The Expired Meter
Who wants to be driving around Illinois as number 1? According to our friends at
The Expired Meter, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn recently discovered that the state had not issued the plate, in fact, it had been deliberately kept out of circulation. Want to be #1? You can- but it'll cost you.
According to a
Chicago Sun-Times article, the plate once belonged to a group of Chicago-based Roman Catholic Cardinals. After that, it went to an Illinois Secretary of State, after that, the vehicle of a former first lady.
It's been the best non-secret ever kept, but the Sun-Times recently brought the "1" plate to the attention of Gov. Pat Quinn. According to the Sun-Times,
Quinn now has a plan to put passenger plate No. 1 back into circulation.
He wants the plate sold to the highest bidder, with the proceeds going to programs for military veterans.
The governor has long been a proponent of auctioning off coveted low-digit and single-letter license plates, which for decades have gone to those with political clout — including more than a few who ended up being felons. No one can say for certain how much Illinois’ No. 1 might draw. In 2009, though, Delaware plate No. 11 pulled in a whopping $675,000 at auction. And that was No. 11, not No. 1.
“Considering our state is so much larger than Delaware, this is something worth considering,” Quinn spokeswoman Brooke Anderson said. “The governor thinks this particular license plate could possibly be a new source of revenue for the veterans’ assistance programs,” Anderson said. “It could help homeless veterans. It could help treat veterans dealing with post-traumatic stress syndrome. It could help veterans without health insurance. We could look at creating a program that helps veterans get jobs.
Perhaps Chicago should ask notable celebrities for the chance to buy the plate- perhaps Derek Rose, Jonathan Toews, or perhaps Blago (who's now serving time in jail). Either way, the state will soon have a new number 1, but who really wants that much attention? I like my random, seemingly meaningless, license plate.