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I have had several inquires lately concerning farm tags. In this article I will try my best to answer some of your questions.
On March 16, 2011 SB79 took effect. It created a weight class for farm vehicles to ensure that Kentucky farmers are not improperly ticketed and taxed when operating their vehicles across state lines. SB79 created weight classification of a 26,000 lbs. for farm tags.
Some states have an issue with Kentucky farm plates (38,000 lbs.) not have the (IFTA) International Fuel Tax Agreement when operating in their state. Kentucky exempts registered farm vehicles from IFTA taxes. However, Kentucky farmers have been cited and fined in other states because of their weight classification subject to IFTA taxation when operated within their borders.
If you decide to change your farm plate weight classification from 38,000 to 26,000 (remember your plate weight must cover vehicle, trailer and what you are hauling, total weight load) the 26,000 lbs. farm plates are not subject to IFTA taxation in other states (my understanding of what I have been told).
It is my understanding that farming is a commercial business, US DOT numbers are required on vehicles 10,001 lbs. or more when used in commerce. However, farm trucks intrastate (within state) 26,0001 lbs. or below do not require a DOT number (Kentucky exemption). Over 26,001 does need a DOT number. So, if you have the weight classification of 38,000 lbs. on your farm plate you need a DOT number for operating your vehicle in Kentucky. When you go between states (cross state borders) a DOT number is required for any weight classification in 10,0001 or more (the Kentucky exemptions do not apply when you go over into another state).
If you leave Kentucky, you lose Kentucky exemptions and must adhere to the federal regulations. You may go online for more information on DOT http://www.dot.gov. A question that I hear often in the office is “May anybody get a farm plate?” No. You must certify that you are engaged in farming. You do not have to own the farm, but you must be working on, renting, and engaged in production of crops/livestock. Be sure to sign your farm plate registration. You may call motor carriers at (502) 564-1257 or 1-800-928-2402 for more information about plates.
You cannot haul for hire on the farm plate, it is for your private use only.
Also, do not forget to bring your IRS form 2290 for all 55,000 lbs. plates and above when you come to renew your registrations. This applies to both commercial and limited registration plates.
All vehicles being renewed you must present your previous registration receipt. If you do not have this receipt a duplicate will be printed at a $3 cost per duplicate. This is per KRS 186.020 registration requirements.
The state and federal regulations are subject to change at any time. I hope this article helps, but you may find additional guidelines and regulations found at www.lrc.ky.gov and www.fmcsa.dot.gov.
Remember, the county clerk’s office door is open to you and our number is (502) 484-2213 and our website owencounty.ky.gov/clerk is available.