied against the registration fee due.

SECTION 56-3-910. Disposition of fees and penalties.

(A) All fees and penalties collected by the department under the provisions of this chapter must be distributed as provided in subsection (B) of this section except for fees and penalties collected pursuant to Sections 56-3-660 and 56-3-670 which must be placed in the state highway account of the South Carolina Transportation Infrastructure Bank and except for those fees and penalties which must be credited to a different account as otherwise provided for by law.

(B) Twenty percent of the fees and penalties collected pursuant to this chapter, except for those provided for separately in subsection (A) of this section, must be credited to the State Highway Fund of the Department of Transportation and eighty percent to the general fund of the State, beginning in fiscal year 2000-2001.

SECTION 56-3-920. Fees additional to public service fees.

The registration and license fees imposed by this article shall be in addition to any fees required by law to be paid to the Public Service Commission, and nothing in this chapter shall affect or impair the provisions of Chapter 23 of Title 58.

ARTICLE 6.

CORPORATE-OWNED FLEET MOTOR VEHICLES

SECTION 56-3-1010. Definitions.

As used in this article:

(1) "Fleet" means two hundred or more marked private passenger motor vehicles or property carrying vehicles with empty weight of not more than twenty-two thousand pounds and a gross vehicle weight of not more than twenty-six thousand pounds, owned or long-term leased by a corporation or other legal entity, and registered in this State pursuant to this article.

(2) "Marked vehicle" means a vehicle with a name, trademark, or logo located either on the sides or the rear of the vehicle in sharp contrast to the background and of a size, shape, and color that is legible during daylight hours from a distance of fifty feet.

SECTION 56-3-1020. Corporation or other entity may register vehicles as fleet on annual basis; special license plates and registration cards; application and fee.

A corporation or other legal entity may register its fleet on an annual basis so that the registration of all vehicles in the fleet expires in the same month instead of staggered vehicle registration. The month of expiration must be approved by the department. The department may issue special license plates and registration cards for fleet motor vehicles upon application in a manner determined by the department. The application must be approved if it contains the information necessary for qualification as a fleet motor vehicle, provides a list of all vehicles to be included in the fleet, and includes payment of a filing fee of one hundred dollars. The filing fee is in addition to the registration fees required by this chapter. The department may authorize select fleet operators to issue special license plates and registration cards for their own fleet vehicles.

SECTION 56-3-1030. Fleet registration card to be carried and made available to law enforcement officers; license plate to be displayed.

Upon approval of the application for fleet registration, the director shall issue a fleet registration card and license plate for each of the qualified vehicles in the fleet. The fleet registration card must be carried in the vehicle at all times and made available to a law enforcement officer on demand. The license plate must be displayed in the manner prescribed by the department.

SECTION 56-3-1040. Fees for private passenger motor vehicles and property-carrying vehicles; vehicle added to fleet during registration year.

The fee for private passenger motor vehicles registered as part of a fleet under the provisions of this article is the same fee imposed by Section 56-3-620. The fee for property-carrying vehicles registered as part of a fleet under the provisions of this article is the same fee imposed by Section 56-3-660. A vehicle added to the fleet during the registration year must be registered in accordance with the provisions of this article. The fee for licensing and registration may be prorated as prescribed by the department.

SECTION 56-3-1050. Renewal of fleet registration; deletion of vehicle from fleet.

Upon renewal of the fleet registration, the department shall require payment of full licensing fees for every vehicle registered in this preceding year unless the vehicle has been properly deleted from the fleet.

To delete a vehicle from the fleet, the fleet registration card and the fleet license plate must be surrendered to the department. If the card or license plate is lost or stolen, the person registering the fleet shall submit a sworn statement giving the circumstances for the inability to surrender the card or license plate.

ARTICLE 7.

FREE VEHICULAR REGISTRATION FOR DISABLED VETERANS

SECTION 56-3-1110. Special license plate for wartime disabled veteran.

(A) A wartime disabled veteran who is entitled to compensation for the loss, or loss of use of one or both legs or arms, or the permanent impairment of vision in both eyes to a degree as to constitute virtual blindness and is also entitled to a special monthly statutory award by reason thereof or any South Carolina veteran classified as totally and permanently disabled due to service-connected disabilities as determined from medical records on file with the Veterans Administration may make application for registration and license of his owned or leased private passenger motor vehicle to the department without accompanying such application with the usual fee for registration and license of a vehicle of similar type. The department shall issue such license plates upon the receipt of such application in such form as may be required. A veteran who is issued a license plate under the provisions of this section shall not be required to reapply so long as he owns or leases the vehicle for which the plate is issued and a surviving spouse of such a veteran is also eligible to obtain such plate so long as the surviving spouse does not remarry.

(B) If a person who qualifies for the special license plate issued under this section also qualifies for the handicapped license plate issued pursuant to Section 56-3-1960(1), then the license plate issued pursuant to this section shall also include the distinguishing symbol used on license plates issued pursuant to Section 56-3-1960(1). Until the department determines that the license plate shall be redesigned to include the symbol, the department shall develop a decal using a distinguishing symbol to be placed on the license plate which shall be issued to all persons who request the license plate authorized by this subsection, including persons for whom license plates were issued pursuant to this section on the effective date of this subsection.

SECTION 56-3-1120. Issuance of special license tag.

The Department may issue a special license tag with a special number showing that such license tag was issued to a disabled American veteran.

SECTION 56-3-1130. Penalties.

It is a misdemeanor for anyone to violate any of the provisions of this article. Every person convicted of a misdemeanor for the violation of any provision of this article shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 8.

FREE VEHICULAR REGISTRATION FOR FORMER PRISONERS OF WAR

SECTION 56-3-1150. Free vehicular registration for former prisoners of war.

A member or former member of the armed forces who was a prisoner of war (POW) in World War I, World War II, the Korean Conflict, or the Vietnam Conflict and who is a legal resident of this State may make application for registration and licensing of his private passenger motor vehicle to the department without paying the usual fee for registration and licensing of a vehicle of similar type. The department shall issue the license plate or the revalidation sticker upon receipt of the application in a form required by the department. The provisions of this section do not apply if the former POW applies for a special personalized motor vehicle license plate under the provisions of Section 56-3-2010. The department may issue or transfer a special POW motor vehicle license plate to a vehicle owned or leased by a former POW or his surviving spouse. A former POW who is issued a license plate under the provisions of this section or surviving spouse is not required to reapply so long as the former POW or surviving spouse owns the vehicle for which the plate is issued. The plate shall bear the words "South Carolina", the number, and prefix "POW".

The surviving spouse of a former POW after notice to the department may retain the plate and is entitled to all the privileges of the POW for the lifetime or until remarriage of the surviving spouse.

SECTION 56-3-1160. [1978 Act No. 446 Section 2; 1993 Act No. 181, Section 1368, eff July 1, 1993] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

ARTICLE 9.

LICENSE PLATES AND REGISTRATION CARDS GENERALLY

SECTION 56-3-1210. License plates shall be furnished by Department.

Beginning with the licensing year 1975-1976, the Department, upon registering and licensing a vehicle, shall issue to the owner one license plate. Every license plate shall remain the property of the State but shall be displayed on the vehicle as required by this chapter.

SECTION 56-3-1220. Municipalities and counties shall not issue plates.

No county or municipality shall issue a municipal or county license plate.

SECTION 56-3-1230. Specifications of license plates; periodic issuance of new plates; treatment with reflective material; issuance of revalidation stickers.

(A) License plates must be at least six inches wide and not less than twelve inches in length and must show in bold characters the year of registration, the serial number, the full name or the abbreviation of the name of the State, and other distinctive markings the department may consider advisable to indicate the class of the weight of the vehicle for which the license plate was issued. The plate must be of a strength and quality to provide a minimum service of five years. A new license plate including personalized and special plates must be provided by the department at intervals the department considers appropriate. License plates issued for vehicles in excess of twenty-six thousand pounds must be issued biennially, and no revalidation sticker may be issued for the plates. License plates issued as permanent may be revalidated and replaced at intervals determined by the department.

(B) The face of the license plate must be treated completely with a retroreflective material which increases the nighttime visibility and legibility of the plate. The department shall prepare the specifications for the retroreflective material. In those years in which a metal plate is not issued, a revalidation sticker with a distinctive serial number or other suitable means prescribed by the department must be issued and affixed in the space provided on the license plate assigned to the vehicle upon payment of the fee prescribed for registration and licensing, including fees for personalized or special license plates.

SECTION 56-3-1240. Display of license plates; missing plate.

License plates issued for motor vehicles must be attached to the outside rear of the vehicle, open to view, except that on truck tractors and road tractors the plates must be attached to the outside front of the vehicle. Every license plate, at all times, must be fastened securely in a horizontal and upright position to the vehicle for which it was issued so as to prevent the plate from swinging. The bottom of the plate must be at a height of not less than twelve inches from the ground in a place and position clearly visible as provided in Section 56-5-4530, and it must be maintained free from foreign materials and in a clearly legible condition. No other license plate, lighting equipment, except as permitted in Section 56-5-4530, tag, sign, monogram, tinted cover, or inscription of metal or other material may be displayed above, around, or upon the plate other than that which is authorized and issued by the department for the purpose of validating the plate. It is not unlawful to place a decal on the license plate if it does not obscure any letters or numbers. A motor vehicle owner may attach a trailer hitch to a motor vehicle provided the hitch does not obscure more than two inches of the license plate issued to the motor vehicle. It is unlawful to operate or drive a motor vehicle with the license plate missing and a person who is convicted for violating this section must be punished as provided by Section 56-3-2520.

SECTION 56-3-1250. Registration cards; contents, possession, and display; penalty.

The department, upon registering and licensing a vehicle, shall issue to the owner of the vehicle a registration card containing upon the face of the card the date issued, the name and address of the owner, including the county in which the owner resides, the registration and license number assigned to the vehicle, and that other description of the vehicle as may be determined by the department. The registration card must be delivered to the owner, and the owner, upon receipt of it, shall write his signature on it with pen and ink in the space provided. Every registration card must at all times be carried by the person driving or in control of the vehicle, who shall display it upon demand of a police officer or any other person authorized by law to examine registration cards.

Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 56-3-2520 or any other provisions of law, the penalty for the failure of the owner to sign the registration card with pen and ink in the space provided is a fine of ten dollars.

SECTION 56-3-1260. Procedures upon transfer of ownership of vehicle; notice to Department and disposition of plates.

Whenever the owner of a registered and licensed vehicle transfers his ownership therein, he shall immediately notify the Department in writing, giving the name and address of the new owner and the date of transfer. The license plate issued for the vehicle shall remain with the prior owner who, within thirty days of the transfer, either shall apply for the transfer of the plate pursuant to Section 56-3-1290 or shall return the plate to the Department; in either event the registration card shall be concurrently returned to the Department. If the vehicle is registered and licensed in the name of the State, any department, agency, or political subdivision of the State, or any department or agency of such a subdivision and a reduced registration and license fee has been paid, the owner shall return the registration card and the plate issued for the vehicle to the Department for cancellation, unless the transfer is made to another like agency qualified to obtain a registration and license of the vehicle at the reduced rate.

SECTION 56-3-1270. Procedures upon transfer of ownership of vehicle; application for transfer and issuance of new card; fee.

Whenever any person other than a duly licensed motor vehicle dealer receives by purchase, gift, trade, or otherwise a vehicle which was registered and licensed in this State for the then current registration and license year, the person so receiving such vehicle shall within thirty days after the transfer of ownership make application to the Department for registration and a license plate for such vehicle. The Department, upon being satisfied as to the genuineness and regularity of the application and with proof of the ad valorem tax being paid as required in Section 12-37-2610, shall issue a new registration card and license plate to the new owner.

SECTION 56-3-1280. Transfer of registered and licensed vehicle to licensed dealer.

Whenever a duly licensed motor vehicle dealer receives by purchase, gift, trade, or otherwise a vehicle which was registered and licensed in this State for the then current registration and license year, the dealer shall not be required to obtain a new registration and license plate, but it shall be optional.

SECTION 56-3-1290. Transfer of plates to another vehicle of same owner.

The department, upon application and the payment of a fee of three dollars, shall transfer the license plate previously assigned to an owner or lessee for one vehicle to another vehicle of the same general type owned or leased by the same person. Fees paid pursuant to this section must be deposited in the state general fund.

SECTION 56-3-1300. Change in name or address of owner; notice to Department.

Whenever any person after making application for or obtaining the registration and licensing of a vehicle shall move from the address named in the application or shown upon the registration card, such person shall within thirty days thereafter notify the Department in writing of his old address and new address and obtain from the Department a corrected registration card. Whenever the name of any person who has made application for or obtained the registration and licensing of a vehicle is thereafter changed by marriage or otherwise, such person shall within thirty days thereafter notify the Department of such former and new names and obtain from the Department a corrected registration card.

SECTION 56-3-1310. Procedures for replacement of lost or damaged registration cards or license plates.

In the event any registration card or license plate is lost, mutilated or becomes illegible, the owner or legal representative or successor in the interest of the owner of the vehicle for which it was issued, as shown by the records of the Department, shall immediately make application for and obtain a duplicate or substitute or a new registration and license under a new number, as determined to be most advisable by the Department, upon the applicant furnishing information satisfactory to the Department and the payment of any fee required under the provisions of Section 56-3-1320.

If a license plate is lost an application shall be made within ten days to the Department for replacement along with the required fee on forms prescribed by the Department. If a license plate is disfigured, mutilated or defaced to an extent to make it difficult to read, it shall be returned to the Department within ten days with an application for replacement and the required fee. The Department shall issue the replacement plate along with the current revalidation sticker.

SECTION 56-3-1320. Fees for replacement plates and cards.

The department shall charge a fee of six dollars for every license plate or revalidation sticker issued as a replacement. If a special personalized plate is replaced by a new special personalized plate, the department shall charge a fee in the same amount as the original fee. The department may not charge a fee for a registration card issued as a replacement for a registered and licensed vehicle, but a fee of one dollar must be charged for every duplicate registration card issued by the department.

SECTION 56-3-1330. Suspension, cancellation or revocation of cards, plates and the like.

The department may suspend, cancel, or revoke the registration and license of a vehicle, or the registration card, license plate, revalidation sticker, or other document issued by the department as authorized under this chapter in any of the following events when the:

(1) department determines to its satisfaction that such registration and license, registration card, license plate, revalidation sticker, or other document was fraudulently or erroneously issued;

(2) department determines to its satisfaction that a registered and licensed vehicle is mechanically unsafe or unfit to be operated or moved upon a highway;

(3) vehicle registered and licensed has been dismantled or wrecked;

(4) department determines that the required fee has not been paid and is not paid upon reasonable notice and demand;

(5) registration card, license plate, revalidation sticker, or other document is knowingly displayed upon a vehicle other than the one for which it was issued;

(6) department determines to its satisfaction that the owner has committed any offense under this chapter involving such registration card, license plate, revalidation sticker, or other document;

(7) department is so authorized under any other provisions of law.

SECTION 56-3-1340. Suspension of driver's license shall not automatically suspend registration or license plates.

The suspension of a license issued by the department to any person to operate a motor vehicle on the highways of the State shall not serve to automatically suspend the registration or license plates.

SECTION 56-3-1350. Return of suspended, cancelled, or revoked cards, plates and the like.

Whenever the department, as authorized under this chapter, cancels, suspends, or revokes the registration and license of a vehicle or the registration card, license plate, revalidation sticker, or other document issued by it pursuant to this chapter, the owner or person in possession of the document shall immediately return it to the department. The department in all cases shall furnish the person returning the document with a receipt indicating the date of surrender.

SECTION 56-3-1360. Use of license plate on vehicle other than vehicle for which plate was issued.

No person shall drive or operate any motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer or pole trailer on a highway displaying thereon a vehicle license plate which was issued for any other vehicle, and no person shall give, sell, lend, steal or borrow any vehicle license plate issued for a particular vehicle for the purpose of using such license plate on any other vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-1370. Defacement of license plates; seizure of misused, altered or defaced plates.

No person shall, with intent to defraud, deface or cause to be defaced in any manner any vehicle license plate issued by the Department. Any duly authorized agent of the Department may take up, repossess or recover any license plate if it is being improperly used or if it has been altered or defaced, and the Department may revoke the registration and license of the vehicle involved.

SECTION 56-3-1380. Return of registration card and license plates for wrecked or dismantled vehicle.

Any owner who dismantles or wrecks any vehicle registered and licensed under the provisions of this chapter shall forward to the Department the registration card and license plate and revalidation sticker last issued for such vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-1410. Fraudulent alteration or forgery of documents; use of altered or forged documents.

It is a misdemeanor, punishable as prescribed in this chapter, for any person (a) to alter, with fraudulent intent, any document issued by the Department as authorized under this chapter except a registration card or license plate, (b) to forge or counterfeit any such document issued or purported to have been issued by the Department or (c) to hold or use any such document, knowing it to have been altered, falsified or forged.

ARTICLE 11.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; AMATEUR RADIO OPERATORS

SECTION 56-3-1510. Special license plates authorized for amateur radio operators; fee.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to persons who hold unrevoked and unexpired amateur radio licenses of a renewable nature issued by the Federal Communications Commission for private passenger motor vehicles registered in the same name. The biennial fee for the special license plates is two dollars in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee prescribed by Article 5 of this chapter. Only one set of the special plates may be issued to a person.

SECTION 56-3-1520. Applications.

Applications for special license plates, as authorized under this article, must be made on forms provided by the department, contain proof satisfactory to the department that the applicant holds an unrevoked and unexpired amateur radio license, and state the call letters assigned to the applicant.

SECTION 56-3-1530. Design of plates; duration.

The special license plates must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates, upon which must be imprinted the official amateur radio call letters of the persons assigned by the Federal Communications Commission. The special plates are for biennial periods which expire twenty-four months from the month it is issued.

SECTION 56-3-1540. Transfer to another vehicle of same owner; display on unauthorized car; return on loss of radio license.

Special license plates issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made therefor and approved by the Department. It shall be unlawful for any person to whom such special license plates have been issued to knowingly permit such plates to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the Department. If the amateur radio license of a person holding a special license plate issued pursuant to this article shall be cancelled or rescinded by the Federal Communications Commission, such person shall immediately return the special license plate to the Department.

SECTION 56-3-1550. Penalties.

Any person violating any of the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

SECTION 56-3-1560. Article is cumulative.

The provisions of this article shall not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but shall be cumulative thereto.

ARTICLE 12.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES FOR EMERGENCY MEDICAL TECHNICIANS

SECTION 56-3-1610. Issuance of special license plates to emergency medical technicians; fee.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to emergency medical technicians for private passenger motor vehicles registered in the name of the technicians. The biennial fee for the special license plates is thirty dollars in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee prescribed by Article 5 of this chapter. Only one special plate may be issued to a person.

SECTION 56-3-1620. Applications.

Applications for special license plates, as authorized under this article, shall be made on forms provided by the Department and shall contain proof satisfactory to the Department that the applicant has been trained as an emergency medical technician by a hospital which conducts classes in emergency medical procedures and technology.

SECTION 56-3-1630. Size and design of plates; period of validity.

The special license plates must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates upon which must be imprinted the letters "EMT" and numbers the department may determine. The special plates are for biennial periods which expire twenty-four months from the month it is issued.

SECTION 56-3-1640. Transfer of plates; use on unauthorized vehicle; return of plates on revocation of technician's license.

A special license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made therefor and approved by the Department. It shall be unlawful for any person to whom such special license plate has been issued to knowingly permit such plate to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the Department. If the recognition of a licensee as a qualified emergency medical technician is revoked, such person shall immediately return the special license plate to the Department.

SECTION 56-3-1650. Unlawful acts; penalties.

Any person violating any of the provisions of this article or who fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for special license plates, as authorized in this article, conceals a material fact or otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

SECTION 56-3-1660. Effect of article on rest of chapter.

The provisions of this article shall not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but shall be cumulative thereto.

ARTICLE 13.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; PUBLICLY OWNED MOTOR VEHICLES

SECTION 56-3-1710. Department shall design and supply special license plate for publicly owned motor vehicles; unlawful to operate such motor vehicle without such plate.

The department shall design and supply, at an appropriate fee, a special license plate, or supplemental plate or attachment, for use on all publicly-owned motor vehicles operated by any department or institution of the State of South Carolina, or any of its political subdivisions. It shall be unlawful for any such publicly-owned vehicle to be operated in the State of South Carolina that does not carry such official emblem, marker, or plates. Provided, however, that this provision shall not apply to the automobile supplied for the Governor's personal use, automobiles supplied to law enforcement officers, when in the opinion of the chief of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division or the director of the department it is advisable that such automobiles not be so marked, nor to automobiles supplied to other state officials.

ARTICLE 14.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; MEMBERS OF THE UNITED STATES MILITARY RESERVE

SECTION 56-3-1750. Special license plates authorized for members of United States Military Reserve; fee.

The department may issue a special motor vehicle license plate to active members of the United States Air Force Reserve, United States Army Reserve, United States Coast Guard Reserve, United States Marine Corps Reserve, or United States Navy Reserve who are residents of the State for a private passenger motor vehicle registered in their respective names. The biennial fee for the special license plate is the regular motor vehicle registration fee plus the personalized license plate fee provided by Section 56-3-2020. Only one plate may be issued to a person.

SECTION 56-3-1760. Design of plates; duration.

The special license plate must be of the same size and general design as regular motor vehicle license plates. The department shall imprint the special license plates with the words "United States Military Reserve" or an abbreviation selected by the department, with numbers the department may determine. The license plate must be for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month it is issued.

SECTION 56-3-1770. Transfer to another vehicle of same owner; display on unauthorized car; return by holder ceasing to be member of United States Military Reserve.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and being approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the plate has been issued knowingly to permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department. If a holder of the plate ceases to be an active member of the United States Military Reserve he shall immediately return the plate to the department.

SECTION 56-3-1780. Relation to other provisions; penalties.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative to those other provisions. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact, or (c) otherwise commits fraud in the application or in the use of any special license plate issued is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days, or by both.

ARTICLE 15.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; MEMBERS OF NATIONAL GUARD

SECTION 56-3-1810. Number of special license plates to be issued to members of National Guard.

The number of plates that may be issued to members of the National Guard by the department shall equal the number of private passenger motor vehicles registered in such person's name in this State; provided, however, that the total number of such plates issued to any one person shall not exceed three. The department shall issue such plates for a particular private passenger motor vehicle registered in that person's name and such plates may only be transferred to another vehicle upon compliance with the provisions of Section 56-3-1830.

SECTION 56-3-1815. Special license plates authorized for retired members of National Guard.

The department may issue a special motor vehicle license plate to a retired member of the South Carolina National Guard and may issue a special motor vehicle license plate to a member of the South Carolina State Guard who is a resident of the State for a private passenger motor vehicle owned or leased by a member or a retiree only after the current stock of South Carolina Guard, National Guard, and South Carolina National Guard Retired license plates is exhausted.

SECTION 56-3-1820. Design of plates; denotation of status; fee; duration.

The special license plates must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates upon which must be imprinted the figure of the Minute Man" with numbers, or letters, or both, as determined by the department. The license plate must provide a space on the top of the plate to affix a decal indicating National Guard", Retired National Guard", Air National Guard", or State Guard". This license plate must be issued only after the current stock of South Carolina State Guard, National Guard, and South Carolina National Guard Retired license plates is exhausted. The biennial fee for the special license plate is the regular motor vehicle registration fee prescribed by Article 5 of this chapter. The plates must be issued for biennial periods November first to October thirty-first.

SECTION 56-3-1830. Transfer to another vehicle of same owner; display on unauthorized car; return by holder ceasing to be member of National Guard.

License plates issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned or leased by the same person upon application being made therefor and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the plates have been issued to knowingly permit them to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department. If a holder of a special license plate ceases to be an active member of the National Guard or the State Guard, he immediately shall return the plates to the department.

SECTION 56-3-1840. Penalties.

The provisions of this article shall not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but shall be cumulative thereto. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

ARTICLE 16.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS

SECTION 56-3-1850. Special license plate authorized for recipients of Medal of Honor; no fee.

The department shall provide, upon proper application being made, a distinctive permanent license plate to any resident of the State who is a recipient of the Medal of Honor, for use on a private passenger motor vehicle registered or leased in the recipient's name. There is no fee for the license plate but no recipient may receive a plate for more than one vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-1855. Special parking privileges for Medal of Honor recipients.

Any person who has been issued a license plate under the provisions of Section 56-3-1850 is allowed to park in metered or timed parking places without being subject to parking fees or fines. This section has no application to those areas or during those times in which the stopping, parking, or standing of all vehicles is prohibited or which are reserved for special types of vehicles. As a condition to this privilege, a vehicle must display a distinguishing license plate which is issued by the department for the vehicles registered to recipients of the Medal of Honor.

SECTION 56-3-1860. Design of plates.

The special plates shall be of the same size as regular motor vehicle license plates but shall be of such a distinctive design, and shall bear such letters and numerals, as the Department shall prescribe. No two recipients shall receive identical plates.

SECTION 56-3-1870. Transfer to another vehicle of same owner; prohibition on display on unauthorized car.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned or leased by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for a person to whom the plate has been issued to knowingly permit it to be displayed on a vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-1880. Cumulative nature of article; penalties.

The provisions of this article shall not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but shall be cumulative thereto. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

ARTICLE 17.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; DISABLED PERSONS REQUIRED TO USE WHEELCHAIRS

SECTION 56-3-1910. Issuance of license tag with special number or identification authorized for persons required to use wheelchairs or disabled by impairment in mobility.

Upon payment of the regular motor vehicle license fee, the department may issue a license tag with a special number or identification indicating that the tag was issued to a person (a) disabled by an impairment in the use of one or more limbs and required to use a wheelchair or (b) disabled by an impairment in mobility, but otherwise qualified for a driver's license as determined by the department. Each application for the license must be accompanied by the certificate of a licensed physician as defined in Section 40-47-5 as to the permanency of limb impairment or as to the severity or the permanency of mobility impairment.

The special license tag authorized by this section may also be issued for a vehicle of special design and equipment designed to transport a disabled person who meets the requirements of this section if the vehicle is owned and titled in the name of the disabled person or in the name of a member of his immediate family or for a vehicle used by an agency, organization, or facility that is designed to transport a handicapped or disabled person if the vehicle is titled in the name of the agency, organization, or facility. Proof that the agency, organization, or facility transports a handicapped or disabled person must be in a manner prescribed by the department. A certificate from a licensed physician is not required to apply for the special license tag.

ARTICLE 18.

FREE PARKING FOR HANDICAPPED PERSONS

SECTION 56-3-1950. Definitions.

As used in this article:

(1) "Handicapped" means a person who:

(a) has an obvious physical disability that impairs the ability to walk or requires the use of a wheelchair, braces, walkers, or crutches;

(b) has lost the use of one or both legs;

(c) suffers from lung disease to such an extent that he is unable to walk without the aid of a respirator;

(d) is disabled by an impairment in mobility; or

(e) is determined by the Social Security Administration or the Veterans Administration to be totally and permanently disabled.

(2) A licensed physician shall certify that the total and permanent disability substantially impairs the ability to walk, unless the applicant is an agency or organization complying with Section 56-3-1910.

SECTION 56-3-1960. Free parking for handicapped persons; issuance and display of placards.

(1) Any person who is handicapped as defined in this article must be allowed to park in metered or timed parking places without being subject to parking fees or fines. This section has no application to those areas or during those times in which the stopping, parking, or standing of all vehicles is prohibited or which are reserved for special types of vehicles. As a condition to this privilege, a vehicle must display a distinguishing license plate which must be issued by the department, pursuant to this section, Section 56-3-1910, or Section 56-3-1110, for vehicles registered to the disabled person. The license plate must be issued for the usual fee applicable to standard license plates, except that a person who qualifies for a license plate under this section and also qualifies as a disabled veteran under Section 56-3-1110 must be issued the license plate provided for in this section free of charge. Application must be made on a form prescribed by the department and applicants may apply by mail. Each application must be accompanied by a certificate from a licensed physician as defined in Section 40-47-5 that the applicant is handicapped as defined in this article and that the handicap is permanent. No applicant may be denied a license plate if the completed application is accompanied by a certificate from a licensed physician as defined in Section 40-47-5 as required by this subsection.

(2) An agency, organization, or facility that transports a disabled or handicapped person or any person who is handicapped as defined in this article may apply to the department for issuance of a temporary or permanent distinguishing placard to be designed by the department. The department, if necessary, may design another distinguishing placard for an agency, organization, or facility that is eligible for a placard, however, all placards must be at least three inches by nine and one-half inches in size and must hang from the rearview mirror of a vehicle or be displayed on the driver's side dashboard when there is no hanging apparatus. The placard must be used on vehicles transporting the disabled person in lieu of the distinguishing license plate issued pursuant to subsection (1) of this section. When the placard is displayed on the driver's side dashboard of a vehicle, all parking rights and privileges extended to vehicles displaying a distinguishing license plate issued pursuant to subsection (1) of this section are applicable to the vehicle. The department shall establish procedures for the issuance of distinguishing placards, and the procedures shall permit applicants to apply by mail. Each application must be accompanied by a certificate from a licensed physician as defined in Section 40-47-5 that the applicant is handicapped as defined in this article, except that a physician's certificate is not required for applications by an agency, organization, or facility which must include sufficient documentation as may be prescribed by the department that the applying agency, organization, or facility transports handicapped or disabled persons. The physician shall state on the certificate whether the applicant is handicapped temporarily or permanently. If the applicant is temporarily handicapped, the physician shall state the length of time for which the applicant is temporarily handicapped. A placard issued for a temporary disability is valid only for the anticipated length of time of the disability specified by the physician in the certificate. No applicant may be denied a placard if the applicant follows the procedures established by the department and if the completed application is accompanied by a certificate from a licensed physician as defined in Section 40-47-5, as required by this subsection. The department shall charge a fee of one dollar a placard and may issue two placards to an individual applicant upon request. An agency, organization, or facility may receive a placard for each vehicle registered upon payment of the appropriate fees.

The permanent placards may be issued and renewed only for a maximum period of four years renewable on the owner's birth date; however, placards issued to an agency, organization, or facility must be renewed every four years. The placards must be of a color as determined by the department which is easily recognizable by law enforcement personnel. The placard shall indicate on its face when it expires.

(3) A vehicle displaying an out-of-state handicapped license plate or placard or other evidence of handicap issued by the appropriate authority as determined by the department is entitled to the parking privileges provided for in this section.

SECTION 56-3-1965. Municipalities to designate parking spaces for handicapped persons.

Those municipalities having marked parking spaces shall provide appropriately designated space or spaces reserved for the parking of handicapped persons.

SECTION 56-3-1970. Unlawful acts; penalties.

It is unlawful to park any vehicle in a parking place clearly designated for handicapped persons unless the vehicle bears the distinguishing license plate or placard provided in Section 56-3-1960.

It is unlawful for any person who is not handicapped or who is not transporting a handicapped person to exercise the parking privileges granted handicapped persons pursuant to Section 56-3-1960.

A person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than thirty days for each offense.

SECTION 56-3-1971. Uniform parking violations tickets; who may issue; form and contents.

All law enforcement officers issuing tickets on public and private property and state law enforcement division licensed security officers of shopping centers and business and commercial establishments, which provide parking spaces designated for handicapped persons, are authorized to issue a uniform parking violations ticket to the vehicle for violations of the prescribed use of the parking spaces. The uniform parking violations ticket shall provide a means for tracking violators by tag number and recording the violations with the division of motor vehicles.

The procedures governing the issuance, form, and content of the uniform parking violations ticket must be prescribed by the department and approved by the Attorney General within thirty days of submission by the department.

SECTION 56-3-1972. Uniform parking violations ticket to consist of five copies.

For purposes of this article, a uniform parking violations ticket shall consist of five copies, one of which must be blue and placed upon the vehicle parked in violation of this article; one of which must be yellow and must be dispatched to the department for its records; one of which must be white and must be maintained by the originating agency; one of which must be green and must be retained by the trial officer for his records; and one of which must be pink and must be dispatched by the issuing agency to the department for purposes of audit, unless otherwise provided for by the department. Each ticket shall have a unique identifying number.

SECTION 56-3-1973. Printing of uniform parking violations tickets; distribution; cost; forwarding of audit copies.

The department shall have the uniform parking violations ticket printed. The department may authorize a law enforcement agency to automate the issuance of uniform parking violations tickets. Law enforcement and security agencies shall order tickets from the department and shall record the identifying numbers of the tickets received by them. The cost of the tickets must be paid by the law enforcement or security agency. The audit copy and the department's record copy must be forwarded to the department within thirty days of the disposition of the case by final trial court action. The head of each law enforcement agency is responsible for forwarding the audit copies and for conducting an annual inventory on December thirty-first of all tickets received but not yet disposed of by final trial court action and forwarding the results of the inventory on a form prescribed by the department to the department within ten days of the completion of the inventory.

SECTION 56-3-1974. Penalty for unaccounted or unforwarded tickets; jurisdiction over tickets.

A person who wilfully and intentionally violates the provisions of Section 56-3-1973 is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than two hundred fifty dollars nor more than fifteen hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than six months, or both, for each ticket unaccounted for or for each failure to timely forward the issuing agency's copy or department's record copy or audit copy of a ticket.

If the failure to account for a ticket or the failure to timely forward the issuing agency's copy or the department's record or audit copy of the ticket is inadvertent or unintentional, the misuse is triable in magistrate's court and, upon conviction, the person must be fined not more than one hundred dollars.

The service of the uniform parking violations ticket vests all traffic, recorder's, and magistrate's courts with jurisdiction to hear and dispose of the charge for which the ticket was issued and served.

SECTION 56-3-1975. Identification of handicapped parking places.

Each handicapped parking place must be clearly identified as a handicapped parking place. If the handicapped parking place is on public property, the marker must be maintained by the political subdivision having jurisdiction over the public property or the street or highway where the handicapped parking place is located. If the handicapped parking place is on private property, the marker must be maintained by the owner of the property.

ARTICLE 19.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; PERSONALIZED PLATES FOR CERTAIN PERSONS

SECTION 56-3-2010. Issuance of personalized license plates authorized.

(A) The department shall provide, upon proper application being made, special personalized motor vehicle license plates to the owner of a private passenger motor vehicle and motorcycles. The personalized plates must be of the design and bear the letters and numerals the department prescribes. However, there may be no duplication of registration plates, except South Carolina members of the United States Congress or members of the South Carolina General Assembly may purchase a maximum of the original and two duplicate registration plates. The department, in its discretion, may refuse the issue of letter combinations which may carry connotations offensive to good taste and decency and may not assign to a person not holding the relevant office letters or numerals denoting the holder to have a public office.

(B) Private passenger motor vehicles must be assigned a biennial registration which expires on a staggered monthly basis. Where a current vehicle license plate currently is displayed, the owner of the vehicle may make application for personalized license plates two months in advance of the current registration expiration. A sticker reflecting the month of expiration of registration must be issued and affixed in the space provided on the license plate assigned to the vehicle. A personalized license plate issued to a motorcycle expires November thirtieth two years after issuance. Every personalized license plate issued to members of the General Assembly and members of licensed state commissions and boards expires January thirty-first each year in which a new session of the General Assembly begins. Every vehicle registration must be renewed biennially upon application by the owner and by payment of the fee required by law to take effect the first day of the month following the expiration of the registration to be renewed.

SECTION 56-3-2020. Amount and disposition of fee.

The fee for the issue of special personalized motor vehicle license plates is thirty dollars biennially in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. This revenue must be deposited to the state general fund. The fee is due and payable upon application. The department may not refund the fee if the personalized plate has been manufactured.

SECTION 56-3-2030. Special personalized plates shall not be issued to certain applicants.

Special personalized plates may not be issued to any applicant whose operator's or chauffeur's license has been suspended or revoked within two years from the date of application or to any applicant whose driving record indicates a disregard of traffic violations or unsafe driving practices within two years from the date of application.

ARTICLE 20.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; MEMBERS OF FOREIGN CONSULATES

SECTION 56-3-2060. Special license plates authorized for members of foreign consulates; fee.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of foreign consulates for private motor vehicles registered in their respective names. The annual fee for such special license plates shall be the same as the fee provided for in Section 56-3-2020 of the 1976 Code, as last amended and only one such plate shall be issued to any person.

SECTION 56-3-2070. Design of plates; duration.

The special license plates shall be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates, upon which shall be imprinted "Foreign Consul" together with such numbers as the Department may determine. Such plates shall be issued or revalidated annually for the regular registration and licensing year.

SECTION 56-3-2080. Transfer to another vehicle of same owner; display on unauthorized car; return on cessation of membership of consulate.

Such license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made therefor and approved by the Department. It shall be unlawful for any person to whom such a plate has been issued to knowingly permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the Department. If a holder of such a plate shall cease to be a member of a foreign consulate he shall immediately return such plate to the Department.

SECTION 56-3-2090. Article is cumulative; penalties.

The provisions of this article shall not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but shall be cumulative thereto. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

ARTICLE 21.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSE TRAILERS

SECTION 56-3-2110. Carriers transporting house trailers may purchase special license plates.

Any common carrier engaged in the transportation of house trailers by the haulaway method and which has registered according to the laws of this State with the Public Service Commission, whether engaged in interstate or intrastate operations, or both, may purchase license plates for the transportation of house trailers.

SECTION 56-3-2120. Fees.

The carrier shall pay twelve dollars and fifty cents for the first such license plate and six dollars each for additional plates and the highway safety fee authorized by Section 56-3-810.

SECTION 56-3-2130. Display, transferability and use.

The plate shall be displayed on the rear end of the house trailer being towed and be transferable from one house trailer to another, but shall be used only on a house trailer that is in the custody of the common carrier. The Department shall have a special plate made for this purpose or it may authorize the use of dealers' plates in lieu thereof.

SECTION 56-3-2140. Reciprocal recognition of plates from other states.

The Department shall honor similar plates from other states, if such states honor the South Carolina plates for house trailers authorized by this article.

ARTICLE 22.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; MEMBERS OF MUNICIPAL AND COUNTY COUNCILS

SECTION 56-3-2150. Issuance of special plates; fees.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of municipal and county councils and to county coroners of this State for private passenger motor vehicles owned by them. The biennial fee for these special license plates is the same as the fee provided in Section 56-3-2020, and only one plate may be issued to a councilman or coroner. The plate must be issued or revalidated biennially for the regular registration and licensing period.

SECTION 56-3-2160. Design and size of plates; biennial validation.

The special plates must be of the same size as regular motor vehicle license plates but must be of a distinctive design and bear those letters and numerals the department prescribes. The plates must be issued or revalidated biennially for the regular registration and licensing period.

SECTION 56-3-2170. Transfer and return of plates.

The license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made to and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom such a plate has been issued to knowingly permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department. If a holder of such a plate ceases to be a member of the municipal or county council or ceases to be county coroner he shall immediately return the plate to the department.

SECTION 56-3-2180. Other registration and licensing provisions unaffected; penalties for violations.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative thereto. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact, or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any application or in the use of any special license plate issued is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 23.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES; ANTIQUE MOTOR VEHICLES AND MOTORCYCLES

SECTION 56-3-2210. Department may classify certain motor vehicles as antique.

Every motor vehicle as herein defined which is over thirty years old, is owned solely as a collector's item and is used for participation in club activities, exhibits, tours, parades and similar uses, but in no event used for general transportation, may be classified by the department as an antique motor vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-2220. Issuance of special license plates for antique motor vehicles authorized; duration; fee.

Upon receipt of an application on a form prescribed by the Department, it may issue appropriate designated license plates to owners of antique motor vehicles. Such license plate shall be valid so long as title to such vehicle is vested in the applicant. The fee for the certificate of registration and license plate of any such vehicle shall be ten dollars.

SECTION 56-3-2230. Department may classify certain motorcycles as antique.

(a) Every motorcycle over twenty-five years old, which is owned solely as a collector's item and is used for participation in club activities, exhibits, tours, parades and similar uses, but is not used for general transportation, may be classified by the department as an antique motorcycle.

(b) Upon receipt of an application on a form prescribed by the Department, it may issue appropriately designated license plates to owners of antique motorcycles. An antique motorcycle license plate shall be valid as long as title to the motorcycle is vested in the applicant. The fee for the certificate of registration and license plate of any such motorcycle shall be ten dollars.

ARTICLE 24.

SAMPLE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-2250. Sample license plates.

The department may provide, upon request, a sample motor vehicle license plate which shall not be displayed on any vehicle registered or required to be registered in this State. Any person displaying such plate is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or be imprisoned for not more than thirty days. The license plate shall be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates and the fee for issuance of such plate shall be ten dollars. Provided, that the word "sample" shall be imprinted on the license plate.

ARTICLE 25.

MOTOR VEHICLE DEALERS' LICENSES; DEMONSTRATION PLATES

SECTION 56-3-2320. Dealer and wholesaler license plates; restrictions on use.

(A) Upon application being made and the required fee being paid to the department, the department may issue dealer license plates to a licensed motor vehicle dealer. The license plates, notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter to the contrary, may be used exclusively on motor vehicles owned by, assigned, or loaned for test driving purposes to the dealer when operated on the highways of this State by the dealer, its corporate officers, its employees, or a prospective purchaser of the motor vehicle. The use by a prospective purchaser is limited to seven days, and the dealer shall provide the prospective purchaser with a dated demonstration certificate. The certificate must be approved by the department. Dealer plates must not be used to operate wreckers or service vehicles in use by the dealer nor to operate vehicles owned by the dealer that are leased or rented by the public. No dealer plates may be issued by the department unless the dealer furnishes proof in a form acceptable to the department that he has a retail business license as required by Chapter 36 of Title 12 and has made at least twenty sales of motor vehicles in the twelve months preceding his application for a dealer plate. The sales requirement may be waived by the department if the dealer has been licensed for less than one year. For purposes of this section, the transfer of ownership of a motor vehicle between the same individual or corporation more than one time is considered as only one sale. Multiple transfer of motor vehicles between licensed dealers for the purpose of meeting eligibility requirements for motor vehicle dealer plates is prohibited.

A dealer may be issued two plates for the first twenty vehicles sold during the preceding year and one additional plate for each fifteen vehicles sold beyond the initial twenty during the preceding year. For good cause shown, the department in its discretion may issue extra plates. If the dealer has been licensed less than one year, the department shall issue a number of license plates based on an estimated number of sales for the coming year. The department may increase or decrease the number of plates issued based on actual sales made.

The cost of each dealer plate issued is twenty dollars.

Upon application to the department, a public or private school, college, or university, or an economic development entity created or sanctioned by the county where the entity is located, may be issued a license plate to be used on vehicles loaned or rented to the school, college, university, or economic development entity by a licensed motor vehicle dealer. The plate must be a personalized plate designed by the department. The cost of each plate issued is two hundred dollars, of which one hundred sixty dollars must be remitted by the department to the county in which the school, college, university, or economic development entity is located. Each plate is valid for two years, and there is no limit on the number of plates which may be issued, except in the case of an economic development entity where only one plate per entity is allowed.

A dealer license plate is allowed on a motor vehicle which the dealer lends to a public or private school for use in a driver education program. A plate used for this purpose may be obtained without fee and without regard to the limit on plates issued pursuant to this section. When the motor vehicle is no longer used for driver education, the dealer shall surrender the plate to the department.

Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, a dealer exclusively selling heavy duty trucks at retail is eligible to obtain license plates for exclusive use on the heavy duty trucks regardless of the number of trucks sold by him during the preceding required number of months. These license plates for trucks must be noted with a distinct and separate identification and used only on heavy duty trucks. For purposes of this section, heavy duty trucks include trucks having a gross vehicle weight of sixteen thousand pounds or greater.

(B) For purposes of this section, the testing or demonstration of a heavy duty truck with a GVW of 16,000 pounds or over as defined in Section 56-3-20(10) includes permitting a prospective buyer to use the truck for carrying merchandise or cargo for not more than three days upon the dealer providing the buyer with a special demonstration certificate for this purpose. The form and content of the demonstration certificate must be as prescribed by the department which also shall provide certificates to dealers upon their request. The original certificate must be kept by the buyer in the cab of the truck during the three-day demonstration period, and the dealer shall retain a copy of the certificate and mail a copy of the certificate to the department within twenty-four hours after it is issued to the buyer.

SECTION 56-3-2325. Fine and forfeiture for misuse of dealer plates.

A person who misuses a dealer license plate issued pursuant to this article must be fined three hundred dollars or forfeit the dealer license plate, or both.

SECTION 56-3-2330. Manufacturer license plates.

(A) Upon application and payment of the required fee, the department may issue no more than two hundred manufacturer license plates to a motor vehicle manufacturer. The license plates must be used exclusively on motor vehicles, including motorcycles, owned or in possession of a manufacturer. Manufacturer license plates must not be used to operate wreckers in use by the manufacturer nor to operate vehicles leased or rented to the public by the manufacturer.

(B) A motor vehicle manufacturer shall apply for manufacturer license plates on a form prescribed by the department and shall provide proof the applicant is a bona fide motor vehicle manufacturer. The cost of each manufacturer plate issued is two hundred dollars, of which one hundred sixty dollars must be remitted by the department to the county in which the principal facility of the manufacturer is located. Each plate is valid for two years.

(C) Vehicles with manufacturer plates, not to exceed one licensed vehicle for each household, may be operated by persons authorized by the manufacturer on vehicles of that manufacturer's brand on state streets and highways for testing, distribution, evaluation, and promotion of vehicles. Vehicles with manufacturer plates may be used no more than ten consecutive days in connection with civic events and sporting events.

(D) A manufacturer who violates the provisions regarding use of motor vehicles is subject to the imposition of any administrative penalty permitted by law.

(E) For the purpose of this section only, "motor vehicle manufacturer" is defined as a person in the business of manufacturing or assembling new and unused vehicles in this State.

SECTION 56-3-2332. Issuance of standard license plate to manufacturer for vehicles used in employee benefit program or for testing and promotional purposes; registration fee.

(A) Upon application and payment of the required fee, the department may issue a standard license plate to a manufacturer for vehicles it has manufactured and which are used in a benefit program for the manufacturer's employees or used by the manufacturer for testing, distribution, evaluation, and promotion.

(B) The annual registration fee for this plate is eight hundred eighty dollars.

(1) The plates issued in connection with an employee benefit program may be used only on vehicles provided for the applicant's employees. In the application, the manufacturer shall notify the department in which county the employee assigned the vehicle resides. Twenty dollars and fifty cents of the fee must be credited to the general fund of the State and eight hundred fifty- nine dollars and fifty cents must be remitted to the county noted on the application. Amounts received by a county pursuant to this subsection must be credited to the accounts of taxing entities in the county as if it were a county property tax and are instead of state sales or use taxes. If the employee resides outside this State, the fee must be credited pro rata to all other counties due amounts under this section. The names and addresses of the employees are not required to be submitted to the department, but the department may require the documentation it determines necessary to ensure compliance with the provisions of this section.

(2) The plates issued in connection with testing, distribution, evaluation, and promotion, not to exceed fifty plates, may be used only for those purposes. Twenty dollars and fifty cents of the fee must be credited to the general fund of the State and eight hundred fifty-nine dollars and fifty cents must be remitted to the county in which the principal facility of the manufacturer is located. Amounts received by a county pursuant to this subsection must be credited to the accounts of taxing entities in the county as if it were a county property tax and are instead of state sales or use taxes. The department may require the documentation it determines necessary to ensure compliance with the provisions of this subsection.

(C) The annual registration fee provided for in this section is derived by computing the average price of the vehicle manufacturer's fleet times the property tax rate times the state's average millage rate. Before December thirty-first of each odd numbered year, the manufacturer shall review the average price of its fleet and submit the cost to the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee. The annual registration fee must be adjusted to reflect changes in the average cost of the manufacturer's fleet, the state's average millage rate, and the property tax rate. Any adjustment must be reflected in the annual appropriations act.

SECTION 56-3-2335. Research and development license plates.

(A) As used in this section, "research and development business" means a person who manufacturers tires in this State for use as original equipment on new and unused motor vehicles and who conducts research and development activities on tires in conjunction with the person's manufacturing activities in South Carolina.

(B) Upon application and payment of the required fee, the department may issue research and development license plates to a research and development business. The license plates must be used exclusively on motor vehicles, including motorcycles, provided by a motor vehicle manufacturer to the research and development business for the purpose of testing and evaluating the performance of the research and development business' tires on the motor vehicle.

(C) Application for research and development license plates must be made by the research and development business on a form prescribed by the department and submitted with proof of the applicant's status as a bona fide research and development business. The cost of each research and development license plate issued is two hundred dollars, of which one hundred sixty dollars must be remitted by the department to the county in which the testing facility of the business is located. Each plate is valid for two years. A maximum of thirty research and development license plates may be issued for the two-year period.

(D) Vehicles with research and development plates may be operated on the state's streets and highways only for the purpose of testing and evaluating the performance of the research and development business' tires on the motor vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-2340. Licensed motor vehicle dealers to issue first time registrations and license tags from dealership.

The department or its designated agent may allow licensed motor vehicle dealers to issue first time motor vehicle registrations and license tags directly from the dealership. A dealership shall apply to the department upon forms approved and provided by the department. The department may request information necessary to ensure the integrity of the current licensing system. The department may allow or refuse a dealership the right to issue motor vehicle registrations or license tags based upon criteria established by the department. If a dealership previously is denied the privilege to issue registrations and tags, upon meeting the established criteria, the dealership may be allowed to issue registrations or tags. If in the opinion of the department a bond is necessary to ensure the payment of fees associated with the registering and licensing of a vehicle, the department may require a bond not to exceed the estimated value of new tags and validation stickers held by the dealership or the department's designated agent.

SECTION 56-3-2345. Antique dealer license plates.

(A) Upon application being made and the required fee being paid to the department, the department may issue antique dealer license plates to a licensed motor vehicle dealer. The license plates, notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter to the contrary, may be used exclusively on antique motor vehicles owned by, assigned, or loaned for test driving purposes to the dealer when operated on the highways of this State by the dealer, its corporate officers, its employees, or a prospective purchaser of the antique motor vehicle. The use by a prospective purchaser is limited to seven days, and the dealer shall provide the prospective purchaser with a dated demonstration certificate. The certificate must be approved by the department. Antique dealer plates must not be used to operate wreckers or service vehicles in use by the dealer nor to operate vehicles owned by the dealer that are leased or rented by the public. No antique dealer plates may be issued by the department unless the dealer furnishes proof in a form acceptable to the department that he has a retail business license as required by Chapter 36 of Title 12 and has made at least five sales of antique motor vehicles in the twelve months preceding his application for a dealer plate. The sales requirement may be waived by the department if the dealer has been licensed for less than one year. For purposes of this section, the transfer of ownership of an antique motor vehicle between the same individual or corporation more than one time is considered as only one sale. Multiple transfer of antique motor vehicles between licensed dealers for the purpose of meeting eligibility requirements for antique motor vehicle dealer plates is prohibited.

(B) For good cause shown, the department may issue extra plates. If a dealer has been licensed less than one year, the department shall issue a number of license plates based on an estimated number of sales for the coming year. The department may increase or decrease the number of plates issued based on actual sales made.

(C) The cost of each plate is twenty dollars.

(D) For purposes of this section, "antique motor vehicle" means a motor vehicle which is over thirty years old.

ARTICLE 26.

SPECIAL MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION

SECTION 56-3-2350. Application for special registration for business of facilitating movement of vehicles from manufacturer to dealer or distributor, or movement for further construction of cabs or bodies, or for foreclosure or repossession of such motor vehicles; fees.

A person engaged in the business of limited operation of motor vehicles to facilitate the movement of vehicles from a manufacturer to a dealer or distributor, or for the movement of vehicles to further the construction of cabs or bodies, or in connection with the foreclosure or repossession of these motor vehicles may apply to the department for special registration to be issued to and used by the person upon the following conditions:

(1) The application must be in a form prescribed by the department to include the applicable liability insurance as prescribed by statute and filed with the department each year. The application must include the name and residence address of the applicant as follows:

(a) if an individual, the name under which he intends to conduct business;

(b) if a partnership, the name and residence address of each member of the partnership and the name under which the business is to be conducted;

(c) if a corporation, the name and company addresses of the corporation and the name and residence address of each of its officers.

(2) The application must be certified by the applicant and by an agent of the department to verify the facts set forth in the application.

(3) The annual fee for registration is fifty dollars, plus an annual fee of ten dollars for each license plate.

(4) License plates authorized by this section must not be used on vehicles that are loaned, rented, or leased by the licensed transporter to employees or any other individuals.

SECTION 56-3-2360. Notice of change of address; cancellation of registration and license plates.

Registrants licensed under this article shall notify the Department of any change of address of his principal place of business within thirty days after such change is made, and the Department may cancel the registration and all license plates issued upon failure to give such notice.

SECTION 56-3-2370. Transfer of transporter license plates.

Transporter license plates issued under this article may be transferred from vehicle to vehicle, but shall be used only for the limited operation of vehicles in connection with the manufacture or construction of cabs or bodies or with the foreclosure or repossession of vehicles owned or controlled by the registrant.

SECTION 56-3-2380. Denial of application; suspension or revocation of registration; refusal to renew registration.

The department may deny the application of any person for registration under this article and may suspend or revoke a registration or refuse to issue a renewal thereof if it is determined that the applicant or registrant has:

(a) Made a material misrepresentation in his application;

(b) Used or permitted the use of plates contrary to law;

(c) Been found guilty of fraud or fraudulent practices;

(d) Failed to comply with any of the regulations of the department for the enforcement of this article.

ARTICLE 27.

ENFORCEMENT; RECORDS AND REPORTS

SECTION 56-3-2410. [1962 Code Section 46-111; 1952 Code Section 46-111; 1949 (46) 342]Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-2420. Powers of State Highway Patrol.

Commissioned and uniformed personnel of the South Carolina Highway Patrol when on duty may:

(1) Upon reasonable belief that any vehicle is being operated in violation of any provision of this chapter require the driver thereof to stop and exhibit the registration card issued for the vehicle and submit to an inspection of such vehicle and the license plates;

(2) Inspect any vehicle of a type required to be registered and licensed hereunder in any public garage or repair shop or in any place where such vehicles are held for sale or wrecking, for the purpose of locating stolen vehicles and investigating the ownership and registration and license thereof; and

(3) Investigate reported thefts of vehicles.

SECTION 56-3-2430. Authority to administer oaths and acknowledge signatures.

Officers and employees of the Department engaged in the work of administering and enforcing the provisions of this chapter are, for the purpose of such work of administering and enforcing the provisions of this chapter, authorized to administer oaths and acknowledge signatures and shall do so without fee.

SECTION 56-3-2440. Department shall keep certain records.

The Department shall keep such records of all transactions relating to the enforcement and administration of this chapter as the Department shall determine to be necessary and appropriate for fiscal, statistical and administrative purposes. Suitable and appropriate records of every vehicle registered shall be kept by the Department in cross-reference books or on cards, as follows:

(1) Numerically, under the descriptive registration and license number assigned to the vehicle;

(2) Alphabetically, under the name of the owner;

(3) Numerically, under the motor or serial number, if available and otherwise under any other identifying number of the vehicle; and

(4) In any other manner the Department may deem desirable.

SECTION 56-3-2450. Certified copies of Department records; use thereof as evidence.

The Department and such officers and employees of the Department as the Department may designate may prepare and deliver upon request a certified copy of any record of the Department relating to the registration and licensing of any vehicle, and every such certified copy shall be admissible in any proceeding in any court in like manner as the original thereof.

SECTION 56-3-2460. Affidavit as to registration records of Department as evidence of ownership.

In any case tried in any court of competent jurisdiction in this State in which the ownership of any motor vehicle is in issue an affidavit by a duly authorized officer or agent of the Department showing what the registration records of the Department show or fail to show relative to the ownership of the motor vehicle in question shall be admissible in evidence on the sole issue of ownership of the motor vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-2470. Publication of registration and license lists; obtaining copies of lists.

The Department may compile and publish annually or at shorter intervals a list of all registered and licensed vehicles. The list shall show vehicles registered and licensed serially according to registration and license numbers and also may contain the names and addresses of the recorded owners and a brief description of each vehicle, including the serial or other identifying number. The Department may furnish without charge therefor a copy of the registration and license list and any supplements thereto to any police department in this State requesting it, and the Department may also sell copies of the list to any person requesting it upon payment to the Department of a uniform amount as determined by the Department.

SECTION 56-3-2480. Destruction of obsolete records.

The Department may destroy any records accumulated by it in connection with the administration of this chapter which have been maintained on file for three years or more and which may be deemed by the Department to be obsolete and of no further service in connection with the administration of this chapter or other use by the Department.

SECTION 56-3-2490. Unlawful to conceal motor vehicle whose serial number has been altered, removed or the like.

Whoever knowingly conceals any motor vehicle from which the manufacturer's serial number or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered or destroyed for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the identity of the motor vehicle shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

SECTION 56-3-2500. [1962 Code Section 46-114; 1952 Code Section 46-114; 1949 (46) 342]Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-2510. Department may assign new identifying numbers; special plate or number shall be affixed to vehicle.

The Department may assign a distinguishing number to a motor vehicle whenever the motor or serial number thereon is destroyed, replaced or obliterated and may issue or assign to the owner a special plate or number which shall be affixed to the vehicle or stamped on the vehicle in a place to be determined by the Department. Such motor vehicle shall be registered and licensed under such distinguishing number in lieu of the former motor number or serial number.

SECTION 56-3-2520. Penalties.

It is a misdemeanor for any person to violate any of the provisions of this chapter unless such violation is by this chapter or other law of this State declared to be a felony. Unless another penalty is by the laws of this State provided every person convicted of a misdemeanor for violation of any provisions of this chapter shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 29.

TEMPORARY LICENSE PLATES AND CERTIFICATES OF REGISTRATION OF MOTOR VEHICLES TO BE REGISTERED AND LICENSED IN ANOTHER STATE

SECTION 56-3-2600. Powers and duties of department; fees; application; issuance by dealers.

The department upon request and subject to the limitations and conditions hereinafter set forth shall provide temporary license plates and registration cards designed by the department to nonresidents of South Carolina and to licensed motor vehicle dealers who apply for such plates and cards. The fee for each set of license plates and registration cards shall be twenty dollars. Application therefor shall be made to the department on forms prescribed and furnished by the department. Dealers, subject to the limitations and conditions hereinafter set forth, may issue such temporary license plates to owners of vehicles which are to be permanently licensed in a state other than South Carolina.

SECTION 56-3-2610. Records of dealer.

Every dealer shall maintain in permanent form a record of all temporary license plates delivered to him, and shall also maintain in permanent form a record of all temporary license plates issued by him. In addition, every dealer shall maintain in permanent form a record of any other information pertaining to the receipt or the issuance of temporary license plates that the Department may require. Each record shall be kept for a period of at least one year from the date of entry of such record.

SECTION 56-3-2620. Dealer issuing temporary registration certificate.

Every dealer who issues temporary license plates shall also issue a temporary registration certificate upon a form prescribed and furnished by the Department and shall deliver it with the license plates to the owner. On the day that a dealer issues such plates, he shall also send to the Department a copy of the temporary registration certificate.

SECTION 56-3-2630. Restrictions on dealer issuing temporary plates and cards; misstatement of fact; false information.

A dealer shall issue temporary plates and cards solely for vehicles which are purchased from that dealer for licensing and registering in another state. No dealer shall issue temporary plates or cards for any other purpose or reason. It shall be unlawful for a dealer to issue any temporary plates or registration cards containing any misstatement of fact or to knowingly insert any false information upon the face thereof.

SECTION 56-3-2640. Information to be placed on temporary license plate.

Every dealer who issues temporary plates shall insert clearly and indelibly on the face of each temporary license plate the date of issuance, the date of expiration, the make, and the identification number of the vehicle for which issued and such other information as the Department shall require.

SECTION 56-3-2650. Transfer, loan, or assignment of temporary license plate.

A temporary license plate shall be used only on the vehicle for which issued and shall not be transferred, loaned, or assigned to any other person or vehicle.

SECTION 56-3-2660. Duration of temporary license plate and registration certificate.

The temporary license plate and registration certificate are valid for twenty days from the date of issuance. However, temporary license plates and registration certificates for vehicles which will be permanently licensed in a foreign jurisdiction are valid for thirty days from the date of issuance.

SECTION 56-3-2670. [1982 Act No. 447] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-2675. Motor vehicle manufacturers authorized to obtain and issue temporary license plates.

(A) As used in this section, "Motor Vehicle Manufacturer" means a person in the business of manufacturing or assembling new and unused vehicles in this State.

(B) A motor vehicle manufacturer may obtain and issue temporary license plates in the same manner and subject to the same requirements as a motor vehicle dealer.

SECTION 56-3-2680. Penalties.

Any person violating the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than thirty days.

SECTION 56-3-2690. Applicability of other laws.

If temporary license plates and registration certificates are issued for a motor vehicle pursuant to this article, no other provisions of law of this State relating to temporary licensing and registration shall apply.

ARTICLE 30.

TEMPORARY LICENSE PLATES AND CERTIFICATES OF REGISTRATION OF MOTOR VEHICLES USED ONLY FOR CORPORATE RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

SECTION 56-3-2710. Temporary plates and registration certificates authorized for certain motor vehicles.

The department upon request and subject to the limitations and conditions set forth in this article shall provide temporary license plates and registration certificates to a corporation for motor vehicles used solely for research and development.

SECTION 56-3-2720. Fee; application.

The fee for each set of temporary license plates and registration certificates is ten dollars. Application for the plates and certificates must be made to the department on forms it prescribes and furnishes.

SECTION 56-3-2730. Design of temporary plates and registration certificates.

The temporary license plates and registration certificates must be designed by the department. On the face of each plate must be imprinted the date of issuance, the date of expiration, the make and identification number of the vehicle, and other information the department requires.

SECTION 56-3-2740. Temporary plates and registration certificates not to be transferred; term; renewal.

The temporary license plate and registration certificate may be used only for the vehicle for which it is issued and must not be transferred, loaned, or assigned to any other vehicle. They are valid for one hundred twenty days from the date of issuance, but they may be renewed by the department.

SECTION 56-3-2750. [1989 Act No. 143, Section 1] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-3-2760. Violations; penalties.

A person who violates the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 31.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES FOR VOLUNTEER FIREMEN

SECTION 56-3-2810. Issuance of special plates; cost; application.

The department shall issue special motor vehicle license plates to "volunteer firemen" who request them in the manner provided in this article and who are residents of the State for private passenger motor vehicles registered in their respective names. For the purposes of this article "volunteer firemen" means members of organized units providing fire protection without compensation being paid to the members of the units for the service provided and whose membership is certified to the municipal clerk or chairman of the council of the municipality or county in which their unit is based by the chief officer of the unit concerned. The cost of the special license plate as determined by the department must be paid biennially by the requesting volunteer fireman, and only one license plate may be issued to a volunteer fireman. The plate must be issued upon application in a manner and upon forms prescribed by the department and upon approval of the application by the department.

SECTION 56-3-2820. Plate specifications.

The special license plates must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates and imprinted with the words "Volunteer Fireman" with numbers the department may determine. The plates are for biennial periods as provided by law.

SECTION 56-3-2830. Transfer and return of plates.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made therefor, in a manner and upon forms which must be prescribed by the Department, and upon approval of the application by the Department. It is unlawful for any person to whom a plate has been issued pursuant to this article knowingly to permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except that one authorized by the Department. If a holder of the plate ceases to be a volunteer fireman he must immediately return the plate to the Department.

SECTION 56-3-2840. Other registration and licensing provisions unaffected; penalties for violations.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative thereto. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact in any such application, or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any such application or in the use of any special license plate issued pursuant to this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or thirty days' imprisonment, or both.

ARTICLE 32.

TEMPORARY LICENSE PLATES AND REGISTRATION CARDS FOR TRAILERS AND SEMI-TRAILERS

SECTION 56-3-2900. Department authorized to provide temporary license plates and registration cards for trailers and semi-trailers; fees; issuance by manufacturer.

Upon request the department shall provide temporary license plates and registration cards designed by the department to manufacturers in South Carolina who produce trailers or semi-trailers and who apply for these plates and cards. The fee for each set of license plates and registration cards is twenty dollars. Applications for these license plates and registration cards must be made to the department on forms prescribed and furnished by the department. The department shall issue temporary license plates and registration cards in blocks of up to one hundred per application. When a block of temporary license plates and registration cards is issued, the fee is equal to the number of sets of temporary license plates and registration cards in the block multiplied by twenty dollars. A manufacturer may issue a temporary license plate to a trailer or semi-trailer that is being moved from the manufacturer to the dealer's or purchaser's place of business.

SECTION 56-3-2910. Records to be kept by manufacturer.

Each manufacturer must maintain a permanent record of all temporary license plates and registration cards either delivered to it, issued by it, or both. In addition, each manufacturer shall maintain a permanent record of any other information pertaining to the receipt or the issuance of temporary license plates and registration cards that the department may require. Each record must be kept for a period of at least one year from the date of the latest entry on the record.

SECTION 56-3-2920. Issuance and delivery of registration cards by manufacturer.

A manufacturer who issues a temporary license plate shall also prepare a temporary registration card upon a form prescribed and furnished by the department and must deliver it with the temporary plate to the owner of the trailer or semi-trailer.

SECTION 56-3-2930. Intentional misstatements, etc., prohibited.

It is unlawful for a manufacturer to issue a temporary plate or registration card containing a misstatement of fact, to knowingly insert false information upon the face of it, or to intentionally leave blank any required information.

SECTION 56-3-2940. Information to appear on temporary license plate.

A manufacturer who issues temporary plates shall insert clearly and indelibly on the face of each temporary license plate the date of issuance, the date of expiration, the make, and the identification number of the trailer or semi-trailer for which it is issued and any other information the department requires.

SECTION 56-3-2950. Transfers prohibited.

A temporary license plate must be used only on the trailer or semi-trailer for which it is issued and must not be transferred, loaned, or assigned to any other trailer or semi-trailer.

SECTION 56-3-2960. Duration.

The temporary license plate and registration card is valid for thirty days from the date of issuance to the owner of the trailer or semi-trailer.

SECTION 56-3-2970. Violations; penalties; forfeit of license plates and registration cards; suspension of privilege to obtain.

(A) A person who violates the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for not more than thirty days. Each temporary license plate and registration card issued in violation of this article is a separate offense.

(B) Upon determining that a person has violated a provision of this article, the department may order any and all temporary plates and registration cards issued to the manufacturer be forfeited without refunding any fees, and may suspend or revoke the privilege of the manufacturer to obtain temporary plates.

SECTION 56-3-2980. Applicability of other licensing provisions.

If temporary license plates and registration cards are issued for a trailer or semi-trailer pursuant to this article, no other provisions of law of this State relating to temporary licensing and registration shall apply.

ARTICLE 33.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES FOR RECIPIENTS OF THE PURPLE HEART

SECTION 56-3-3310. Authorization to issue special plate; fee; number of plates; proof required.

The department may issue a permanent special motor vehicle license plate to a recipient of the Purple Heart for use on a private passenger motor vehicle. The biennial fee for the special license plate is the same as the fee provided in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this Title, and only one plate may be issued to a person. The application for a special plate must include proof the applicant is a recipient of the Purple Heart.

SECTION 56-3-3320. Design of plate; handicapped eligibility.

(A) The special license plates must be of the same size as regular motor vehicle license plates, upon which must be imprinted on the left side of the plates the distinctive purple heart insignia with numbers and designs determined by the department.

(B) If a person who qualifies for the special license plate issued under this section also qualifies for the handicapped license plate issued pursuant to Section 56-3-1960(1), then the license plate issued pursuant to this section shall also include the distinguishing symbol used on license plates issued pursuant to Section 56-3-1960(1). Until the department determines that the license plate shall be redesigned to include the symbol, the department shall develop a decal using a distinguishing symbol to be placed on the license plate which shall be issued to all persons who request the license plate authorized by this subsection, including persons for whom license plates were issued pursuant to this section on the effective date of this subsection.

SECTION 56-3-3330. Transfer of plate to different vehicle without authorization prohibited.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the Department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the special plate has been issued to knowingly permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the Department.

SECTION 56-3-3340. Compliance with licensing and registration provisions required; penalties.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative to them. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who (a) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (b) conceals a material fact, or (c) otherwise commits a fraud in any application or in the use of any special license plate issued is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 37.

SPECIAL COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-3710. Issuance of license plates with college or university emblems; fee; distribution of fee revenues; minimum number of licenses required.

(A) The department may issue to owners of private passenger motor vehicles special motor vehicle license plates which may have imprinted on them an emblem, a seal, or other symbol the department considers appropriate of a public college or university or independent institution of higher learning, defined in Section 59-113-50, located in this State. A school may submit to the department for its approval the emblem, seal, or other symbol it desires to be used for its respective special license plate. A school also may request a change in the emblem, seal, or other symbol once the existing inventory of the license plate has been exhausted. The fee for this special license plate is seventy dollars every two years in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. This special license plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates. The special license plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section must be distributed to a separate fund for each of the respective colleges, universities, or independent institutions of higher learning. Each fund must be administered by the school and may be used only for academic scholarships. Funds collected for state colleges and universities must be deposited with the State Treasurer. Funds collected for independent institutions must be deposited in an account designated by the respective school. The distribution is thirty dollars to the department and forty dollars to the school for each special license plate sold for the respective school.

The department shall receive one hundred or more applications requesting a special license plate for a school before a specialized license plate may be developed for that school.

SECTION 56-3-3720. Transfer of special license plates; prohibition against display of license plate on unauthorized vehicle.

The license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the special plate has been issued to knowingly permit it to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-3725. Reference to or symbol of college or university on license plate.

License plates issued pursuant to this article shall not contain a reference to a private or public college or university in this State or use symbols, designs, or logos of these institutions without the institution's written authorization.

SECTION 56-3-3730. Relationship of article to other provisions of chapter; violations and penalties.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but are cumulative to them. Any person violating the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction must be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 39.

SHAG COMMEMORATIVE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-3910. Issuance of special license plate; fee; size of plate; reserved number.

The department may issue a special commemorative motor vehicle license plate commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the introduction of the State Dance, the Shag, in 1988 for use by owners on their private passenger motor vehicles. The biennial fee for the commemorative license plate is fifty dollars in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee prescribed by Article 5 of this chapter. This license plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates. The plate must be issued or revalidated biennially for two years beginning December first and ending November thirtieth twenty-four months later. License number "one" for the Shag license plate is reserved for the president of the Columbia Shag Club in Richland County.

SECTION 56-3-3920. Transfer of plate; unauthorized use.

A special license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made therefor and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom such a commemorative license plate has been issued knowingly to permit the plate to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-3930. Relationship of article to other provisions of chapter.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative thereto.

ARTICLE 40.

SPECIAL COMMEMORATIVE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-3950. "Keep South Carolina Beautiful" license plates; fee; special fund for road beautification.

The department may issue a special commemorative "Keep South Carolina Beautiful" motor vehicle license plate for use by owners on their private passenger motor vehicles to establish a special fund to be used by the Department of Transportation for the purposes of beautifying the state's roads and highways. The Department of Transportation, in implementing this program, may not expend beautification funds for wildflowers without prior approval of the South Carolina Department of Agriculture. The Department of Agriculture shall ensure, before granting approval, that the varieties of wildflowers used in beautification are not harmful to agriculture at or near a proposed project. The biennial fee for the commemorative license plate is fifty-four dollars, and of this amount twenty-four dollars must be placed in a special "Keep South Carolina Beautiful Fund" established within and administered by the Department of Transportation. This biennial fee is in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 7 of this title. The commemorative plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates and must be imprinted with the words "Keep South Carolina Beautiful". The plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

SECTION 56-3-3960. Transfer of special license plate to another vehicle; unauthorized use.

A special license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom such a commemorative license plate has been issued knowingly to permit the plate to be displayed on any vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-3970. Provisions of this article in addition to other vehicle registration and licensing requirements.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative thereto.

ARTICLE 43.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES - RETIRED MEMBERS OF THE UNITED STATES ARMED FORCES

SECTION 56-3-4310. Issuance of plates; who is entitled; fees.

(A) The department shall issue a special motor vehicle license plate for use on a private passenger motor vehicle owned by any retired member of the United States Armed Forces who is a resident of this State in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(B) The annual fee for the special license plate is the regular motor vehicle registration fee plus the personalized license plate fee provided by Section 56-3-2020, and only one plate may be issued to any person for each vehicle owned by that person, up to a maximum of two vehicles. The revenue from the issuance of plates under this article must be deposited in the manner provided under Section 56-3-2020. The department shall issue the license plate or the revalidation sticker upon receipt of an application made under oath and in the form required by the department.

(C) Any person is authorized to use the special license plates provided by this section if he provides evidence that he is a retired member of the United States Armed Forces.

SECTION 56-3-4320. Size, design, imprint.

The special license plate must be of the same size and general design as regular motor vehicle license plates. The department shall imprint the special license plates with the words "U.S. Armed Forces, Retired".

SECTION 56-3-4330. Transfer to or display on different vehicle.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the plate has been issued knowingly to permit it to be displayed on any vehicle other than the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-4340. Provisions cumulative to other license provisions; prohibited acts; penalties.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative to those other provisions. Any person violating the provisions of this article or any person who: (1) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in any application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (2) conceals a material fact, or (3) otherwise commits fraud in the application for or in the use of a special license plate issued under the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine of not more than two hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 45.

SPECIAL COMMEMORATIVE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-4510. Special commemorative license plates for Nongame Wildlife and Natural Areas Fund.

The department shall issue a special commemorative motor vehicle license plate for use by the owner on his private passenger motor vehicle for the purposes of the "Nongame Wildlife and Natural Areas Fund" provided in Section 12-7-2415. The annual fee for the commemorative license plate is twelve dollars for the first two years and five dollars for each year after that time, and these amounts must be placed in the fund. This annual fee is in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 7 of this title. The commemorative plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates and must be imprinted with the words "South Carolina Protects Endangered Species". The plates must be issued or revalidated for an annual period which expires twelve months from the month they are issued.

ARTICLE 47.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES - MEMBERS OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA STATE GUARD

SECTION 56-3-4710. Special plates may be issued; fee; revenues.

(A) The department may issue a special motor vehicle license plate to a member of the South Carolina State Guard who is a resident of the State for a private passenger motor vehicle owned by the member.

(B) The annual fee for the special license plate is the regular motor vehicle registration fee plus the personalized license plate fee provided by Section 56-3-2020. Only one plate may be issued to a person. The revenue from the issuance of plates under this article must be deposited in the manner provided for under Section 56-3-2020. The department shall issue the license plate or the revalidation sticker upon receipt of an application made under oath and in the form required by the department.

(C) A person who is issued a license plate under the provisions of this article is not required to reapply so long as that person owns the vehicle for which the plate is issued or is authorized pursuant to this article. The provisions of this article do not apply if the member applies for a special personalized motor vehicle license plate under the provisions of Section 56-3-2010.

SECTION 56-3-4720. Size; design; legend; number; duration.

The special license plate must be of the same size and general design as regular motor vehicle license plates. The department shall imprint the special license plates with the words "South Carolina State Guard" together with numbers the department may determine necessary or expedient. The licensing period for the plate is on an annual basis and expires twelve months from the month it is issued.

SECTION 56-3-4730. Transfer to other vehicle; display on unauthorized vehicle prohibited.

A license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for a person to whom the plate has been issued knowingly to permit it to be displayed on a vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-4740. Provisions of article cumulative of other applicable provisions; violations and penalties.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter but are cumulative to those other provisions. A person violating the provisions of this article or a person who: (1) fraudulently gives false or fictitious information in an application for a special license plate, as authorized in this article, (2) conceals a material fact, or (3) otherwise commits fraud in the application or in the use of a special license plate issued under this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

ARTICLE 49.

SOUTH CAROLINA FIREFIGHTERS LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-4910. Authorization to issue plates; disposition of fees.

(A) The department shall issue special motor vehicle license plates to active and retired South Carolina firefighters who request them in the manner provided in this article and who are residents of the State for private passenger motor vehicles owned by them. The special license plates, which must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates, must be imprinted with the words "SOUTH CAROLINA FIREFIGHTER" together with a fire service emblem and with numbers as the department may determine. The plates are for annual periods as provided by law. The fee for this special license plate is thirty-five dollars each year which is in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee as set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section must be deposited in a separate fund for the South Carolina Fire Academy. The fund must be administered by the Budget and Control Board Division of State Fire Marshal and must be used only to train in-state public firefighters, paid and volunteer, to comply with state and federal mandated training standards. Funds collected must be deposited with the State Treasurer. The distribution of the funds is based on fifteen dollars to the department and twenty dollars to the academy for each special license plate sold.

(C) The department must receive one hundred or more applications requesting a special license plate for the South Carolina Firefighters before a specialized license plate may be developed.

SECTION 56-3-4920. Display of plate limited to authorized vehicle; transfer to different vehicle.

The license plate issued pursuant to this article may be transferred to another vehicle of the same weight class owned by the same person upon application being made and approved by the department. It is unlawful for any person to whom the special plate has been issued knowingly to permit it to be displayed on a vehicle except the one authorized by the department.

SECTION 56-3-4930. Provisions of article cumulative of other licensing and registration provisions; penalties for violation.

The provisions of this article do not affect the registration and licensing of motor vehicles as required by other provisions of this chapter, but are cumulative to them. A person who violates the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days.

ARTICLE 50.

PUBLIC EDUCATION: A GREAT INVESTMENT LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-5010. Authorization to issue special license plates; fees.

The Department of Public Safety may issue a special commemorative "Public Education: A Great Investment" motor vehicle license plate to establish a special fund to be used by the Department of Education for the purpose of providing computers to the public schools. The biennial fee for the commemorative license plate is fifty-four dollars, and of this amount, twenty dollars must be placed in a special "Public Education: A Great Investment Fund" established within and administered by the Department of Education to purchase computers for use in the classroom and thirty-four dollars must be distributed to the school district or a school chosen by the license plate purchaser to be used to purchase computers for use in the classroom. The Department of Public Safety shall report to the Department of Education the school district and the school chosen by the license plate purchaser to which the funds must be distributed. The Department of Education shall distribute funds to the district for further distribution to the schools chosen by the license plate purchasers. The commemorative plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates and must be imprinted with the words "Public Education: A Great Investment". The plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

ARTICLE 51.

SOUTH CAROLINA: FIRST IN GOLF LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-5200. "South Carolina: First in Golf" license plates.

(A) The department may issue a special "South Carolina: First In Golf" motor vehicle license plate to establish a special fund to be used by the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism to provide grants to promote the South Carolina Junior Golf Association.

The fee for this special license plate is seventy dollars every two years in addition to the regular motor vehicle license fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. The special license plate must be of the same size and general design of a regular motor vehicle license plate and must be imprinted with the words South Carolina: First in Golf". The plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section must be distributed to a special "South Carolina: First In Golf" fund established within and administered by the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism to promote the South Carolina Junior Golf Association. The distribution is thirty dollars to the department and forty dollars to the fund.

(C) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate pursuant to this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(D) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

ARTICLE 52.

CHARTER LIMOUSINE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-5300. Charter limousines to acquire special Class C license plates; biennial fee.

(A) In addition to complying with any other registration and license fee requirement contained in this chapter, a "charter limousine" regulated by the South Carolina Public Service Commission must acquire a special license plate from the Department of Public Safety upon submission of proof that the charter limousine is certified as a "Class C Charter Limousine" by the commission.

(B) The biennial fee for this special license plate is twenty-five dollars.

(C) Of the funds appropriated to the Public Service Commission in the Annual Appropriations Act for 1997-98 and subsequent years for Operations/Administration, Other Operating Expenses, sufficient funds must be used to process documents providing proof that the charter limousine is certified as a "Class C Charter Limousine" as required by subsection (A).

ARTICLE 53.

NORMANDY INVASION SURVIVORS SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-5350. Authority to issue Normandy Invasion survivor license plates.

(A) The Department of Public Safety may issue special motor vehicle license plates to survivors of the World War II Normandy Invasion for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The caption of these plates shall include the words: "Normandy Invasion Survivor". The fee for this special license plate must be the regular motor vehicle license plate fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the department.

(B) Any person may be issued a special license plate provided by this section if he provides evidence to the department that he is a survivor of the World War II Normandy Invasion.

ARTICLE 55.

PEARL HARBOR SURVIVORS' LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-5910. Persons eligible.

An owner of a private passenger motor vehicle who is a resident of this State may apply for a motor vehicle license plate under this article if he:

(1) was a member of the United States Armed Forces on December 7, 1941;

(2) was on station on December 7, 1941, during the hours of 7:55 a.m. to 9:45 a.m., Hawaii time at Pearl Harbor, the Island of Oahu, or offshore at a distance not exceeding three miles; and

(3) received an honorable discharge from the United States Armed Forces.

SECTION 56-3-5920. Design and issuance of special license plate.

The department shall design a Pearl Harbor survivor license plate for motor vehicles. The license plates issued pursuant to this article must be numbered consecutively and contain the words "Pearl Harbor Survivor".

SECTION 56-3-5930. Proof of eligibility and registration; fee; verification.

(A) An owner must be issued a Pearl Harbor survivor license plate for his private passenger motor vehicle upon submitting proof of eligibility and complying with the state motor vehicle laws relating to registration and licensing of motor vehicles and payment of the regular license fee for license plates as prescribed by law plus, for the initial issuance, an additional fee of fifteen dollars.

(B) All applications for Pearl Harbor survivor license plates must be verified by the South Carolina State Chairman of Pearl Harbor Survivors.

SECTION 56-3-5940. Revalidation.

In those years in which a metal plate is not issued, for a license plate authorized by this article, a revalidation sticker with a distinctive serial number or other suitable means prescribed by the department must be issued and affixed in the space provided on the license plate assigned to the vehicle upon payment of the fee prescribed for registration and licensing.

SECTION 56-3-5950. One special plate per person; plate not transferable.

Only one license plate may be issued to an applicant, and the license plate is nontransferable.

ARTICLE 58.

COUNTY VETERANS AFFAIRS OFFICERS SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7000. County Veterans Affairs Officers special license plates.

The department may issue a special motor vehicle license plate to a County Veterans Affairs Officer for a private motor vehicle registered in his name. Only one plate may be issued to a person. The biennial fee for the special license plate is the same as the fee provided in Section 56-3-2020.

SECTION 56-3-7010. Size, design, and contents of license plates; revalidation.

The special plates must be of the same size and general design as a regular motor vehicle license plate. The department shall imprint the special license plate with the words County Veterans Affairs Officer" together with numbers the department may determine necessary. The plate must be issued or revalidated biennially for the regular registration and licensing period.

ARTICLE 60.

SHRINERS LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7100. Authority to issue commemorative license plates.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of the Shriners for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The fee for the issuance of this special plate must be the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the Department of Revenue. Every five years the department shall assess the cost of production, administration, and issuance of this plate and provide this information to the General Assembly. Only one plate may be issued to a Shriner.

ARTICLE 70.

SQUARE DANCE COMMEMORATIVE LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7610. Authority to issue commemorative license plates.

The department may issue a special commemorative motor vehicle license plate commemorating the Square Dance as the state's official American Folk Dance. The biennial fee for the commemorative license plate is fifty dollars in addition to the regular motor vehicle fee prescribed by Article 5 of this chapter. This license plate must be the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates.

ARTICLE 71.

SPECIAL LICENSE DECAL; FOREST PRODUCTS HAULERS

SECTION 56-3-7650. Forest product haulers decals.

The Department of Public Safety shall issue a special motor vehicle license decal to identify intrastate unmanufactured forest product haulers. A one-time fee for the issuance of this special plate is thirty dollars.

ARTICLE 72.

SPECIAL OLYMPICS LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7700. Special Olympics license plates.

(A) The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates commemorating the Special Olympics which may have imprinted on the plates an emblem, seal, or other symbol approved by the South Carolina Special Olympics and the department. The fee for this special license plate is fifty dollars every two years in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. This special license plate must be the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates. The special license plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section, after the costs to produce and administer the distribution of this special license plate have been satisfied, must be distributed to the South Carolina Special Olympics.

ARTICLE 73.

FRATERNITY AND SORORITY LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7750. Fraternity and sorority license plates.

(A) The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to owners of private passenger-carrying motor vehicles or light pickups having an empty weight of six thousand pounds or less and a gross weight of nine thousand pounds or less registered in their names which may have imprinted on the plate an emblem, a seal, or other symbol the department considers appropriate to a certified service fraternity or sorority. A fraternity or sorority may submit to the department for its approval the emblem, seal, or other symbol it desires to be used for its respective special license plate. Before a design is approved, however, the organization must submit to the department written authorization for the use of any copyrighted or registered logo, trademark, or design. A fraternity or sorority also may request a change in the emblem, seal, or other symbol once the existing supply has been exhausted. The fee for this special license plate is seventy dollars every two years in addition to the regular motor vehicle license fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. This special license plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates. The special license plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section must be distributed to a separate fund for each of the respective fraternities or sororities. Each fund must be administered by the fraternity or sorority and may be used only for academic scholarships. Funds collected for each fraternity or sorority must be deposited in an account designated by the fraternity or sorority. The distribution is thirty dollars to the department and forty dollars to the respective fund.

(C) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate pursuant to this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(D) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

ARTICLE 76.

SHRINERS LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-7860. Shriners license plates.

The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of the Shriners for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The fee for the issuance of this special plate must be the regular motor vehicle registration fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the Department of Public Safety. The department shall assess the cost of production, administration, and issuance of this plate and provide this information to the General Assembly every five years.

ARTICLE 78.

LICENSE PLATES ON BEHALF OF THE H. L. HUNLEY SUBMARINE

SECTION 56-3-7910. H. L. Hunley submarine license plates.

(A) The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to owners of private passenger-carrying motor vehicles or light pickups having an empty weight of six thousand pounds or less and a gross weight of nine thousand pounds or less registered in their names which may have imprinted on the plate an emblem, a seal, logo, or other symbol of the H.L. Hunley submarine. The Hunley Commission shall submit to the department for its approval the emblem, seal, logo, or other symbol it desires to be used for this special license plate. The Hunley Commission may request a change in the emblem, seal, logo, or other symbol not more than once every five years. The fee for this special license plate is one hundred dollars every two years in addition to the regular motor vehicle registration fee set forth in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title. This special license plate must be of the same size and general design of regular motor vehicle license plates. The special license plates must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month they are issued.

(B) The fees collected pursuant to this section must be distributed to the Fund to Save the Hunley created by the Hunley Commission or another nonprofit fund designated by the commission for the continued curation of the Hunley submarine. Any such fund must be administered by the Hunley Commission and may be used only for efforts to raise, restore, and preserve the Hunley submarine. Any funds collected must be deposited in an appropriate nonprofit account designated by the Hunley Commission. The distribution of these funds is sixty dollars to the Hunley Commission and forty dollars to the department for each license plate sold.

(C) The department shall reserve the first twelve license plates for use by the Hunley Commission.

(D) Before the department produces and distributes a license plate authorized under this section, it must receive at least four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this subsection, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that individual's or organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit.

ARTICLE 81.

NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-8000. Non-profit organization license plates.

(A) The department may issue special motor vehicle license plates to owners of private passenger-carrying motor vehicles or light pickups having an empty weight of six thousand pounds or less and a gross weight of nine thousand pounds or less registered in their names which may have imprinted on the plate the emblem, a seal, or other symbol the department considers appropriate of an organization which has obtained certification pursuant to either Section 501(C)(3) or 501(C)(7) of the Federal Internal Revenue Code. The fee for this special license plate is the fee contained in Section 56-3-2020.

The special license plate must be issued or revalidated for a biennial period which expires twenty-four months from the month it is issued.

(B) Before the department produces and distributes a plate authorized under this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred or more prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit.

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(C) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular plate authorized under this section, it shall not produce additional plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

(D) Only certified members of organizations, as set forth by the organization, may be issued a special license plate pursuant to this section. Each certified member may only apply for one special license plate for each vehicle registered in his name.

(E) License plates issued pursuant to this section shall not contain a reference to a private or public college or university in this State or use symbols, designs, or logos of these institutions without the institution's written authorization.

(F) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, all funds collected pursuant to this section must be deposited into an account in the Office of the Treasurer and called the "Special License Plate Fund". Monies credited to the fund may only be expended to defray the costs of this section.

(G) Before a design is approved, the organization must submit to the department written authorization for the use of any copyrighted or registered logo, trademark, or design.

(H) The department may alter, modify, or refuse to produce any special license plate that it deems offensive or fails to meet community standards. If the department alters, modifies, or refuses to produce a special license plate, the organization or individual applying for the license plate may appeal the department's decision to a special joint legislative committee. This committee shall be comprised of two members from the House Education and Public Works Committee, two members from the Senate Transportation Committee.

Appointments to the joint legislative committee shall be made by the chairmen of the House Education and Public Works Committee and the Senate Transportation Committee. The department's decision may be reversed by a majority of the joint legislative committee. If the committee reverses the department's decision, the department must issue the license plate pursuant to the committee's decision. However, the provision contained in subitem (B) of this section also must be met.

ARTICLE 82.

SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION GUIDELINES

SECTION 56-3-8100. Special license plates production and distribution guidelines.

(A) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate created by the General Assembly after January 1, 2000, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(B) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

(C) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for plates created pursuant to Article 12, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 14, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 31, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 39, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 40, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 43, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 45, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 49, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 50, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 60, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 70, Chapter 3, Title 56; Article 72, Chapter 3, Title 56; and Article 76, Chapter 3, Title 56, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

ARTICLE 83.

ROTARY INTERNATIONAL SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-8200. Rotary International special license plates.

(A) The Department of Public Safety may issue motor vehicle license plates to members of Rotary International for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The fee for this special license plate must be the regular motor vehicle license fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the department. The license plates issued pursuant to this section must conform to a design agreed to by the department and the chief executive officer of the organization.

(B) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate pursuant to this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(C) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

ARTICLE 84.

MARINE CORPS LEAGUE SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-8300. Marine Corps League special license plates.

(A) The Department of Public Safety may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of the Marine Corps League for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The fee for this special plate must be the regular motor vehicle license fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the department. The license plates issued pursuant to this section must conform to a design agreed to by the department and the chief executive officer of the organization.

(B) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate pursuant to this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(C) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.

ARTICLE 85.

LIONS CLUB SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES

SECTION 56-3-8400. Lions Club special license plates.

(A) The Department of Public Safety may issue special motor vehicle license plates to members of the Lions Club for private motor vehicles registered in their names. The fee for this special license plate must be the regular motor vehicle license fee contained in Article 5, Chapter 3 of this title which must be deposited in the state general fund and the special fee required by Section 56-3-2020 which must be deposited with the department. The license plates issued pursuant to this section must conform to a design agreed to by the department and the chief executive officer of the organization.

(B) Before the Department of Public Safety produces and distributes a special license plate pursuant to this section, it must receive:

(1) four hundred prepaid applications for the special license plate or a deposit of four thousand dollars from the individual or organization seeking issuance of the license plate. If a deposit of four thousand dollars is made by an individual or organization pursuant to this section, the department must refund the four thousand dollars once an equivalent amount of license plate fees is collected for that organization's license plate. If the equivalent amount is not collected within four years of the first issuance of the license plate, then the department must retain the deposit; and

(2) a plan to market the sale of the special license plate which must be approved by the department.

(C) If the department receives less than three hundred biennial applications and renewals for a particular special license plate, it shall not produce additional special license plates in that series. The department shall continue to issue special license plates of that series until the existing inventory is exhausted.





Legislative Services Agency
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