(AP) — A group that petitioned for a customized Texas license plate featuring the Confederate battle flag has asked a federal appeals court to revive its lawsuit against the state officials who rejected its design.

A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals didn't immediately rule Wednesday after hearing arguments on both sides of the dispute.

The Texas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans sued in 2011 after the state Department of Motor Vehicles Board denied its application for a specialty plate.

The group says its design honors the memory of Confederate soldiers, but the board concluded it would offend many residents.

A federal judge dismissed the lawsuit in April, ruling the First Amendment doesn't require the state to place the flag on government-controlled property.