Thar she drives! This morning, the California Coastal Commission and the Department of Motor Vehicles officially launched the new Whale Tail® Specialty License Plate.
The specialty "ecoplate" features a picturesque ocean scene, and a portion of the registration fees go to coastal conservation efforts and education. A standard "Whale Tail" license plate costs $50 to register, while a vanity license plate costs $98. However, 100% of the $40 annual renewal fees go to the same charity causes, according to the California Coastal Commission.
A press release at Ecoplates.com reports that about 200,000 plates have been purchased since their introduction in 1997, raising $60.2 million for environmental causes.
That same statement also offered details on the redesign. Simply put, Wyland, the artist of the first design, wanted a 20% royalty fee, so the state retired the plate and launched a contest for a new design.
After receiving more than 300 entries, the California Coastal Commission selected two artists, Elizabeth Robinette Tyndall of Bethel Island in Contra Costa County, and Bill Atkins of Laguna Beach in Orange County. The two collaborated on a new plate.
At a press conference in Santa Monica, the city's mayor and Coastal Commissioner Richard Bloom announced that the first 1,000 people to buy a plate on Ecoplates.com will get $25 off on their order, plus two tickets to a California aquarium.