“In God We Trust” license plate bill passes committee

Several years after the national motto – “In God We Trust” – was emblazoned upon the House and Senate chambers, Rep. Jim Gooch is leading a push to put it on Kentucky license plates, too. 

This is the second year Gooch, a Providence Democrat, has filed legislation to allow for the creation of a license plate with the motto. 

Under House Bill 24, passed unanimously today by the House Transporation Committee, the state would make the plate available as a standard-issue plate, similar to the “Unbridled Spirit” plates that adorn most Kentucky vehicles. 

The group Reclaim Our Culture Kentuckiana (ROCK)  had applied for a specialty plate with the motto, but has been denied by the state Transportation Cabinet because the legislature is considering the standard-issue plate. 

ROCK, like other groups in the state, had applied for the specialty plate that would cost motorists extra with the proceeds going to the organization for its use. 

Gooch said he didn’t believe that a plate with the national motto on it should be used to benefit one group. 

“I don’t think any group should be able to take up that motto” and benefit financially, Gooch said. 

After Indiana created a standard issue plate with “In God We Trust” on it, the state was sued by the ACLU, which claimed that motorists that wanted the plate were given preferential treatment. 

Gooch said that lawsuit has been concluded in favor of the state of Indiana, and he didn’t anticipate any legal opposition to the measure. 

House Bill 24 will now head to the full House for its consideration.

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