Why Didn’t We Whine About This Earlier?

Amy Kweskin sent this in, from the don’t-quit newsletter of the California Arts Council:

Senate Bill 691 (Speier)
Did you know that your personalized Arts License Plate purchase does not fully go to the California Arts Council, but results in a contribution to the Environmental License Plate (ELP) Fund as well?

For the past ten years purchasers of the Arts Plate have been contributing $40 of the $70 purchase price and $25 of the $40 renewal fee to the ELP Fund, with the remaining coming to the CAC to fund arts programs for children.

In the past, the revenue from the Arts License Plate was a small part of the overall CAC budget. Now, as a result of the greatly reduced Arts Council budget, the role of Arts License Plate fees to the CAC budget has became of greater importance. The bill SB 691 by Assemblywoman Jackie Speier would exempt the Arts Plate from contributing to the ELP Fund, and instead have the full amount go towards arts funding and distributed by the California Arts Council.

The Arts Plate is the most popular plate in the state. Seven million dollars have been generated for the arts since 1994. DMV reports $2.5 million have been contributed to the ELP Fund in the same period.

Senator Speier’s new legislation aims at bringing fairness to the issue so that people who buy the Arts Plate can be assured that all the funds will be used to support local arts programs and arts education activities.

This bill will be heard initially in the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee on Tuesday, April 19 at 1:30 p.m. Read the Senator’s Fact Sheet on SB 691 at http://www.cac.ca.gov/proposal/SB691factsheet2.rtf

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