Maine drivers can now support pets with their license plates. Last week the state started selling the new Support Animal Welfare specialty plate to benefit the Animal Welfare Auxiliary Fund and the Animal Sterilization Fund.
The project has been a year in the making since Maine’s Animal Welfare Program, Planet Dog, Happy Tails, the Animal Refuge League, and the Animal Welfare Society teamed up to create the Maine Animal License Plate Team (MALT). For the proposal to be considered, the team had to pre-sell 2,000 plates, which they did in a record breaking 78 days, raising $50,000.
The license plate will support initiatives that investigate cruelty and neglect complaints, train animal control officers and inspect and license kennels, shelters, pet shops and research facilities. In the past, these programs were funded exclusively by dog- and facility-license and pet food registration fees, but money has been tight in the recent years.
I appreciate that Maine has added an affordable and easy way for everyone to help the state’s worthy animal causes. The fee for a similar license plate in New York is more than double!
The plates can be purchased at the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles, at some town offices, or by mail. The fee is $20 in addition to the regular registration fee. Each renewal is an additional $15.