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The Bottom Line: "Free" Plates Actually Costing All Of Us More Money

Ingodwetrust_3The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette wants the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to evaluate its procedures for handing out "In God We Trust" plates, which are actually costing we the taxpayers a bunch more money because (a) they're free; and (b) they're being peddled like crack:

"The BMV needs to review the legislation establishing the 'In God We Trust' plate and set uniform policies to be followed at each of its license branches. Its uneven procedures appear to place the state in the position of promoting 'In God We Trust' as the standard state license plate.

"The emphasis on distributing the specialty plate is especially puzzling considering the agency's recent efforts to control costs. The 'In God We Trust' plate costs more to make than the blue-and-green standard tag – 50 cents more per plate, to be precise. With 824,504 'In God We Trust' plates distributed as of last Saturday, that's an additional $412,000 the agency has spent on plates. Six months into the year, that takes a hefty chunk out of the $1 million annual inventory cost savings the BMV boasts will be realized by replacing the one- or two-digit county indicator plates with a county sticker.

"The BMV has even discouraged car owners from choosing the more cheaply manufactured standard plate by placing a premium on it. Those who request a new standard plate because their 2003-issue plate has been damaged must pay a $9 replacement fee. But they can accept a new 'In God We Trust' plate with no replacement fee.

"The state requires motorists who want certain specialty plates to provide additional paperwork to obtain their plates. Anyone requesting a Taylor University plate, for example, must produce an authorization form from Taylor and pay a $15 administrative fee and $15 group fee, which supports university programs.

"There were early indications that the 'In God We Trust' plate will cut into sales of plates supporting such worthy programs. In the first three months of this year, sales of the popular environmental trust plate were almost half what they were for the same period a year ago. Group fees from that plate go to the Indiana Heritage Trust fund to buy and protect land.

"The Indiana chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union has sued the state on behalf of an Allen County resident who believes the plate is unconstitutional because it is exempt from the $15 administrative fee charged for other specialty license plates. The courts will have to determine that.

"But BMV officials need to take a close look at policies and procedures involving distribution of the plate. BMV spokesman Greg Cook told Kelly the agency wants to make people aware of the 'In God We Trust' plate but doesn't want to promote it.

"Yet promotion of the plate as Indiana's new standard plate appears to be exactly what is taking place – at an additional cost."

Solution: Revise the law, attach a fee to the plate, move on.

Comments

You could charge $50 for this plate, and it would still sell. Nothing wrong with making people pay for a choice in plates, Godly or not.

I'm not doubting that it would sell. I just don't think people should be forced to pay for it if they don't want it.

And the BMV needs to stop foisting it upon customers.

"I just don't think people should be forced to pay for it if they don't want it."

How many frickin cars are you going to buy in a year’s time? If you don't want it don't take it pretty simple. Something you left twisting lug nuts should understand.

Read before you write, 11:14.

We are all paying to subsidize this plate.

Have they announced the per unit price of next year's plate? I would imagine that the cost discrepancy between the IGWT plates and the new "standard" plates -- if that means anything anymore -- will only grow.

Solution:

Make the IGWT plate the standard plate.

Brilliant, 11:27.

And then the State could spend all that extra money on legal fees.

Make it a specialty plate. Charge for it. Let people choose.

No, Jen, we aren't paying to subsidize the plate. The State is simply making less of a profit, just as it does with motorcycle plates, truck plates, handicapped plates or any of the standard plates that have smaller production runs.

The State isn't losing a dime on this, and where is it fixzed in the laws of nature that we should even have license plates?

So, let me get this straight: These plates cost 50 cents more than the standard-issue plates. Both are given away for free.

If the BMV gives out 800,000 or so, that costs an extra $400,000 or so, and there is no way to get that money back because, as we covered in the prior paragraph, both plates are free.

Explain to me how that doesn't cost more money.

Seriously, Jen. We need you God-forsaken Dems to get in the Statehouse so we can toss Mitch out on his ear.

If the Indiana Democratic Party goes all anti-God extremist wacko nutjob over God license plates, you look kinda fringy, and you run the risk of not getting Mitchie tossed.

Focus on what's important. Really, just shut up, and see who the GOP nominates for President.

As a Conservative, I'm about ready to vote for Hillary and Vi Simpson for Gov. At least they're honest about what they are, and they don't seem too pro-authority.

You need to not piss off anyone in the next year, and you've got a great shot at the Gov.

"So, let me get this straight: These plates cost 50 cents more than the standard-issue plates. Both are given away for free."

Damn, Jen, even for you, that's dumb.

My license plates are anything but free. You're coming really close to showing your true political beliefs.

I'm sorry, 11:36. I know how you love to make things up as you go along, but I'm not anti-God.

As a good conservative, you should be against wasting taxpayer money.

We have specialty plates. Lots of 'em. This should be among them.

I'm a Christian. I believe in God. I choose to promote Indiana University on the back of my car, and I pay extra for the privilege.

The religious attack talking points worked really well for you last cycle. I think you should definitely keep using them.

Interestingly enough, if the GOP nominates Mitt Romney for President, it'll be kind of fun to watch the fundies in your party eat him alive. Ditto Giuliani.

There's a reason Bloomberg jumped ship.

Under Bayh and O’ Bannon the BMV changed titles for the state of Indiana 4-5 times. The differences between the titles were mostly color. Each time new titles were printed thousands were destroyed. Printing companies with political connections made a killing. Where was the outrage then?
This plate cost no more to produce then the green plate. Take away the word “God” and the libacrits haven't anything to cry about.

Were you going to answer the question, 11:39, or just call me dumb?

Two people walk into the BMV. They both drive the same car. They both pay the same for their plates, but one gets an "In God We Trust" plate, which cost the State 50 cents more to make.

Same amount of money in, different amounts of money out.

I know math that's not fuzzy may be hard for you, but try, would you?

For those who couldn't decipher what "poop on you" wrote, it translates into something like this:

DISTRACT! LOOK AWAY! TALK ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE!

Don't you trolls have anything better to do?

"Two people walk into the BMV. They both drive the same car. They both pay the same for their plates, but one gets an "In God We Trust" plate"

Hold on, Jen. At 11:36, you said the plates were free.

Now we're paying for plates? Which is it?

Are you really going to try to argue that because we pay to register our vehicles, it doesn't matter that one "free" plate is more expensive than the other?

Call me crazy, but I think you're avoiding the issue of the extra $400,000 or so because you don't want to admit that it's costing all of us, as taxpayers, to subsidize the "In God We Trust" plates.

Why do you oppose slapping a fee on it and putting it in the same category as the rest of the specialty plates?

"The religious attack talking points worked really well for you last cycle. I think you should definitely keep using them."

You retard. Reread my post. I want you to win. I'm telling you how you can stay out of your own way, and you think I'm backing Mitch?

You need to respond to what's written and not what you wish I would have wrote.

Try to use deeper thinking that the canned slogans you have at the ready.

Why do the trolls hate Hoosiers so much that they want all of us to pay more to support Woody Burton's ideology? (See how fun it is to use their own sophistry against them?)

"Are you really going to try to argue that because we pay to register our vehicles, it doesn't matter that one "free" plate is more expensive than the other?"

There are no free plates at the BMV, Jen.

I wasn't talking about the Guv's race, friend. I was talking about Congress and the Indiana House, where the right-wingers lost moderate voters because they focused on the WedgeWhack!

This license plate isn't going to be so much as a whisper of a campaign issue, but it's worth talking about, isn't it?

But hey, whatever. I'm the retard. Type slower next time so I can follow along.

So if it is decided that Indiana needs a Darwinism license plate supporting science in education, are all God-loving Hoosiers prepared to support the additional 50 cents it costs the State (and thereby themselves) to produce the plate so that it costs the same for an IGWT plate?

Hmmm - don't think that would fly.

If you want a different plate than the official State plate - pay for it!

You win, Jen. I'll agree to charging an additional 50 cents for the plate.

Happy now?

"There are no free plates at the BMV, Jen."

Then you won't mind paying a little more to cover the actual cost of an "In God We Trust" plate, right?

"Happy now?"

Yup. That would be fine.


"DISTRACT! LOOK AWAY! TALK ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE!"

Wrong! I said if a democrat wastes money then it's OK with you Libs.

If a democrat thinks a republican is wasting money then you want to get everyone up in arms.

LIBACRITES UNITE SAVE INDIANA BEFORE ITS TO LATE

Libacrites; liberal hypocrite, democrat mud slingers,

Simmer down, sugar. You'll have a heart attack and wear out your caps lock at the same time.

this stuff really brings the crazies out!! it is amazing that the nutballs have to wonder why they are not in power
people are going hungry and without health care but they are worried about some dumb license plate
that's really doing God's work

"Then you won't mind paying a little more to cover the actual cost of an "In God We Trust" plate, right?"

When are you statists ever satisfied that you've taken enough money?

Why are license plates even necessary?

BTW, I wouldn't have one of those IGWT plates if you paid me.

Ok, "." - if the plates cost the state an extra 50 cents - can't the money spent producing the plates do good elsewhere - re-appropriated to government funded programs like medicaid and food stamps?? (health care and hunger...)

I'm getting an IGWT plate and attaching a frame that says, "...but I'm a little suspicious about YOU!"

12:23,

I don't understand your logic. It seems like the statist position is "we'll take your money through taxes and use it as we see fit, and if it doesn't benefit you, you just have to trust the government's wisdom."

That's what's happening right now with the IGWT plates--taxpayers are covering the costs of new plates, but not all benefit from them.

What Jen is advocating is the opposite of that: people should pay for this service that the government provides, so the weight of the cost falls only on its users.

Government can't always work that way, but for something trivial like specialty license plates, it's the way government should work.

1:50, IGWT is not a specialty plate. It's an alternative standard plate. It does not logically follow there there can only be one standard plate. To say such belies a lack of imagination and creates a world in which possibilities are confined by convention.

You also say:

"It seems like the statist position is "we'll take your money through taxes and use it as we see fit, and if it doesn't benefit you, you just have to trust the government's wisdom.""

This is the most benignly I've ever seen Statism stated.

Statism is, among other things, the idea that all you have is ultimately the State's, and that everything you have or do is done through the grace of the State and ultimately for the benefit of the State.

Having said that, when Jen says "you won't mind paying a little more...," she evidences her heartfelt Statism, because there is never a point for such people where enough is enough.

If given full power, Statists would ultimately engage in discussions of how much should a person be left with, instead of how much the government should take.

In the presence of such a great provider government, only the selfish would ever say "no" to giving such a compassionate parent whatever it says it needs, as everything given to it is, in turn, given back to you. And so it goes.

Cheers.

"IGWT is not a specialty plate. It's an alternative standard plate."

Actually, it's not. From the Bureau of Motor Vehicles website:

"This year, the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles is offering 12 new license plates, including the state's new 'no-fee' specialty plate featuring an 'In God We Trust' design, and a new 'Support Our Troops' military plate."

The "standard" plate says to the world, "This car is registered in Indiana."

Specialty plates say, "This car is registered in Indiana, and this little slogan/logo/whatever indicates how I feel about something in particular, and I paid a little more to make that statement."

Why should the rest of us subsidize your perk? Either make all the specialty plates free, or assign a cost to this one.

I don't doubt they'll still sell.

So how much more does it cost to make the "Support our Troops" plate?

Do you also advocate imposing a fee on the "Support our Troops" plate?

"Specialty plates say, "This car is registered in Indiana, and this little slogan/logo/whatever indicates how I feel about something in particular, and I paid a little more to make that statement.""

The last clause doesn't follow as a matter of necessity or logic.

I believe there is a fee associated with the "Support our Troops" plate.

That's a big part of the problem I have with the "In God We Trust" plates, actually. If we're not going to give our war vets free plates, we shouldn't give them to anyone.

"The last clause doesn't follow as a matter of necessity or logic."

That's the precedent we've had in this state for years.

It costs you more not to have the generic-issue plate.

Well, Jen, you just went in a nice big circle with that 3:03 argument.

"That plate should cost more?"

"Why?"

"Because it should."

Not terribly satisfying, that.

"That's the way we've always done it" has never been a satisfactory proof.

"That's a big part of the problem I have with the "In God We Trust" plates, actually. If we're not going to give our war vets free plates, we shouldn't give them to anyone."

1. Are only combat veterans eligible for the "Support our Troops" plate?

2. Do you advocate giving free license plates to all combat veterans?

3. If there were no fee associated with the "Support our Troops" plate, would you advocate there be one?

Let me simplify it for you, friend:

Why should the plate cost more?

Because it does.

Gotta run, 3:12.

Maybe someone else can answer your questions.

Thanks for driving up my hits. Have a great day!

I have read this whole thread and do not understand why the IGWT people are so upset.

Everyone else has to pay for their speciality plates but the IGWT is actually costing us money?

Either make all of the plates free to whoever wants them or have a cost for every plate except the standard one.

This does not seem that hard....

"Why should the plate cost more?

Because it does."

I'd run off too, if that was the best I had.

So you also advocate charging more for:

Disabled American Veteran
EX POW
Handicapped
National Guard
Pearl Harbor Survivors
Purple Heart
Truck
RV
Antique

All of these plates cost more than the standard plate, yet all carry no additional charge.

Just how far does your rationale extend? Are you going to show some rare consistency?

Your hits are not driven up, because you're getting hit by the same IP address. Try to sell ad space based on your computation of hits, and you'll find out what a real hit tally is.

this guy is obsessed!

If the state charged an extra 50 cents for the IGWT plate would that make TDW happy ?

I think I answered that question earlier, Pike Voter.

Yes.

If the BMV wanted to charge more than 50 cents, that money could go back into the general fund or be dedicated to a specific program.

You may want to double-check your facts, 3:39. I believe the only two plates you can walk into the BMV and get without paying any additional fee are the standard one and the "In God We Trust" one.

It's odd how people get so steamed up over something that's so easy to fix.

Personally, I can't figure out why the BMV is pushing these things like they're going out of style if it takes a chunk out of the agency's bottom line.

If your license plate doesn't say In God We Trust, the terrorists win.

If you read this site, the terrorists win.

I've been trying to puzzle out the two-letter combinations that precede the numbers on the God plates.

It seems to me that the two-letter combinations on the environment plates (for example) are not chosen randomly, and only a few of the possible combinations are actually used. My guess is that HT stands for Heritage Trust, DU stands for Duck Unlimited, NC for Nature Conservancy, and so on.

Maybe the God plates are too numerous to follow this plan, though I admit wondering when I see a God plate that starts out JC...

"There's a reason Bloomberg jumped ship."

RAW Political Opportunism? C'mon, Jen. Use that brian and that private education your parents bought you. Bloomberg left the Democrats in 2000 to run for office, and now has done the same to the GOP. I suppose this is what Parker is paying you for, but that was lame. Best not to throw up one so easily shot down.

By Jen's logic, a quarter should cost 26 cents.

Look, everyone, Coldplay's latest album stopped by to throw rocks at me. Adorable!

No wonder this is so hard for the trolls to understand. Under the Bush administration black is white, up is down and bad is good, so this IGWT plate policy makes perfect sense to them. Kind of a pity that they're so delusional, isn't it?

X&Y: Who is Brian and why should Jenn use him? She's a happily married, successful woman with a sharp wit and seems to make good use of her BRAIN all on her own. I fail to see what some loser named Brian adds to the equation. Just for added interest, I, too, had the "free" IGWT plate pushed on me, even after stating I specifically wanted the Breast Cancer plate, for which I very happily pay the additional money to display.

I saw a pickup truck today with an IGWT plate on it. There was also a bumpersticker on the back window that said,

GAS OR ASS, no one rides for free

Talk about your mixed messages...

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