Preliminary figures show no dip in demand for customized plates
(Concord) New Hampshire drivers love their vanity license plates, and they’re willing to pay 60% more to keep them, according to a new report from the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy. One of the 41 tax and fee increases approved by the Legislature this year was an increase in the fee for a customized license plate from $25 to $40 per year. The $15 annual increase went into effect on August 1st, but Department of Safety statistics for the first month show no significant dip in either the number of customized plates purchased or the percentage of Granite State drivers paying the premium.
"We heard anecdotally that drivers were turning in their vanity plates rather than pay the higher fee, and we wanted to see if the data backed up that story," said Grant Bosse, Lead Investigator for the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy and the author of the new report. "Based on the first month with the higher fee, it turns out at demand for vanity plates is pretty steady at these prices."
Bosse points out that since the higher fee was implemented on August 1st, drivers haven't had much time to react to the hike. New Hampshire has the second highest rate of vanity plates in the nation at 14.7 percent, trailing only Virginia, where over 16% of drivers pay for a custom license plate.
Read the full report:
Vanity Plate Study 10-02-09