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Negro Leagues Baseball Museum special license plate new option for Missourians

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missourians will have the option for special license plates honoring the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum under a bill signed into law by Gov. Mike Parson this week.

Sen. Barbara Washington’s SB 189 will allow vehicle owners to apply for a special Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (NLBM) license plate upon donating $10 or more to the museum. Rep. Mark Sharp sponsored the same language in the lower chamber and handled Washington’s bill. It ultimately passed through both chambers unanimously. 

“I am elated that the governor signed SB 189 today. Rep. Mark Sharp and I worked hard to get this bill passed,” Washington told The Missouri Times. “This legislation will provide another tool for the NLBM to raise funds. As someone who has family members play in this league, it has always been my honor to fight for this amazing organization since I arrived in Jefferson City.”

The museum, located in Washington’s district in Kansas City, is a privately funded, not-for-profit group dedicated to celebrating the history of African Americans in baseball and their impact on America’s pastime. It was founded by four former Negro League players in 1990 and was recognized with the Gold American Award for Nonprofit Organization of the Year by the American Business Awards in 2019. 

Parson will hold a ceremonial bill signing on May 22 at Kauffman Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals.

The Kansas City Monarchs, the longest-running franchise in the history of the leagues — and former home of famed players Jackie Robinson, Satchel Paige, and Buck O’Neil — are taking to the field Tuesday evening for the first time in more than 60 years. The team plays as part of the American Association of Professional Baseball and was rebranded in tribute to the original team as part of a partnership with the museum.