Bil Browning

Indiana Revokes LGBT Youth Group's License Plate

Filed By Bil Browning | March 16, 2012 5:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Living
Tags: gay license plate, gay youth, homophobic politicians, Indiana, indiana youth group, LGBT youth

Homophobic Republican state senators got their wish. The Bureau of Motor Vehicles has revoked the Indiana Youth Group's specialty license plate for violating "state law and Indiana Administrative Code" by giving donors low number plates. Two other organizations' plates were also revoked.

The legislators originally tried to sneak in legislation during the session to target the LGBT youth group's plate but after community uproar decided Thumbnail image for Indiana_Youth_Group.jpegnot to pursue the attempt. Republican State Senate President Pro Tempore David Long told the Indianapolis Star he had found a new "solution" by demanding the BMV revoke the plate on contractual grounds.

BMV Communications Director Graig Lubsen - who abruptly left the bureau recently - admitted to the Star that they have traditionally allowed groups to give out low number plates to major donors. A press release issued today by the BMV notes, "After the Senators brought this violation to our attention, the BMV reviewed the websites of all other organizations currently participating in the Special Group Recognition License Plate Program and found that the Greenways Foundation and the Indiana 4-H Foundation have also violated state law and administrative code by publicizing the sale of low-digit special group license plates for their respective organizations."

While the government entity says in their release, "If proof of similar activity by any other organization is brought to the BMV, the BMV staff will pursue and administer similar sanctions based on similar circumstances," organizations who were granted license plates by the state legislature will not be in danger. The same legislators who sent the letter granted the Indianapolis Colts a license plate previously and specifically allowed them to give away low number plates. Since the rules have changed and the BMV now grants permission for specialty plates instead of the legislature, the sanctions will only pertain to groups who were approved by the BMV.

The LGBT youth group had previously sued to be granted the right to have the plate after their application was repeatedly turned down. The plate was available for less than two months.

Indiana Youth Group would have made $25 from each plate sold. 669 plates have already been issued. If you're a Hoosier resident you can still purchase the plates until today. If you'd like to make a donation to IYG to help cover the loss of funds this will cause, you can do so here.

UPDATE: You can download a copy of the senators' letter here [pdf]. There are only signatures without any printed names, so any help identifying exactly who all of the signatories are would be helpful.


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