FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 3, 2003
NEWS CONTACT: Joe Glover – 804-419-4483 ext. 456
RICHMOND, VA – The Virginia General Assembly and Governor have approved legislation creating “In God We Trust” specialty license plates for motorists in the Old Dominion. The Division of Motor Vehicles is now authorized to begin printing the plates, but not before 350 pre-paid applications are received by the Forest, Virginia-based Family Policy Network (FPN), the plate’s sponsoring organization.
FPN is the same organization that last year found a donor to pay for 3,000 copies of the national motto, providing one for every public school in Virginia. Last fall, FPN President Joe Glover enlisted Delegate Kathy Byron (R-Campbell County) to carry the motto plate legislation in Virginia’s House of Delegates. The key moment for the bill came when a House committee voted to include “In God We Trust” in an omnibus specialty plate bill that would be certain to pass the full House and Senate later in the legislative session.
Family Policy Network sent a statewide email to supporters in Virginia the day before the House Transportation Committee voted on the proposal, soliciting immediate grassroots support for the legislation. Just minutes after the FPN alert was transmitted throughout Virginia, Transportation Committee members began to see their computer screens fill with messages of support for “In God We Trust” plates from citizens in Abingdon, Alexandria, Bedford, Brookneal, Charlottesville, Chester, Chantilly, Colonial Heights, Fairfax, Forest, Gloucester, Glen Allen, Gordonsville, Herndon, Lynchburg, Madison, Mechanicsville, Middlebrook, Midlothian, Moseley, Norfolk, Prince George, Richmond, Roanoke, Ruther Glen, Stephens City, Virginia Beach, Woodbridge, Wythville and Yorktown. The committee vote to include “In God We Trust” was 21-0.
When legislators consider authorizing new specialty plates, they sometimes question whether there will be adequate demand from motorists to purchase them. While legislators ordinarily don’t care to receive email from other legislators’ constituents, the immediate feedback from FPN supporters throughout the Commonwealth indicated a strong statewide interest in purchasing the plates.
Now that Virginia’s “In God We Trust” plates have been authorized by the General Assembly, the Division of Motor Vehicles will issue them only after 350 paid “pre-applications” have been received by the plate’s sponsor organization, Family Policy Network. Motorists wanting to submit one of the 350 prepaid applications required for these plates must complete DMV’s VSA-10 form and submit the $10 fee and application to FPN. Checks should be made payable to “DMV” and sent to FPN at P.O. Box 1199, Forest, VA 24551.