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DOT: Out-of-staters must register vehicles

The roads of North Dakota have become a hodgepodge of vehicles from different states and people who have come to work need to register their vehicles for the extent of their stay, North Dakota Department of Transportation and North Dakota Highway Patrol officials said.

State law requires nonresident vehicles be issued a temporary registration if operated by an individual who is gainfully employed in the state.

"People need to know if they work here, they live here, or temporarily live here and drive on our roads, they do need to register their vehicles," DOT Motor Vehicle Division Director Linda Sitz said.

The number of temporary registrations has doubled each year for the past four years, Sitz said, which reflects the number of newcomers in the state.

The requirement for temporary registration is not new, but the Legislature enhanced the law this session, Sitz said. With an influx of workers moving in from other states, people might not be aware of the requirement, she added.

The DOT has paired with the HP in an effort to educate drivers.

"There is a larger-than-average number of out-of-state vehicles in this state," NDHP Lieutenant Jody Skogen said. "Our mission with this campaign is to encourage people to be proactive and purchase that before our officers are forced into a situation where they take enforcement action."

The temporary registration is available for six months or 12 months. The six-month option is available for most vehicles for $70 with fees included, Sitz said. The year-long option is $140.

Registration is required to help maintain roads, Skogen said.

Rachael Wiedmer, operations assistant at Missouri Basin Well Service Inc., said a majority of their workforce is from out of state.

She said the company informs all employees and out-of-state subcontractors that vehicles must be registered.

"I think a lot of them aren't really familiar with that law," Wiedmer said. "We try to familiarize them as much as we can."

Registration is available online.

"Individuals coming into the state may not determine whether they are staying, so rather than registering on a permanent basis while gainfully employed, they may be just testing the water of whether they want to stay," she said.