Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White commended the Illinois House of Representatives for passing legislation he initiated to allow private companies to pay for advertising space on vehicle registration renewals. House Bill 394, sponsored by House Transportation Chairman, John D’Amico (D-Chicago), makes it lawful for White’s office to seek private funds to pay for the mailings while creating specific restrictions on who may put their logo or tag line on the postcard. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.
The Secretary of State’s office discontinued mailing reminders in October 2015 due to the lack of funding as a direct result of the state budget impasse. White’s office resumed the mailing August 1, 2016 after the stop-gap budget was passed by the legislature and signed into law by the Governor. At that time, White said he would seek legislation to allow his office to solicit private funds to pay for the mailings.
“The driving public paid the price for the budget impasse when mailings were suspended and it proved to be an unfair burden,” said White. “Although this would help if the budget stalemate continues, I am still urging the Governor and the legislature to pass a budget that allows my office to serve the public without interruption.”
Restrictions outlined in the legislation on who cannot put their logo on the postcards include entities licensed or regulated by the Secretary of State, any person or entity manufacturing or distributing pharmaceuticals, medical marijuana or alcohol, and elected officers, candidates for elective office and campaign committees. In addition, the Secretary of State will maintain sole discretion in determining which, if any, of the applications are accepted, and will exercise final control over the design and content of the vehicle registration reminder notices. The bill specifies the funds may only be used to offset costs associated with vehicle registration reminder notices.
White also emphasized his office continues to encourage the public to sign up for email reminder notices. So far, more than 2.5 million customers have signed up, which reduces the number of mailings and further saves on postage costs.
Vehicle owners can sign up for email reminder notices by visiting the Secretary of State website, www.cyberdriveillinois.com. To register for the program, vehicle owners will need their assigned registration ID and PIN, which can be found on their current vehicle registration card. If that information is not available, they can call the Secretary of State public inquiry division at 800-252-8980 to obtain the registration ID and PIN.
The one-time registration process will allow vehicle owners to receive a series of three email notices per vehicle each year highlighting the upcoming vehicle expiration date.