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New tag, vehicle registration law started July 1

Before former Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin left office last year, she signed Senate Bill 1339, which will bring some new changes for Oklahoma motorists.

On Monday, a new state law regarding tag and vehicle registration went into effect. Oklahomans are now required to keep their license plates when selling vehicles and car owners will have to carry proof of their registration in their vehicles.

“If you sell a vehicle, remove the tag,” Oklahoma Tax Commission spokesperson Paula Ross said. “The tag will now stay with the person, not the car. When motorists purchase a new car, they will take the tag from their old car and place it on the new one. This will assist law enforcement in tracking current vehicle owners as well as cut down on past owners receiving turnpike fines, parking tickets or other issues involving their old vehicle.”

Because more than 26,000 employees, including military personnel, civilian and contractors, work at Tinker Air Force Base, this change is likely to affect the base, said Tech. Sgt. Rafe Holmes, non-commissioned officer in charge of police services for the 72nd Security Forces Squadron.

SB 1339 was authored by Sen. Kim David and then Rep. Josh Cockroft.

“Something to remember is that 42 other states currently have this system, where the registration stays with the person instead of the vehicle,” Cockroft said on the House floor last April. “One of the most important areas that I see this helping is the law enforcement side, when you talk about tracking who owns which vehicles.”

The following guidelines apply:

- A vehicle purchased at a dealership may still be driven for 30 days with temporary (paper) tags affixed.

- A vehicle purchased elsewhere may be driven for up to 5 days without a tag; however, the driver must carry the bill of sale or title to prove ownership until a tag is affixed.

- In both cases, registration is due within 30 days before penalties apply.

- There are no new penalties involved with this law, though citations for improper display and improper registration may apply if a license plate and/or registration do not match the vehicle.

Search #KeepTagOK online for more information.