(A) A manufacturer, dealer, or distributor of motor vehicles may apply for a reasonable number of commercial car demonstration placards. The application shall show the make of commercial cars, commercial tractors, trailers, and semitrailers manufactured, dealt, or distributed in and shall show the taxing district in which the applicant's place of business is located.
Upon the filing of such application and the payment of an annual fee of five hundred dollars and appropriate postage as required by the registrar of motor vehicles, the registrar shall assign to the applicant a distinctive placard and number. Such placards shall be known as "commercial car demonstration placards," and shall expire on a date prescribed by the registrar. Upon the first application by any person for such placards, the registrar shall prorate the annual fee in accordance with section 4503.11 of the Revised Code; for all renewals or replacements of such placards, the registrar shall collect the full amount of the annual fee.
Commercial car demonstration placards may be displayed on commercial cars, commercial tractors, trailers and semitrailers owned by the manufacturer, dealer, or distributor, when those vehicles are operated by or being demonstrated to a prospective purchaser. In addition to the purposes permitted by section 4503.30 of the Revised Code, the placards provided for in this section may be displayed on vehicles operated or used for delivery, hauling, transporting, or any other lawful purpose. When such placards are used, the placards provided for in section 4503.30 of the Revised Code need not be displayed.
The operator of any commercial car, commercial tractor, trailer, or semitrailer displaying the placards provided for in this section, at all times, shall carry with the operator a letter from the manufacturer, dealer, or distributor authorizing the use of such manufacturer's, dealer's, or distributor's commercial car demonstration placards.
When such placards are used on any commercial car or commercial tractor, such power unit shall be considered duly registered and licensed for the purposes of section 4503.38 of the Revised Code.
(B) No manufacturer, dealer, or distributor of motor vehicles shall use the commercial car demonstration placard for purposes other than those authorized by this section.
(C) Whoever violates division (B) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the third degree.
Effective Date: 01-01-2004.