Sitting in traffic today I noticed that the battered gray Dodge Ram 15-passenger van directly in front of me at the light was sporting a Liberty plate. A closer look revealed that it was an “official” tag – meaning state, county, or municipality vehicle. Being in the state capital, we see plenty of official tags. But not expired 7-years ago official tags. The light changed and the van turned the corner and I could see the circular seal of Albany County on the driver’s door. Yes, an Albany County vehicle with expired tags…. 7 years expired.
I memorized the plate number, and when I got home, I called the county office. Mostly, I wanted to hear what they’d say. The woman at the department which oversees the vehicle pool was astounded to hear that those plates had been phased out so long ago and that this is probably something that needs to be looked into. She was great, and wrote down all the information, then asked me to stay on the line and tell the story to someone else who didn’t answer. I don’t suppose I’ll know what the explanation for the old plates is, but it was amusing in an annoyed-taxpayer-finds- government-ineptitude sort of way.