Montana Anti-Hobbyist Inoperable Vehicle Bill to be Considered on Thurs., Feb. 14

Legislation (H.B. 409) to provide a limit on the number of inoperable motor vehicles allowed to accumulate on private property under “community decay” laws will be considered by the House Local Government Committee on Thursday, February 14, 2013.  Under the bill, four or more “junk vehicles” on private property would constitute community decay.   

We Urge You to Contact Members of the House Local Government Committee (List Attached Below) Immediately to Request Their Opposition to H.B. 409

For those interested in attending the hearing to voice their opposition, the committee will meet on Thurs., Feb. 14 at 3:00 p.m. at the following address:
State Capitol
Room 172
1301 East 6th Avenue  
Helena, Montana 59601
  • In Montana, a "junk vehicle" means a motor vehicle, including component parts that is discarded, ruined, wrecked, or dismantled; is not lawfully and validly licensed; and that remains inoperative or incapable of being driven.   Even vehicles that are permanently registered, but meet these criteria are considered junk vehicles.
  • Under the “community decay” laws, after giving notice in writing of a violation and upon the failure of the property owner to comply with removal, county officers may enter private property to remove the “junk vehicles” and may assess the property owner for the actual costs for the removal.  Nonpayment of the assessment becomes a lien upon the property and is enforceable in the same manner as the nonpayment of property taxes.  
  • H.B. 409 limits to three the number of inoperable vehicles permitted on private property.
  • H.B. 409 provides no reasonable concessions for legitimate automotive hobbyists that choose to work on more than three inoperable collector vehicles on private property.
  • H.B. 409 could outlaw the repair or modification of certain motor vehicles that are undergoing restoration.
  • H.B. 409 would limit the maintenance of parts cars available to hobbyists for motor vehicles undergoing restoration.
  • H.B. 409 establishes no provisions that would enable vehicles located out of public view to avoid being classified as junk.      

DON’T DELAY!  Please contact members of the Montana House Local Government Committee immediately to request their opposition to H.B. 409.  

Please e-mail a copy of your letter to Steve McDonald at  Also, please forward this Alert to your fellow car enthusiasts.  Urge them to join the SAN and help defend the hobby! Thank you for your assistance. 

Montana House Local Government Committee

To e-mail all Committee members, copy and paste the email address block below:
Representative Liz Bangerter (Chair)
Phone: (406) 442-6071
Representative Steve Fitzpatrick (Vice Chair)
Phone: (406) 727-0826
Representative Kathy Swanson (Vice Chair)
Phone: (406) 563-5312
Representative Tom Berry
Phone: (406) 698-3940
Representative Clarena Brockie
Phone: (406) 673-3236
Representative Amanda Curtis
Phone: (406) 782-4149
Representative Roger Hagan
Phone: (406) 459-0773
Representative Pat Ingraham
Phone: (406) 827-4652
Representative Steve Lavin
Phone: (406) 212-3820
Representative Mary McNally
Phone: (406) 671-1376
Representative Jonathan McNiven
Phone: (406) 672-5941
Representative Doc Moore
Phone: (406) 239-3499
Representative Jerry O’Neil
Phone: (406) 892-7602
Representative Casey Schreiner
Phone: (406) 565-0372
Representative Nicholas Schwaderer
Phone: (406) 493-7835
Representative Tom Steenberg
Phone: (406) 721-5869
Representative Nancy Wilson
Phone: (406) 531-6994
Representative Daniel Zolnikov
Phone: (406) 861-5210