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Kansas artists sought for new license plate design

California's has palm trees, ocean and sun.

South Carolina's states that it's "Driven by the Arts."

And Texas? It boasts that it is the "State of the Arts."

Now Kansas plans to add to its collection of specialty license plates by creating a plate in support of the arts.

The Kansas Arts Commission seeks designs from Kansas artists who are 10 years old or older. The deadline for submissions is Oct. 15.

When completed, the plate will be among more than two dozen specialty plates offered by the Kansas Department of Revenue. Among other things, the existing specialty plates celebrate the state's major universities, agriculture, antique vehicles, amateur radio operators, firefighters, military veterans, Purple Heart recipients, Gold Star mothers and breast cancer survivors.

Kansas also offers personalized license plates; a new one to be released in January will feature a sunset and windmill.

The old personalized license plate, a buffalo, was one of the state's most popular designs, with more than 80,000 issued.

The arts license plate should also be popular, said Carmen Alldritt, director of vehicles for the Kansas Department of Revenue.

"I hope it surpasses the buffalo. I hope they are very successful and that it is one of the coolest plates out there," she said.

The sale of new specialty arts plate will help pay for arts programs in Kansas. The cost of the plate has not been set.

The arts license plate is scheduled to be produced in 2010 if enough people express an interest. At least 500 people must order the plate before it can be issued, Alldritt said.

People have until Oct. 15 to submit their ideas for the arts plate. Five finalists will be selected. Those designs will be placed on the Kansas Arts Commission Web site, and Kansans will be invited to vote for their favorite.

The winning design will be announced in January. After that, it still must be approved by state legislators.

For more program guidelines and requirements, visit http://arts.ks.gov, or call the Kansas Arts Commission, 785-296-3335 or 866-433-0688.

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