Sure, I'm still put off that New Jersey remains the only state without an official state song, and we all know it should be "Born To Run" by Bruce Springsteen. But we have plenty of other official state things. We have a state fish (the brook trout). We have a state fruit (blueberry). We have a state microbe for crying out loud (streptomyces griseus).

Well, we also have a state animal. The horse. And the horse has been our state animal since 1977. That's almost as long as "Born To Run" has been out.

Domestic horse on a field, Czech republic
Tatiana Dyuvbanova

Now we may have the horse license plate. And I'm here for it. Let me tell you why.

The horse license plate would be one of those specialty plates you pay extra for at MVC. You've seen the Pinelands plate which raises money to protect that land. The Shore To Please plates raise money for shore cleanup programs.

The horse plate would raise money for a very worthy cause.

The monies generated from the sale of this license plate will not only help our beautiful state animal, the horse, but also people with special needs and veterans who benefit from programs that combine riding and therapy,” state Assemblyman Kevin Rooney explains in a statement. “Deserving residents experiencing disabling mental and physical health conditions will be able to experience a horse’s healing gifts thanks to this bill.

New Jersey the garden State, view of license plates in a flower garden
Kathleen Gail GettyImages

My own children who have autism are enrolled for equine therapy this summer. Some say it does amazing things for people with ASD. It's not just autism. Equine therapy helps with a wide range of things, even veterans with PTSD and depression are benefiting from this. It improves a person physically with balance, muscle strength and coordination. And also helps with cognitive, social and emotional issues.

I can't think of a better way to honor the horse than to give to this worthy program.

It's already been unanimously approved in the State Assembly but it's hung up in the State Senate having not gotten out of committee yet.

people on horse
Agnieszka Pastuszak-Maksim

The cost of most dedicated plates is $50 initially then a $10 annual renewal. The cost of designing and manufacturing the plates has to be covered by that revenue for the program to become a reality so if this gets passed as long as 500 people order the horse plate it will come to fruition.

Count me in as the first one.

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