The Associated Press
MESA Already, Arizona offers 51 types of specialty
license plates, letting special-interest groups express themselves
on a state-issued metal sign.
Now, even more groups are asking lawmakers for recognition
on the road.
But as the variety of plates grows, so does the number of
lawmakers questioning whether the plates are a genuine service
to constituents or shameless pandering.
"It's just gotten out of hand," said Rep. Karen
Johnson, R-Mesa. "You kind of get forced into voting
for things because it would look bad if you didn't."
Among the groups the state already offers the plates to are
the survivors of Pearl Harbor. The same goes for owners of
pre-1949 street rods, amateur radio operators, environmental
supporters and opponents of child abuse.
Johnson is one of several lawmakers who have protested the
glut of plates and vow to reject any more. They cite concerns
from police that the designs confuse the public and law enforcement.
However, it's tough to vote against a painless way to generate
millions of dollars for causes.