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Governor approves new blackout Iowa license plates

DES MOINES — Governor Kim Reynolds has given the green light to a new “blackout” license plate design.

“Evidently it’s popular,” Reynolds said during an interview with Radio Iowa. “I have not even seen one on a car.”

The “blackout” design has been on the road for a few years. More than 800 Iowans have purchased the specialty license plate for the Dordt College Defenders. It has a black background. The letters and numbers are white. Legislators tucked language creating a new “blackout” license plate — without the reference to Dordt College — in a multi-subject bill the governor approved this week.

You may recall that in August of 2017, Reynolds spearheaded a public vote on three designs for new “standard-issue” state license plates. The chosen design and color scheme have sparked complaints.

“We’re so many limited in what we can do because there are so many requirements,” Reynolds told Radio Iowa. “Sure, we’d like all sorts of different things on them. We just don’t have the luxury of doing that.”

Iowans who don’t want the standard-issue license plate can pay extra for specialty plates for their vehicles. As Radio Iowa reported last week, the DOT plans to start taking orders for the new “blackout” plates on July 1.

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