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SALT LAKE CITY — Utah is halfway to getting its law enforcement memorial license plate into production.
A bill authorizing the plate was passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Gary Herbert earlier this year, clearing the way for Utahns to begin ordering them. However, 500 plates must be ordered before production can begin and the option can be made available through the Division of Motor Vehicles.
Weber County Sheriff's Sgt. Danny Driggs, an executive board member for the Utah Law Enforcement Memorial, said about 250 plates have been ordered so far.
"We're about halfway there," he said.
Driggs first designed the plate in 2012 after Ogden police officer Jared Francom, a friend of Driggs', was killed in a shootout as police attempted to serve a search warrant on a home.
The license plate features both the American and Utah flags, the phrase "All give some, some give all," and the "thin blue line" stripe of a black band with a blue line running across the bottom. Driggs said the design is meant to be universally applicable to law enforcement agencies across the state.
"There are people who have had people who died, that are police officers or deputies, who wanted something more universal," he said.
Driggs noted there is a Utah Highway Patrol "honoring heroes" license plate already available in the state, featuring the star badge troopers wear marked with a black memorial band.
Driggs designed the new plate on his own, without talking to anyone from the law enforcement memorial, but his idea eventually led to him joining the board and getting its support seeking to make the license plate available in Utah.
If 500 plates aren't ordered before the July 2019 deadline, the plate will not be produced and payments will be refunded to those who have signed up.
"We have to get the first 500, otherwise it won't happen," Driggs said. "We'd like to get it done as soon as possible, so if people are waiting to just go to the DMV and get it, they really should send something in now (instead)."
Orders can be placed by downloading the application form and mailing it to the Utah Law Enforcement Memorial, along with a check or money order of $54. A plate with personalized characters costs $99. The plate is available to anyone in the state wanting to support law enforcement, Driggs said.
After the first year, the plate is $35 to renew, Driggs said. That money is tax deductible and goes to support Law Enforcement Memorial projects, such as support for families of fallen officers, providing plaques for officers' headstones and upkeep on a memorial at the state Capitol.
More information about ordering the plate is available at utahsfallen.org.