The Florida Department of Motor Vehicles has announced a major overhaul of its license plate recycling program.
The changes are the culmination of years of work by the agency and are expected to save the agency up to $100 million a year.
This is the first time the state has actually spent a full year on the project, and the agency said it hopes the changes will lead to reduced theft, increased revenue and reduced maintenance costs.
“This program is not only a win-win for taxpayers, but it is also a win for the people of Florida,” Florida Commissioner of Administration Todd Schleifer said in a statement.
Florida has about 1.6 million license plate readers on patrol. “
This is a tremendous accomplishment for the Florida Department and I am confident that it will benefit the public and reduce the number and types of stolen cars on the Florida roads,” he added.
Florida has about 1.6 million license plate readers on patrol.
To keep the program up and running, the agency will spend about $2.5 million to hire two new staff members to help with the new program.
“We’re going to have a tremendous amount of new technology that we’ll be able to use in this new program, and that technology will help us to keep up with the changes in technology,” Florida Department spokesman Tim Parson said in an email.
“So we are not only going to be able more efficiently collecting license plates from a larger number of vehicles, but also will be able, with this new technology, to collect license plates that will be less valuable to thieves,” he said.
As part of the program, the DMV will begin offering registration cards in 2018 and will soon start issuing a new version of its registration form, which will also be used to issue personalized plates to drivers of vehicles with Florida license plates.
The new system will be offered on the new $5.95-$10.95 licenses, and will be used for license plates issued from October 2019 through February 2020.
Currently, about 20% of Florida’s population has an ID card, and some drivers don’t have the option of obtaining a personalized license plate that can be personalized with their name and address.
If a person with a personalized plate doesn’t have a driver’s license, the license plate will be removed from their vehicle, but if the person is convicted of a felony and a new offense is found on the record, the person will be required to have their plate returned.
The Florida DMV will also begin collecting registration information from vehicles that are lost or stolen and will issue personalized license plates to those owners who meet the criteria.
While the new system may reduce theft, Parson cautioned that the state’s license plate numbers will likely be compromised if the new technology is used.
A new Florida DMV spokesperson said the state expects the changes to reduce the amount of stolen plates on the highways and improve safety.