Specialty vehicle plate would support Georgia arts

Emergency fundraising drives saved several notable metro arts groups from closing their doors during the recession, and now a different kind of drive to support the arts in Georgia is about to get rolling.

The Georgia Council for the Arts has announced the state plans to produce an arts specialty plate for motor vehicles, with partial proceeds benefiting the council, whose mission is to make the arts accessible to all residents.

The plate features a portrait of Georgia’s founder, Gen. James Oglethorpe, by Carrollton painter Steve Penley, one of the state’s best-known artists. On the bottom is the message “Explore the Arts” and the council’s web address, GAarts.org.

The council is accepting $25 reservations toward the manufacture of the $80 plates. Ten dollars will benefit the state arts agency, which will use the funds to support arts programs in communities across Georgia. The $80 fee, the same as for plates benefiting causes such as breast cancer awareness and wildlife conservation, does not include motor vehicle ad valorem taxes.

A thousand reservations must be logged before the Georgia Department of Revenue’s Motor Vehicle Division puts the plates into production. Reservation forms are available online at GAarts.org and must be mailed back to the council accompanied by the $25 downpayment.