HAZARD – Kentucky’s Friends of Coal license plate in 2011 was again the highest selling specialty plate in the state, according to Perry County Clerk Haven King.
King, who also works as director of the pro-coal lobby Coal Mining Our Future, released the figures this week, noting that 15,475 Friends of Coal plates were sold in 2011. That’s more than double the next best-selling plate, the state’s Army veteran plate, which sold 6,664 last year, and nearly triple the number of University of Kentucky plates sold during the same time period.
King noted that more Friends of Coal plates were sold in the clerk’s office in Perry County than in any other county, adding that he believes they are a good advertisement for the coal industry in Kentucky outside of the coalfields in the eastern part of the state.
“When they go down to Myrtle Beach, they go down to Florida, or they’re up in Cincinnati or Lexington, what a good ad that is,” he said.
King credited Coal Mining Our Future and its member companies – TECO, ICG (now Arch Coal), James River Coal and Pine Branch Coal Sales – with leading the effort to gather the signatures required to produce the plate.
“Those four companies where the ones that made that thing possible,” he said.
Since the Friends of Coal license plate began production in 2009, close to 57,000 plates have been sold statewide, with an additional 1,940 motorcycle plates sold since last year when it went into production. King added that the motorcycle plate bearing the Friends of Coal logo was the result of a collaboration of Coal Mining Our Future and Coal Operators in Pikeville, as they worked together to gather the signatures needed.