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    Miller, Harding kick-off specialty plate sales

    April 2, 2001

     

    Secretary of State Candice S. Miller and Russell J. Harding, director of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), kicked-off the statewide sale of specialty license plates today by focusing attention on the water quality license plate.

     

    Joining Secretary Miller and Director Harding for the event were John Hertel, chair of the Macomb County Board of Commissioners, and Doug Martz, chair of the Macomb County Water Quality Board.

     

    "For Michigan, the Great Lakes State, there is nothing more important than clean water," Secretary Miller said. "The funds generated from this plate will be invested in water quality initiatives and also raise awareness about Michigan's great identity: abundant, clean, fresh water."

     

    The water quality license plate, which is one of six specialty license plates that went on sale today, will generate revenue for the Water Quality Protection Fund administered by the DEQ. The fund is used to provide grants to local units of government to protect Michigan's waterways.

     

    "Michigan residents have always stepped up to the plate in support of their water resources," Harding said. "Whether actively backing the Clean Michigan Initiative or participating in numerous other programs and partnerships, it is clear that protecting our water is a priority on the state and local levels. The availability of this license plate gives residents an opportunity to show their ongoing commitment to improving water quality."

     

    The water quality license plate features a red sailboat cutting through Michigan's deep blue waters under a cheery orange sun, bringing the message of the importance of protecting the state's water, our most valuable resource.

     

    All of the Specialty License Plates have common design elements, including a blue bar with the word "Michigan" across the top, a highly reflective off-white background sheeting and blue letters and/or numbers.

     

    Specialty License Plates can be ordered at any Secretary of State branch office, by mail or fax. Order forms are being sent with all license plate renewal notices and are available online.

     

    Residents buying a Specialty License Plate will pay $35 in addition to their annual registration fee. Twenty-five dollars is earmarked for the cause, with the remaining $10 paying for the production and mailing of the license plate. Residents wishing to personalize their plate pay an extra $30. Specialty Disability License Plates are also available.

     

    Every time a Specialty License Plate is renewed, a $10 fee is collected for the cause. Residents with personalized plates will also pay a $15 personalized plate fee when renewing. Other specialty plates include:

    1. Agricultural Heritage: Highlighting a red barn, silo and rolling green fields crowned with the sun, the Agricultural Heritage Plate supports agriculture educational programs for grades K-12.

    2. Children: With red hearts and a touching message of "Just Love ‘Em," the Children's Trust Fund Plate raises funds to prevent child abuse and neglect.

    3. Lighthouse: With its striking red-and-white stripes, the White Shoal Lighthouse is set against the blue waters of Lake Michigan to symbolize the need to preserve all 124 of Michigan's lighthouses. The White Shoal Lighthouse is located 20 miles west of the Mackinac Bridge.

    4. Veterans Memorial: Featuring a pair of silver dog tags as a reminder of the men and women who have served their country, the Veterans Memorial Plate supports the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

    5. Wildlife Habitat: Against a backdrop of trees, the distinctive black-and-white loon and her chick rest in quiet waters, highlighting the need to protect Michigan's nongame wildlife and habitat.

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