Global News has learned of Premier Doug Ford’s plans to change the design of commercial vehicle licence plates in the province.
Government documents obtained by Global News state, “This initiative will see us refresh a license plate design that’s been relatively unchanged since the 1960s and — depending on the slogan chosen — help to rebrand Ontario as a business-friendly province.”
The draft document is set to be presented to cabinet next week, with the plan introduced in the legislature and then implemented nine months later.
A source with knowledge of the re-brand told Global News, “The new slogan for the licence plates will likely be ‘Open For Business.'”
“This will be consistent with billboards that the Premier unveiled last year at border crossings into Ontario,” the source also said.
Twenty-five signs at 18 locations near border crossings were unveiled in November with the slogan “Welcome to Ontario Open for Business.”
At the time, the government said the cost to taxpayers would be approximately $106,000. It’s unclear how much the licence plate redesign could cost.
In response to an inquiry from Global News, Premier Ford’s office released a short statement, saying, “While no decision has been made, that is a slogan the Government for the People is considering for commercial vehicles only.”
In response to the statement from Ford’s office, the source told Global News, “The plan as it stands right now is for all vehicles, its not just about commercial vehicles.”
Licence plates in Ontario are currently stamped with the phrase “Yours to Discover.” The slogan has been on most plates in the province since the early 1980s.
NDP MPP Catherine Fife responded to reports of the potential redesign in a statement Friday evening.
“Doug Ford’s ridiculous scheme to turn vehicles into political billboards is a new low in self-serving electioneering,” Fife said. “Redesigning our licence plates to be Ford ads is a colossal waste of money. This is a bizarre ego-driven attempt to turn every licence plate into a Ford vanity plate.”
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