On July 1, Ohioans will no longer be required to have front license plates on their cars. However, law enforcement and school officials across the state are hoping a proposed bill will reverse the law, saying front license plates make it easier to identify drivers who speed through school zones and violate other traffic rules.
Ohio House Republicans eliminated the requirement for a front license plate in an effort to pass the transportation budget last spring. But last July Sen. Jay Hottinger, R-Newark, introduced Senate Bill 179 in hopes of reinstating the law requiring front license plates. The bill is currently in committee.
Law enforcement have been testifying in support of S.B. 179, saying the front license plate is a useful tool to catch criminals, said State Sen. Peggy Lehner, R-Kettering, noting that she respects the wishes of law enforcement.
The requirement for the front license plate was eliminated because many Ohioans said the plate is not aesthetically pleasing, and auto dealers said it was more expensive to make spots on a front bumper for a plate to go.
“The main argument for getting rid of the front license plate is that people don’t like messing up the front of their car,” Lehner said. “In the overall picture of things, I would say that (messing up your car) is a minor issue.”
House Speaker Larry Householder, R-Glenford, said he is not changing his mind about the front license plate requirement.
“The decision has already been made regarding the front license plate. It was decided in the transportation budget,” he said.