I kept my wildlife tag

Even though fees are going up.

When you go to renew the tag for your vehicle, you may be surprised to see that it costs more than it did last year.

The fee for special license plates has increased from an initial cost of around $35-$45 to $80, said Keith Echols, Hall County tax commissioner. Renewal rates have increased from $25 to $35, which is an addition to the annual $20 registration fee that everyone pays.

“A lot of people who have specialty tags have been (surrendering them) because of the extra costs,” Echols said.

“Now they’re just getting regular tags.”

I’d be curious to do a poll of Peach Pundit readers to see which is the most common specialty tag. I’m guess wildlife. That’s the one I have.


  1. griftdrift says:

    I have Wildlife and frankly was a little irritated when they changed the design a few years ago. I love the bald eagle as much as anyone but I”d rather have the whitetail on my rear end. I keep meaning to switch to quail but always forget.

  2. Chris says:

    If you’re a Ham Radio Operator, I’m told you can get you’re call sign tag free. Still have to pay the birthday tax though.

  3. Thig says:

    I have the Joanna McAfee Childhood Cancer tag because a small portion of the tag fee goes to cancer research for children. I would be better off going to regular tag and giving he difference to the Joanna McAfee Childhood Cancer research.

    As a side note, I can remember when the specialty tax was a one time charge the year you got the tag. I can’t remember which Governor made it an extra annual charge just to keep it.

    • Quaker says:

      Because the Georgia Constitution prohibits state and local governments from giving gratuities, we once has to have a separate constitutional amendment and law for each specialty tag. The provisions weren’t unirform for all tags. They became so popular that a catch-all amendment and general law were adopted and now it”s an administrative procedure.

    • LoyaltyIsMyHonor says:

      That sucks. I have that plate too and I chose it because it’s a good cause and also because it’s one of the few colorful plates. Now I’m just going to get a generic one.

      I also read somewhere that some counties are collecting all the canceled specialty tags, then ship them to DOR en masse to show the state how much money it’s losing because of the new fee.

  4. Quaker says:

    I had a wildlife tag until they changed the design to look like a tattoo a drunk Marie might get. Now I have a generic tag. It’s a more efficient use of money to make a donation to the desired charity and get a bumper sticker, if you want one.

  5. Pundit mom says:

    I have two Choose Life tags. Nearly $7.00 of each $10.00 the organization receives from each plate is distributed quarterly to support adoption in the State of Georgia. The cost of the actual tag after the 1st year is $35.00. The extra $$$ is the same that everyone pays regardless of their tag, it’s the annual decal fee of $20.00. It’s crazy to raise the cost of the tags in a state that charges ad valorem taxes on its cars. However, Choose Life of Georgia is not seeing widespread cancelling but about a 20% increase in new sales.

  6. saltycracker says:

    As posted on this site a while ago:

    Had 2 wildlife tags
    Inquired of fee raise,
    Agency told me the new increase signed by Perdue was to increase needed state revenue,
    NONE of the money went directly to my cause,
    ALL of the money went to the treasury,
    wildlife gets whatever the state budget set,
    few tags being sold,
    unless folks not paying attention,
    left with two regular tags

    Is my local county office misinformed, poorly trained or telling it like it is ?

    • Pundit mom says:

      Your local office is telling it like it is. The entire $10.00 increase goes to the state. The cause gets no more than originally agreed, in most cases $10.00 from each tag.

  7. AubieTurtle says:

    Spay & Neuter. I could have bought a normal tag and donated the money but I doubt I would have actually donated more than normal when writing out the check. I don’t like the new fee, it feels like bait and switch but I’m not unhappy enough about it to turn in the plate. Guess they’re counting on many others feeling the same way.

    Fun Georgia license plate factoid: Georgia is one of the few states that will issue the same plate number on multiple designs. So while many plates have their own set of prefixes, not all do. This is especially true of ‘1’ plates which the Governor has one, the presidents of UGA and Georgia Tech have ‘1’ plates in their respective school designs. There is probably a ‘1’ plate for just about every design out there… well except perhaps the UF tag which I hear they wanted to use the prefix ‘666’. (ok, that last part isn’t true)

  8. Comfortably Southside says:

    I have the UF Tag. Dang sure looks good, I think the State will probably get more of my money again this year… Go Gator’s

  9. seenbetrdayz says:

    “A lot of people who have specialty tags have been (surrendering them) because of the extra costs,” Echols said.

    “Now they’re just getting regular tags.”

    Well, golly. Who would have thought that would happen?

  10. gatormathis says:

    Have 3 of the Ag tags and a few generic…

    …..likes the way the gator tags look……is that a bad thang?????

  11. NoTeabagging says:

    Spay and Neuter. I was finally going to support this and buy a tag this year. The information here convinced me it would be better to donate directly to a cause than pay such high fees just to advertise the cause on my car. It is most annoying to learn that very little of the extra fees actually supports the cause. Wildlife support would be my second cause, but again, if the money does not boost the budget for DNR, parks, or habitat protection what’s the point?

  12. Obis_Sister says:

    I used to have UGA tags, but let them go a few years back.

    However, I must say I see way too many GATORs on GA tags. It’s a sacrilege, I tell you, sacrilege!

  13. saltycracker says:

    Gators are toothy lizards, thus not too smart, and good for GA’s treasury. The tag makes ’em easy to pick out & target.

    Go ‘Noles

  14. Ron Daniels says:

    I draw issue with these specialty tags because they generally do not display the county from where someone originates.

    I’d like to know that information before getting my vehicle closer to some people on the roads.

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