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You know it, I know it, the people of Washington and America know it. Even the whole world knows it.  Central Washington is apple country.  But you wouldn't know it by our state license plates.   But just maybe that's about to change.

12th District State Senator Brad Hawkins hopes to honor our iconic Washington apples in 2020 by introducing legislation to create a Washington apple license plate.    You can see a picture of the prospective plate at Hawkins' website.

Hawkins is teaming up with the Washington Apple Commission and the Washington Apple Education Foundation on the bill, which now has 20 bipartisan co-sponsors. The legislation is Senate Bill 6032 and has been pre-filed for consideration once the legislative session begins on Jan. 13.

Officials with the Washington Apple Commission and Washington Apple Education Foundation are pleased that Hawkins’ proposal could bring more recognition to the state’s most famous and best-selling fruit, especially in a year that has involved the release of the new Cosmic Crisp apples.

“The recognition of the Washington apple industry through this specialty plate, combined with the sponsorship support to the Washington Apple Education Foundation, is a win-win for our apple growers and young aspiring students pursuing higher education. I can think of no worthier cause than to support purchasing a Washington apple license plate,” said Washington Apple Commission President Todd Fryhover.

As part of the process for creating a specialty license plate, the Washington Apple Commission will contribute $6,300 in start-up costs. Additionally, the Department of Licensing requires a collection of signatures showing at least 3,500 apple license plates are intended to be purchased.

The cost of the plates will vary depending on the design and licensing fees required for someone’s vehicle. Most of the specialty plates, promoting Washington universities, sports teams, parks, military, and other interests, range from approximately $60 to $75, depending on the vehicle