Ho-Chunk Nation Set to Release License Plates

By Kaili Berg

     The Ho-Chunk Nation (HCN) will be the seventh federally recognized tribe in the State of Wisconsin to issue license plates to enrolled Tribal Members.

     The Wisconsin Statute 341.409 allows the State of Wisconsin and the HCN to register motor vehicles owned or operated by an enrolled member or by the HCN.

     The license plates will be released in two stages. Stage one will be plates for tribal owned vehicles only. At this stage, HCN owned fleet vehicles will be issued a tribal plate.

     This stage is vital to the License Plate program because these will be the first vehicles with Ho-Chunk Nation plates on them. Vehicles with the plates on them will serve as “test subjects.” The Division of Transportation plans to have these plates issued by the end of November.

     Stage two plates will be for Tribal Members. The Division of Transportation plans to have these plates available by January 2020.

     To qualify for a HCN license plate, you must be an enrolled Tribal Member of the Ho-Chunk Nation and must reside on trust land. The HCN does not have jurisdiction to register vehicles for enrolled members living off of trust land.

     Enrolled Tribal Members will be able to register their vehicles at the Division of Transportation office at the Tribal Office Building near Black River Falls, Wisc.

     The license plates will be manufactures by Badger State Industries, which is a State of Wisconsin Prison Industries Program.

     The plates were designed by Business Department Graphic Designer, Ken Lewis.