Under House Bill 2050, a fee of $40 would be charged for the plate, which would feature a scenic landscape of Washington wine country. Funds generated from the sale of the plate would go to the Washington Wine Commission to support research and collaboration with the wine science facility at Washington State University's Tri-Cities campus.
“Washington's wine industry produces more than 17 million cases of wine each year, which contributes $4.8 billion to our state's economy,” said Chambers, R-Puyallup. “We have not had a tourism marketing program in Washington state since 2011, so this would be a creative way to promote one of our most important industries and some of the most beautiful wine country in the world, while also supporting the wine science facility at WSU Tri-Cities.”
Facts about Washington's wine industry (source):
- Number of wineries: 940+
- Number of wine grape growers: 350+
- Wine grape acreage: 55,000+ acres
- Wine production: Approx. 17.5 million cases
- Varieties produced: Nearly 70
- Total economic impact: $4.8 billion
House Bill 2050 now heads to the Senate for further consideration.