Chambers’ Washington wine license plate bill, which will boost state tourism funding, signed into law

A bill sponsored by Rep. Kelly Chambers to create a specialty Washington wine license plate has been signed into law by Governor Jay Inslee.

Under House Bill 1530, a fee of $40 will be charged for the plate, which will feature a scenic landscape of Washington wine country. All funds generated from sales of the plate, as well as from the $30 renewal fee, will go to State of Washington Tourism to advocate, promote, develop, and sustain destination tourism marketing across the state.

This is an effort multiple years in the making. During the 2019-20 biennium, Chambers, R-Puyallup, sponsored similar legislation that was twice approved by the House, but never made it to the Senate floor for a vote.

“I am so grateful the third time was the charm with this bill,” said Chambers. “Not only was there tremendous grassroots support for creating a Washington wine license plate, but there was also overwhelming support from lawmakers in both chambers. The revenue generated from sales of the plate is really going to help our tourism industry, as well as our small mom-and-pop shops, hospitality businesses, local restaurants, and Main Street retail. In recent years, they have survived lockdowns, mandates, and onerous regulations. I'm pleased we're going to be able to support them with the revenue generated by this bill as they continue recovering from the pandemic.”

Nearly 4,000 Washingtonians signed a petition created by Chambers in support of creating the specialty plate.

Facts about Washington's wine industry (source):

  • Number of licensed wineries: 1,050
  • National rank as wine producer in the United States: 2nd
  • Wine grape acreage: 60,000+ acres
  • Number of wine grape growers: 400
  • Annual wine production: 17+ million cases
  • Varieties produced: 80+
  • Total annual in-state economic impact: $8+ billion

House Bill 1530 was approved 84-11 in the House and 46-2 in the Senate. It will go into effect on November 1.

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov