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Contact: Tom Jacobs
555 Wright Way
Carson City, NV 89711
Office: (775) 684-4779
Cellular: (775) 721-4062

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NEWS FROM: Director’s Office 02-005


CARSON CITY, Nev. – The Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles has rejected a license plate design featuring a mushroom cloud from an atomic explosion.  A bill passed in the 2001 Legislature authorized the plate in support of the preservation of the history of atomic testing in the state.

In a letter to Robert Agonia, vice president of the Nevada Test Site Historical Foundation, DMV Director Ginny Lewis said the proposed design of the license plate was insensitive to the times.

“In light of the intense efforts Nevada is making to prevent our state from becoming the country’s nuclear waste dump,” she said, “the present threat of nuclear war between India and Pakistan and the fear of new terrorist attacks since September 11, any reference on a license plate to weapons of mass destruction is inappropriate and would likely offend our citizens.”

The design, by Rick Bibbero of Minden, was submitted by the foundation as the winning entry in a contest. The mushroom cloud central to the design generated controversy nationally and drew the attention of international media.

Lewis is encouraging the foundation to submit another design for the plate that better depicts the preservation of the history of the Nevada Test Site.