A License Plate to Support Everglades National Park
The Florida National Parks Association (FNPA) is kicking off its campaign to get supporters of the Everglades National Park and Florida Bay to sign up for a new specialty Florida license plate.
The plate, with the tag line Florida Bay Forever, was approved in the last session of the Legislature.
Councilman Stephen Shelley spearheaded this project during his time as Chairman of the FNPA as a creative way of helping to provide much needed financial funding to improve the overall visitor experience to those visiting Everglades National Park.
"I am excited that this plate is finally moving forward and that it could potentially provide a significant ongoing revenue stream to improve park operations and visitor amenities," stated Councilman Shelley. "This is not only important to the Park, but is also beneficial to the "Gateway" City of Homestead."
State Representative Holly Raschine was instrumental in shepherding the request through the Legislature. The legislation states, “Proceeds shall be used to supplement the Everglades National Park’s budgets and to support educational, interpretive, historical, and scientific research relating to the Everglades National Park.”
FNPA plans to use these proceeds exclusively to support efforts focused on the Florida Bay.
The plate features an image from renowned South Dade photographer Robert L. Chaplin. He said, “Florida Bay and its continuing health are vital to South Florida’s economy and quality of life. I was very happy to contribute my image to support the Everglades National Park’s stewardship of the Bay.”
Jim Sutton, Executive Director of the FNPA said, “It has been a 7-year journey to bring the Florida Bay Forever license plate to this point. We are already working with Everglades National Park to identify programs that will directly benefit Florida Bay.”
However the new tag and its support for the Park are not a “done deal”. Included in the bill approving the Florida Bay Forever and 41 other specialty plates was the requirement that 3000 orders for each tag must be received before the tag can be produced. If the required number of orders are not reached within two years the tag will not be produced and pre-paid vouchers can then be used for other specialty plates or be refunded.
Previously only 1000 orders within 2 years were required. Pre-sale vouchers may be purchased at local county tax collector offices, license plate agencies, or online 3rd party tag companies.
The Association is working with the state of Florida to allow purchase through their website, https://floridanationalparksassociation.com as well. Cost of the voucher is $25.00 plus any applicable services charges.
They can also be purchased as a gift for any Florida tag holder.
Stumped as to what to give for Christmas? Here is a great idea that will help the environment, the Everglades and the Florida Bay, and can be purchased safely on-line.