The Ontario government announced that it will not be moving forward with the redesign of the province’s licence plates and will revert back to the original white “Yours to Discover” plates.
The Ford government began the design and manufacturing of a new plate in February, however, once released to the public, the blue plates with the slogan “A Place To Grow” were found to have issues such as poor visibility under specific conditions.
After the government and consumer services minister originally insisted the new plates were fine, the government acknowledged the problem and said manufacturer 3M would deliver an “enhanced” plate.
“Further work is needed if we were to move forward with the new plates and right now I’m just not ready to put any more resources towards this,” said Premier Doug Ford.
The Progressive Conservatives revealed the new plates in the 2019 budget, saying the government spent $500,000 on a consultation on branding, but had a new contract for licence plate production that saved $4 million.
The province said that around 145,000 of the new plates were created as the government awaited final testing results.
“At this time, we are exploring all options to use these plates where they would be appropriate for an alternative use, such as trailers or recreational vehicles,” the province said.
“In the interim, we will be exhausting all remaining passenger plates that we have in stock, including the existing supply of blue licence plates.”
The province also asked that no Ontarians visit a Service Ontario centre to exchange their plates unless “absolutely necessary” due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The problem was first raised earlier this year when an off-duty police officer in Kingston, Ont., posted a picture of an unreadable plate in a well-lit parking lot at night.
A number of groups expressed concerns about the impact the problem could have on public safety, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving Canada and the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police.
—With files from The Canadian Press