DOJ: News Release

Highway Patrol Vehicles to Sport New Lewis & Clark Plates

HELENA – As 2002 begins, the Montana Highway Patrol has a slightly new look, with some 200 MHP vehicles sporting the colorful new Lewis & Clark Bicentennial license plates. Wednesday MHP Colonel Bert Obert said the Patrol hoped to have all the new plates in place within the next few days.

Obert said the inspiration to use the plates on MHP cars came to him when he and Patrol captains attended the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission’s annual planning meeting in Billings last October.

“I was standing in the lobby and it hit me that this would look great on our Patrol cars,” Obert said. Obert discussed the idea with Dean Roberts, administrator of the state’s Motor Vehicle Division, and Clint Blackwood, the director of the Bicentennial Commission. “They thought it was a wonderful idea,” Obert said.

“The Patrol has a long and proud tradition in Montana, so it’s appropriate that we share our pride in Montana’s heritage by displaying these plates,” said Montana Attorney General Mike McGrath.

The blue, maroon and gold plates include a map of the state and a silhouette of the two explorers and their guide Sacajawea. The license plates became available to the general public on January 1, at licensing bureaus around the state. They are available for $30, with $20 going toward the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission.

Patrol vehicles travel more than 6 million miles each year, safeguarding Montana highways through enforcement, education and service.

“We’re glad to be part of the Bicentennial celebration,” Obert added, “and although it will be very busy for all public safety agencies during the next six years, celebrating the bicentennial will be enjoyable.”

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