News Release

Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners

DATE: November 07, 2008
CONTACT: Celeste Bruno
Communications Specialist
1-800-952-7403 x208

Authors Lend their Support to Library License Plates

"There can be few places that serve as both a temple and marketplace of ideas, or as both a respite for and a challenge to the mind and the spirit. The public library is all this, and more." Gregory Maguire, author of WICKED

Lois Lowry, best known as the author of Newberry Medal winners THE GIVER and NUMBER THE STARS and Gregory Maguire, best known as the author WICKED, inspiration for the hit Broadway musical of the same name are offering a unique opportunity to the first individuals who purchase a Massachusetts Libraries specialty library license plate.

Image of libraries license plate

Click image to download application

The specialty license plates feature a “libraries: a world of possibilities” logo and the new Massachusetts Libraries consumer website The Central Massachusetts Regional Library System (CMRLS), which is spearheading the effort, must collect a minimum of 3,000 applications each with a $40 check made payable to the Registry of Motor Vehicles before the RMV will begin production of the plate.

Applicants who submit their prepaid applications to CMRLS by November 30, 2008 will be entered into a drawing. Two lucky winners will be given the opportunity to communicate with Lois Lowry or Gregory Maguire, and to be named as a character in a work-in-progress by one of them or to help invent a name that suits the story.

Proceeds will benefit public, academic, special and school libraries across the state that belong to a Regional Library System. Equitable shares of the proceeds will be made available to qualifying libraries through an open grant process. Funds will not be used to supplant library budgets.

The initial cost of the plate is $40 ($28 goes to the Library Grant Fund; $12 to the RMV for manufacturing costs). There is an additional $20 swap fee when the actual plate is picked up from the RMV. Renewals are $81 every two years ($41 RMV registration fee and $40 for the specialty plate fee that continues to go to the Library Grant Fund).

The plate design process was a collaborative effort. Representatives from library boards across Massachusetts as well as library patrons were invited to offer design suggestions. The Library License Plate Task Force subcommittee formed by CMRLS included representatives from Friends of Libraries, Library Trustee Association, School Library Association, each of the six Regional Library Systems, Massachusetts Library Association and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

To download an application:

Questions? Contact Carolyn Noah at CMRLS (508-757-4110) or email: libraryplates@cmrls.

About MBLC

The Board of Library Commissioners ( is the agency of state government with the statutory authority and responsibility to organize, develop, coordinate and improve library services throughout the Commonwealth. The Board advises municipalities and library trustees on the operation and maintenance of public libraries, including construction and renovation. It administers state and federal grant programs for libraries and promotes cooperation among all types of libraries through regional library systems and automated resource sharing. It also works to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of their geographic location, social or economic status, age, level of physical or intellectual ability or cultural background, have access to essential new electronic information technologies and significant electronic databases.

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