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New Turquoise Centennial License Plates Now Available

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The new plates are available at all Motor Vehicle Division offices across the state

Remember those turquoise license plates the state unveiled some months ago. Well, they’re available now if you would like to get one for your car.

Gov. Bill Richardson and other state officials issued the first of the new centennial license plates Thursday in Santa Fe, according to a news release from the Governor’s Office.

The license plates commemorating 100 years of New Mexico’s statehood are now available at all Motor Vehicle Division offices across the state, the news release said.

The plate, which was unveiled in August by Richardson, incorporates a “retro” design based on license plates of the past, the news release said. Against a turquoise background, a nod to the state gemstone, it follows law and custom by including the red and yellow colors that the Spanish brought with them to the New World, and the Zia symbol that is on the state flag.


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The news release also said that after commemoration activities end in 2012, the phrase “Centennial 1912-2012” on the plate will be replaced and the turquoise plate will continue to serve as one of the two official state plates. The other is the classic yellow plate that has been in existence in various forms since 1980.

The turquoise centennial plate replaces what has become known as the balloon plate, which was first introduced in 1999.