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Home > News > Specialty License Plate to Benefit Animal Welfare

For Immediate Release
September 15, 2008
Contact: Don Cookson

Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap Accepts Reservations for Specialty License Plate to Benefit Animal Welfare in Maine

Plate to help address “dire need for animal welfare funding”

Augusta- Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap accepted a check in the amount of $50,000.00 from supporters of a proposed specialty license plate aimed at generating revenue to help fund animal welfare efforts in Maine. “This check represents the good intentions of 2,000 Mainers to mark their support of animal welfare efforts in Maine,” Dunlap said. “Proponents of this effort are to be commended for reaching this important milestone- they are well on their way to establishing a new license plate that will go a long way toward providing much-needed resources for a cause many Mainers hold dear.”

Norma J. Worley, Director of Maine’s Animal Welfare Program, had high praise for the Maine Adoption Leaders Team, or MALT. “Formed just last May, MALT is a partnership between private businesses, non-profit organizations, and the State, working on behalf of Maine’s animals,” Worley said, noting, “cases of animal neglect, animal abuse, and animal cruelty are in the news all too often. Due to the size of several recent animal seizures, made necessary as a direct result of abuse and neglect, additional funding for the Animal Welfare Program is sorely needed. This specialty plate would enable animal lovers in the state of Maine to make a real difference for Maine's homeless animals," added Worley.

MALT is comprised of Planet Dog, Happy Tails, the Animal Welfare Society, the Animal Refuge League, the Maine chapter of the Humane Society of the United States, and the state's Animal Welfare Program (AWP).

Legislation will be introduced in the upcoming 124th Maine Legislature to establish the plate. The legislation specifies how revenue generated by sale of the plates will be distributed. Specifically, proceeds from the plate will go to the Help Fix ME Program, which provides spay and neuter services, and proceeds will also be used to support animal cruelty and abuse investigations. The AWP is charged with investigating animal cruelty and neglect and also administers the Help Fix ME program. A mock-up showing the proposed design of the plate was on display at today’s event.