Tahoe license plates now offered at DMV | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Tahoe license plates now offered at DMV

by Andy Bourelle

California’s special Lake Tahoe license plates now can be purchased over the counter at the basin’s Department of Motor Vehicle offices, the first time any of the state’s special plates have been sold directly at DMV offices.

“We have been encouraged by the response we have had from people in the Lake Tahoe Basin,” said Dennis Machida, executive officer of the California Tahoe Conservancy. “Now having the plates available locally makes it even easier to get them, and we expect more will take advantage of this opportunity.”

The Conservancy handles the money raised by the plates, using it for wetlands restoration, erosion control and recreational access projects.

About $1 million has been raised so far by the 14,000 plates sold, according to Bill Dillinger, a spokesman for the Conservancy. While much of the money hasn’t been used, license plates funds have helped fund Conservancy projects on the north and south shores. Last week, the Conservancy’s board authorized $132,000 to help construct the Lakeside Bike Trail Project in Tahoe City. With a total cost of $478,000, the project will link the popular West Shore, Truckee River and North Shore bike trails. The continuous 18-mile trail network is the largest at Lake Tahoe.

The cost of the plates is $50 in addition to the annual registration fee. Renewal cost is $40 a year. The Conservancy receives $35 from each purchase.

Only sequentially numbered plates are available at the local DMV offices. Personalized plates must be ordered through the DMV office in Sacramento.

California’s Lake Tahoe license plate program began in 1995.

Nevada also started a similar program about 1 1/2 years ago. More than 10,000 plates have been sold, and more than $255,000 has been raised. Officials have said it is by far the most popular special plate in the state.

In Nevada, initial registration is $61, and $30 for renewal. About $25 of each purchase and $20 from the renewal fees goes toward Lake Tahoe projects.

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