How to buy
Take your existing plates and vehicle registration to your county treasurer's office and tell them you want to buy the natural resources plate. After you pay the fee of $45, you will be issued your new plates, and when your plate renewal anniversary arrives, the renewal fee ($25) will be included in your annual registration bill.
Iowa's five most beautiful license plates, the natural resources plates, were previously known as REAP plates. One natural resource plate features the state bird and flower (American goldfinch and wild rose), one plate features a beautiful pheasant, one plate shows a majestic eagle, another an Iowa buck, and still another shows a Brook trout, Iowa's best indicator of water quality.
If you want a personalized plate, obtain an application from your county treasurer's office or DOT motor vehicle division office, or website.
Plates that benefit 'the birds' now more than ever…
These plates also provide funding support for the Wildlife Diversity Program, in addition to continuing its support for the REAP (Resource Enhancement And Protection) program. $10 of the purchase price and $15 of the renewal price will go directly to the Wildlife Diversity Program.
County Breakdown of REAP Plates
Where Your Money Goes
Wildlife Diversity Program
$10 of the purchase price and $15 of the renewal price will be directly dedicated to the conservation of Iowa's 550 species of "nongame" wildlife (those creatures not considered sport fish or game). Biologists will use this money to:
- Conduct special wildlife surveys
- Protect habitat
- Track threatened and endangered species
- Promote public understanding of our diverse birds, mammals, fish, reptiles and amphibians
- Match federal grants to protect and manage "animals of concern or in serious decline," such as:
- Grassland and forest songbirds
- Rare amphibians and reptiles
- Winter roosts of bald eagles
- Research on bobcat home range and movements
- Prairie chicken restoration in southwest Iowa
More information on wildlife diversity.
$35 of the purchase price and $10 of the renewal price continues to support the REAP program. Since 1989, REAP has supported Iowa's city, county and state parks; water quality improvements; wildlife habitat and prairie and woodland restoration; public recreation lands; historic preservation and conservation education. Most of the support for REAP comes from gaming revenues to the state, but an important part is from natural resources plates.
Named the nation's best conservation funding program in 1990, here is how the REAP program distributes its annual funding:
- $350,000 Conservation Education
- DNR for administration of REAP
- DNR for land management (parks, mostly)
- DNR for land acquisition and development (open spaces)
- County conservation boards
- Soil and water enhancement
- City parks and open spaces
- Historical resources
- Roadside vegetation
For more information on REAP, talk to your county conservation board or city park and recreation department, or email the REAP Coordinator.
3 Ways to Help Sell the Plates
- Get your local newspaper to run an article about all that REAP has done for your county (the link below shows all the expenditures by REAP in your county since 1990). Explain that part of REAP funding comes from those plates. Compare your county sales record with other counties
- Visit your county treasurer's office to see if they have a natural resource license poster up and plenty of the brochures. If not, order more (free) from the REAP coordinator and take them to their offices. County conservation and soil and water conservation districts should also have a supply of these posters and anywhere else in the county where they seem appropriate.
- Encourage all on your county committee to buy the plates and to talk to their friends about it, as well.
Once you have completed the application, it may take several weeks for DOT approval of your personalization. It is limited to 5 characters. The personalized plate is $90 for the initial purchase, then $30 a year thereafter for renewal.
You can buy a gift certificate for the regular plate at $45 or the $90 personalized plate at your county treasurer's office. The gift receiver will have to follow through with the treasurer's office by bringing in their old plates and registration.