A bill filed Monday by Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) and Rep. James Vallee (D-Franklin) seeks to allow active duty servicemen and women to buy specially designated license plates. Under the proposed bill, any military personnel could request a distinctive emblem from the Registry of Motor Vehicles designating their branch of service and their active duty status. These include:
- The U.S. Army,
- The U.S. Navy,
- The Marine Corps,
- The U.S. Coast Guard, and
- The U.S. Air Force
A newly created emblem would cost approximately $35 dollars and would be affixed to the military person’s already existing license plates on his car or motorcycle. Mr. Tarr, a sponsor of the bill, explained in his announcement of the plan, “Our state has always had a strong legacy of men and women serving our country and protecting our freedoms, and since the terrorist incidents of September 11th their sacrifices have been substantial. Now more than ever, it’s important that our state give official recognition tot he servicemen and women who make us proud every day to be Americans.”
Representative Valle said that the license plates would serve as “small, daily reminders of the big contributions” military servicemen and women make to the state and the country. Under the bill, anyone requesting one of the new active duty plates would be required to show proof of active service. If this bill were to pass, Massachusetts would become the third state to implement an active duty license plate recognition program after Ohio and Connecticut.