Georgia officials will soon roll out a redesigned license plate that still features the Confederate battle flag emblem, months after halting the sales of the state-sponsored specialty tag in the wake of the Charleston, S.C., church massacre.
The Department of Revenue and the Georgia chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans said this week they reached an agreement on the redesign and that it could be available as early as next week.
A draft of the design wasn’t immediately available, but the Confederate group’s leaders said it would eliminate the larger image of the Rebel flag that forms the background of the plate while retaining a small, “blood red” version of the emblem in the foreground.
Gov. Nathan Deal ordered a redesign of the license plate in June after nine black worshippers were gunned down by a suspect described by police as a white supremacist. But he stopped short of calling for the Sons of Confederate Veterans tags to be phased out our eliminated entirely, as leaders in North Carolina, Virginia and Tennessee ordered over the summer.
Georgia law for more than a decade has required a “special license plate for the Sons of Confederate Veterans,” with the proceeds of the sales going to benefit the group. So far, more than 3,500 motorists have signed up for Georgia’s Confederate tag, and the group’s leaders said demand has recently surged.
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