By on November 12, 2009

Not the actual plate (courtesy: syracuse.com)

Though New York’s new “Empire Gold” license plates aren’t opening the same constitutional can of worms as South Carolina’s recently-rejected “I Believe” plates, they’re still generating some feisty political opposition. By next April, every licensed vehicle in the state will have to switch to the new plates, at $25 a pop. That’s ten bucks more per plate than the previous models, and keeping your previous number or vanity plate will cost an additional $20. The switch is estimated to raise $129m for the state, which is currently facing a $5b budget shortfall. But according to Newsday, some 57,000 New Yorkers have signed a petition at nonewplates.com, expressing their displeasure with the new plates and their fees. Best of all, the new plates will mean new jobs for 120 inmates in New York’s penal system. The inmates will be paid 42 cents per hour to produce the plates.

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