in 1994, Maine began offering specialty license plates for an extra charge beyond registration, with a portion of the extra fees going to a cause depicted on the plates. Currently there are nine specialty plates available in Maine.

The Bangor Daily News gathered the data of sales from specialty plates in 2015 and learned that since the program began, $40 million has been raised for these causes. That data also revealed in 2015, how many cars had each plate. Which plate is the most popular? Let's look at the numbers and count our way to down (up?) to number one.

 

9. University of Maine System Specialty Plate - 4507 cars

Introduced in 1995. The University of Maine System Scholarship Fund receives $14.00 from each University of Maine System plate purchased or renewed.

 

8. Support Your Troops Specialty Plate - 5850 cars

Introduced in 2008.  The proceeds from the Support Your Troops specialty plate provide financial assistance to the members of the Maine National Guard, residents of the State who are members of the Reserves, the families of those members, or will be used for other emergencies and special needs as determined by the Support Your Troops Advisory Board.

7. Black Bear Specialty Plate - 10,006 cars

Introduced in 2004. The Maine Black Bears Scholarship Fund receives $10 from each Black Bear plate purchased or renewed.

 

6. Animal Welfare Specialty Plate - 15,190 cars

Introduced in 2010. The proceeds from the Support Animal Welfare specialty plate are equally distributed between the Animal Welfare Auxiliary Fund and the Companion Animal Sterilization Fund.

 

5. Agriculture Specialty Plate - 15,682 cars

Introduced in 2008. The Maine Agriculture Education Fund receives $10.00 from each purchase and renewal fee. The Agricultural Plate generates funds to be used for Agricultural education in Maine. Training and materials for teachers, grants for agricultural programs in school and field trips are some programs these funds support.

4. Breast Cancer Support Specialty Plate - 23,232 cars

Introduced in 2009. The proceeds from the Breast Cancer Support Services specialty plate raises money to be deposited into the Breast Cancer Services Special Program Fund, established by the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention equally distributes the funds to a breast and cervical health program within the center. This health program provides services to underserved people with breast health and breast cancer needs and provides funding for cancer research, education, and patient support programs.

 

 

3. Sportsman Specialty Plate - 24,717 cars

 

Introduced in 2008. The Sportsman Plate funds are distributed to the Fish Hatchery Maintenance Fund; the Boat Launch Facilities Fund; the Maine Endangered and Nongame Wildlife Fund; and the Support Landowners Program.

 

 

2. Lobster Specialty Plates - 27,348 cars

Introduced in 2003. The Lobster Research, Education and Development Board receives $10.00 from each Lobster Specialty plate purchased or renewed.

 

 

1. Conservation Specialty Plate - 43,337 cars

Introduced in 1994. The Maine Environment Trust Fund receives $14 from each set of plates purchased or renewed to support state parks and the Endangered and Nongame Wildlife Fund.

 

If you want to learn more about Maine's specialty license plates and maybe get your own, there's a link for that.