Obama license plate (IL only)

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Illinois residents can pick up an Obama license plate for $50 — and donate to the Illinois Library Association at the same time. (A worthy cause, folks! Showing my librarian bias, here :) )

Edited to add: Here’s the full press release — didn’t have the full info from the link someone sent me before. These are commemorative plates to be displayed on  your vehicle for a 60-day period, then apparently become collector’s items.

The Illinois Library Association (ILA) is pleased to announce the availability of an official Barack Obama special event Illinois license plate.  The plates are available for purchase at www.ila.org/obama for $50 a pair.  Proceeds will help support the association’s activities including iREAD, the summer reading program for Illinois youth.

The election of President Barack Obama represents a historic moment for our state.  These plates will commemorate and celebrate the election of our nation’s first African American president.  The proceeds will benefit libraries, referred to by President Obama as “our windows to a larger world.”

“Libraries are more important than ever in this period of economic instability and more and more people are using them every day,” said ILA President Donna Dziedzic.  “Moreover, study after study have proven that the economic impact of libraries is greater than the amount invested in the libraries’ operations and, in fact, libraries are economic engines in their community.”

In 2005, the then U.S. Senator Obama keynoted the opening general session of the American Library Association Annual Conference in Chicago.  He praised librarians as guardians of truth and knowledge, and thanked them for their role as champions of privacy, literacy, independent thinking, and most of all reading.

“Libraries are the cornerstones of our communities,” said Illinois Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White.  “I am committed to working with libraries across the state to help them serve their patrons and communities at the highest level.  The iREAD program represents an important effort to encourage our young people to read.”

The special event license plates, which read “Illinois Salutes President Barack Obama,” are unique commemorative plates to be displayed on Illinois vehicles for sixty days, beginning February 17 and ending April 17, 2009.  After this date, the Obama license plate will be available for purchase to everyone nationwide to add to their Obama collections.

The plates will be sold at the Chicago Auto Show, February 13-21, 2009 at McCormick Place, 2301 South Martin Luther King Drive and are also available at www.ila.org/obama for $50.

The Special Event License Plate program was established in 1980.  Special event license plates are a unique promotional device available to organizations by the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office to promote various interests of Illinois citizens.  Upon approval by the Secretary of State’s Office, organizations may design license plates to be displayed on vehicles for sixty days.  For additional information on the Special Event License Plate program, visit the Secretary of State’s Web site at www.cyberdriveillinois.com.

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