DMV to Issue License Plate Decals
Because of the new two-year auto inspection system, New Jersey Motor Vehicle Services will begin issuing annual registration decals for license plates.
The stick-on decals will start being issued for regular passenger vehicles due for registration after Oct. 31. Renewal notices for those vehicles will start being mailed by the end of August.
C. Richard Kamin, director of Motor Vehicle Services, explained that until now, private vehicles have been inspected every year at the time of registration renewal.
"Since a registration certificate is always required for passing inspection, the inspection sticker in the front window has always served as visible proof of registration," Kamin said. "But now, with two-year inspections, the decals are necessary so police officers can tell if a car is registered, without having to stop the driver and ask for proof."
The new decals will be attached by the vehicle’s owner and displayed in the upper right corner of both the front and rear license plates.
The instructions that come with the decals tell the owner to make sure the upper right corner of the plate is clean and dry, then to peel the backing off the decal, and finally to press it in place.
"It’s the same routine that drivers in 47 other states and 11 Canadian provinces already follow," Kamin noted. New Jersey already issues registration decals for all commercially registered vehicles.
Kamin also said that in spite of how easy it will be to put the decals on the plate, they will tear if someone tries to peel them off for use on another plate.
Decals will be a different color each year. The decals issued in November and December of this year will be orange, with the month of expiration and the year 2000 in black letters. Beginning in January, the decals will be purple, with the expiration month and year 2001 in black.
The new decals will be issued over the counter at motor vehicle agencies and by mail from Trenton at the time of registration or renewal.
The decision to use the decals was made after New Jersey switched to a two-year inspection program late last year in response to stricter federal clean air standards.