For well over a decade, Oklahomas vehicle tags have borne the slogan Native America along with an Osage shield. But Sen. Clark Jolley, co-chair of the Oklahoma License Plate Design Task Force, says its time to update those tags, many of which are now a public safety concern because of fading, making them difficult to read.
Since we need to update our tags for public safety reasons, its also a great opportunity to rebrand our image on the tag. The slogan Native America is a brilliant way to market our state, but people outside of Oklahoma may not understand the symbolism of the Osage shield, explained Jolley, R-Edmond. Our tags are really like billboards for our state, so we want to update the design to something that will better market Oklahoma as a tourist destination while also making sure public safety needs are met.
At Tuesdays task force meeting at the State Capitol, officials with the Department of Tourism and Recreation presented about 26 different tag design prototypes, with task force members narrowing it down to five choices. There are two different versions of a tag depicting the Guardian statue, which sits atop the State Capitols dome. Another tag depicts a cowboy doing rope tricks. There are also two variations of a tag depicting a statue of a Native American shooting an arrow into the sky, which stands in front of Tulsas Gilcrease Museum.
At this point, Tourism will refine those designs, and ultimately theyll be placed on their website so that the public can give their input on the selection. Well also have the input of the Governor, Department of Public Safety and others. My hope is that well have the new tag selected and available to the public in early 2009, Jolley said.