OF CAR TAGS WILL BE ONE OF THE MOST VISIBLE CHANGES IN STATE
Oklahoma vehicles will be getting a dash of color this year at no
added cost to many owners.
tags for cars and pickups will be available Friday at all tag agencies,
said Paula Ross, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Tax Commission.
New tags already have been issued to motorists whose tags expire
do have some on the road already, she said. "After this
month, people will really start to notice them.
colorful tags are replacing existing ones that have been in circulation
20 years, she said.
tags are the result of legislation passed last year, House Bill
3326, which takes effect today. The design is from the late Oklahoma
artist Allan Housers "Sacred Rain Arrow sculpture
at the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa. It depicts an American Indian,
framed against a sky, preparing to shoot an arrow.
tags will be issued to Oklahomans who apply for an original vehicle
registration or who renew their registration. Personalized and specialty
tags will remain the same, Ross said.
regular tags are free unless vehicle owners want to keep their current
tag number. Keeping the old number costs $17 $15 for the
plate and $2 for mailing fees. Applications for the Tax Commissions
License Plate Retention Program may be found on the commissions
Web site, www.tax.ok.gov.
owners originally had to decide by November whether to keep their
tag number, but the Tax Commission has scrapped that provision.
said motorists can decide up until the time they renew their registration
during 2009 whether they want to keep their tag number, she said.
fee to keep the same tag number is expected to bring in more than
$2 million; the money is earmarked for the Public Safety Department
to keep its testing sites open for at least the next year.
1,600 new tags already have been mailed to Oklahoma motorists who
paid the extra fee to keep their numbers, Ross said. Also, 2,400
are in the process of being sent out.
green and white colors and raised lettering on the old plates are
being replaced by digitally printed, maroon tag numbers on a pearl
new tags feature the name "Oklahoma at the top, with
each of the letters bordered in gold. The bottom of the plate has
a narrow blue band running its length, with the words "Native
America printed in pearl white. At the lower right-hand corner
is a white Osage Nation shield, which was displayed in the middle
of the old tags.
new tags should help police and troopers. Many Oklahoma vehicle
tags are difficult for law officers to read because the numbers
for local governments, schools and state vehicles also will be getting
the new tags, replacing the white-background, black-lettered tags.
Farm and commercial trucks also will be getting the new tags.
new tags are made of aluminum instead of galvanized steel.