Today, the Texas Department of Transportation Commission (TxDOT) approved pricing for the re-launch of the so called My Plates program.
My Plates is a private program created by the state legislature to offer Texans more choices in the color and design of their license plates, while at the same time raising money for state services.
In just a few weeks of sales in 2008, about 1300 Texans bought My Plates for their cars, helping the program raise about $170,000 for state programs and services.
The program is said to be popular because it costs taxpayers nothing and offers all Texans a choice in car customizing.
However, the first company awarded the contract to run My Plates ceased operations last fall as the Great Recession took hold. Ah, the perils of the not so free market.
So in August 2009, the DOT awarded a new contract to a joint venture between Pinnacle Technical Resources of Dallas and Etech, Inc. of Nacogdoches that will allow My Plates sales to resume this November 19.
Every one of the original My Plate categories will cost less under the new pricing, dropping from $10 to $200 from last year. There are even a few new designs. The State of Texas receives revenues from the sale of every plate with a guaranteed minimum return of $25 million dollars over five years.
The cost of the plates ranges from $55 to $195 for one year. Prices depend on how many letters and numbers you need to spell out the combination you want on your plate. If you purchase a five- or ten-year plate, the per-year price goes down.
You can create your plate at www.myplates.com. Just choose the plate color and design you like and check the combination. As of November 19, you can purchase the plate online then pick it up at your county tax office a few weeks later.
TxDMV begins operations on November 2, 2009. It is responsible for the registration, titling and credentialing of personal and commercial vehicles. To learn more, go to www.TxDMV.gov.