Assemblyman Garcia sponsors bill to honor veterans with special license plates

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Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia (D-33) was among four Democrats who sponsored a bill to recognize honorably discharged veterans by establishing special vehicle license plates and the bill was unanimously approved by the Assembly last week.

Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

The bill (A-1485) would allow the state Motor Vehicle Commission to issue special license plates to honorably discharged veterans and applicants would have to present a DD-214 form as evidence of honorable discharge.

The bill also would allow surviving spouses of deceased veterans to retain the special license plates for display on vehicles they own or lease.

The plates would identify the registrant as a veteran and feature the insignia of the branch of the military in which he or she served. A $15 application fee would be required to obtain the special plates, in addition to the normal registration fee.

“Veterans have made countless sacrifices for the United States and bear burdens most in this nation will never know,” Garcia said in a prepared statement.

“More than just vanity plates, these military plates will serve as a badge of honor for all recipients, signifying their strength and dedication to this country.”

Assemblymen Wayne DeAngelo (D-14), Daniel Benson (D-14) and Sgt. Bob Andrzejczak (D-1) – a U.S. Army veteran of the Iraq war – also sponsored the bill.

“There is a sense of pride and camaraderie among men and women who have served in the military that is entirely unique to them, and they ought to be able to express that,” Andrzejczak said in a statement.

“This legislation is a way to show respect and gratitude for veterans’ service.”

The bill was approved 72-0 by the Assembly on Friday and now awaits further consideration by the Senate.