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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: September 20, 2019 02:40 PM
From: Senator Kim L. Ward
To: All Senate members
Subject: Vehicle Registration Stickers
I am introducing legislation to reinstate vehicle registration stickers for display on Pennsylvania license plates.

As you are probably aware, Act 89 eliminated the registration sticker requirement beginng in 2017 as cost-saving measure for PENNDOT and in response to the availability of Automatic License Plate Readers (ALPRs) for law enforcement to read license plate numbers in order to help determine the registration status of a vehicle.

The actual realized cost-savings in eliminating the stickers are difficult to calculate because of the increase in registration fees as also done under Act 89. However, there was a big enough decline in vehicle registrations in 2017 to question whether people aren't renewing registrations, either by accident because they no longer have a visual reminder to do so, or on purpose because there is no visual cue to law enforcement as to the status of the vehicle's registration. This decline also shows a definite loss of registration revenue.

The use of ALPRs have not been as wide-spread as was anticipated when Act 89 passed. The price of the devices themselves as well as the expense of data storage they require have made the use of them cost-prohibited for most law enforcement agencies. As an example, the Pennsylvania State Police only have six ALPRs in use. Even when police have them, a lack of interconnectivity among them have resulted in ALPRs not being utilized to their fullest benefit.

ALPRs are a great tool for law enforcement in providing public safety as are registration stickers. Both enable officers to make a quick determination as to the registration status of the vehicle which many times leads to the discovery of more serious offenses like stolen vehicles. Without either registration stickers or ALPRs, law enforcement is left to use mobile offices which require them to do data entry while on patrol.

I hope you will join me in this endeavor to better ensure safety on our roadways.

Introduced as SB954