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We have a winner! 42% of 300,000+ voters pick new Tennessee license plate design

The state announced most people liked the blue license plate design with the state outline around the word "Tennessee."

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — UPDATE (10/5/2021): The state of Tennessee has a new license plate design after 300,000-plus people cast their votes.

Roughly 42% of voters chose the blue plate with an outline of the state around the word "Tennessee" over the other three designs. The new plate will be available online and in-person beginning January 3, 2022 when people renew their vehicle registration. Up to 100,000 of the plates will be produced per week to meet the initial demand.

Credit: TN

“In our 225th year of statehood, we invited Tennesseans to cast their vote and help select the state’s next license plate,” said Gov. Lee. “I’m proud to announce the winning design that will represent our unique grand divisions and take its place in Tennessee history.”

Under state law, the license plate is redesigned every 8 years if funds are approved in the General Assembly’s annual budget, according to a release from Governor Bill Lee's office.

Last week, the state answered a burning question many had: how much did the redesign cost?

It said it decided to bring in an outside creative agency to come up with vintage-inspired designs to celebrate Tennessee's 225th year of statehood. The winning vendor, Speak Creative in Memphis and Nashville, was awarded a contract through a competitive bidding process -- which the state said cost $20,000 in services.  

Credit: State of Tennessee

Voting began Sept. 20 and ended on Monday, Sept. 27. The state said 200,000 of the voters were cast in the first 24 hours.

Tennessee statute requires the display of “Tennessee,” “Volunteer State” and “TNvacation.com” on the plate, as well as county name and expiration year decal locations, according to the release. The statute provides that Tennesseans may select an “In God We Trust” plate option.

The release said the new license plate design will replace the current plate that launched in 2006 with modifications in 2011, 2016 and 2017.