A decade after New York state released gold license plates with blue lettering for motor vehicles, the state has opened voting for the its next design.
New Yorkers can chose from five designs on the state Department of Motor Vehicles website. Polls opened Monday and will remain open until Sept. 2. The Great New York State Fair will also offer an exhibit where visitors can vote on the new design starting Aug. 21, according to a news release from Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s office.
The design that receives the most votes will replace aging empire blue and white plates, most of which are older than 10 years, as well as the empire gold plates.
Plates with the new design will become available in April 2020 through a plate replacement program. Customers with plates that are at least 10 years old will receive new ones when they renew their vehicle registrations over the next two years. The $25 license plate replacement fee will be added to the cost of the vehicle owner’s registration renewal, and residents can pay another $20 to keep their existing license plate numbers.
“The time has come for New York to have a new license plate, which is why we worked hard to create design options that not only capture the heart of the Empire State, but also that our customers will be proud to put on their vehicles,” said state Department of Motor Vehicles Commissioner Mark J. F. Schroeder in a statement.
New York was the first state to require residents to register motor vehicles in 1901, according to LeatherLicensePlates.com, a website that keeps a historical record of license plates. Vehicle owners provided their own license plates for display with their initials until 1903, and then added numbers until the state first issued plates in 1910.
Anyone interested in voting for the new design can do so by visiting https://now.ny.gov/page/s/vote-for-the-next-nys-license-plate-design.