By Stephen Markley on November 11, 2009
The new “Empire Gold” license plate unveiled by New York state this week will be a requirement for almost all registered vehicles next year. The blue lettering on gold background will replace the plate with images of Niagara Falls and New York City’s skyline. Although we’re not New Yorkers here at Cars.com, we feel sympathy for the drivers who must affix these new plates to their bumpers.
The New York Department of Motor Vehicles says the move is due to the degrading reflectivity and “general integrity” of the current plate. The plates have been around for more than 10 years, but that obviously does not mean all license plates in New York are that old.
Perhaps, the budget-busted state is looking forward to collecting $25 on top of registration renewals and new registrations fees (plus $20 if you want to keep your old lettering). This will raise $120 million for the state’s general fund.
You’d think if New York was going to make all of its drivers get new license plates, it would at least go with a design that avoided outright offending the eye. Kind of like the New York Jets throwback uniforms.