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Michigan's lighthouse fundraising license plate gets new look

They said a picture is worth a thousand words.  Supporters of Michigan’s lighthouses are hoping a picture will be worth thousands of dollars.

A new design has been unveiled for the state’s lighthouse fundraising license plate.


State officials said many of the state’s lighthouses are in poor condition. Much of their support, historically, has come from private organizations. Lighthouse supporters said they’re hoping a new license plate design will generate new revenue for Michigan’s old lights.


Bryan Lijewski is an architect at the state historic preservation office. He said new plate purchases bring in $15 more revenue than plate renewals, so, he’s hoping people will opt to buy the new plate when they renew their tabs.


“We weren’t planning on updating the plate until we started doing some investigation and asking some questions and thinking about how we can improve the lighthouse fund. We thought that was a good a thing to do in order to retain that interest in the lighthouse license plate and get new people interested who perhaps hadn’t been interested before”.


Ric Mixter is the President of the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association. He said lighthouses have a significant economic impact on their home community.  


“If you look through a yellow page listing or a search with the word lighthouse the majority of the things that would come up would be people who have associated themselves. You know a condominium group based on a lighthouse. Its very few that are actually working that lighthouse.


Mixter said working to ensure the iconic structures have funding into the future is important.