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Coming soon: 'In God We Trust' tags

Thanks to Adrian Marshall for the link.,0,2425060.story

Coming soon: 'In God We Trust' tags
Bill Kaczor | The Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE - A pair of new license plates featuring the state motto -- "In God We Trust" -- will be created by two of several new laws going into effect Wednesday.

One of the tags will prominently feature the motto in a new specialty design, while the other adds the language to the current tag design.

Standard plates without the motto will continue to be available at no extra cost starting Wednesday, said Courtney Heidelberg, a spokeswoman for the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

The specialty tag bill was passed after lawmakers removed a provision that would have created another plate featuring images of a Christian cross and stained-glass church window and the words "I believe."

It was removed after opponents argued such a tag would have resulted in a court challenge.

Other new laws will:

*Make dating violence a crime similar to domestic violence. The law was inspired by the murder of two University of Central Florida students, one of whom had reported threats from an ex-boyfriend. Authorities said before the killings they had no crime to charge him with.

*Allow civil lawsuits on behalf of child-pornography victims against people who distribute or download the material. Victims could win damages of as much as $150,000 per image.

*Increase fines for motorcyclists who stunt ride or exceed the speed limit by more than 50 mph. It carries a maximum prison term of up to five years for a third offense.

*Require a minimum sentence of life imprisonment for anyone who kills or attempts to kill a law-enforcement officer.

At least six other states offer "In God We Trust" plates. The American Civil Liberties Union challenged Indiana's plate, but courts so far have found it legal.

The specialty tag will have the motto in the body of the plate -- one of four such tags authorized by the new law, adding to the dozens of special-interest plates already available. The $25 additional cost is essentially a charitable donation that funds a designated program.

Other plates featuring "In God We Trust" also are available, at no extra cost. On them, the language will replace the current spot on the Florida license plate, below the image of two oranges and a sprig of orange blossoms, where the motorist's home county or "Sunshine State" is currently displayed.



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