UPDATE: Ariz. lawmaker targeting new license plate frame law

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Hefty fines for violation

UPDATE: Jan. 7

PHOENIX -- A Valley lawmaker has submitted a bill to repeal a ban on license plate frames that cover the word Arizona.

The ban went into effect on Jan. 1.

The Department of Public Safety says some dealer and specialty plate frames make it difficult for law-enforcement officers to identify what state the car is from.

Representative Bill Konopnicki says that if that's the case, the Motor Vehicle Division should move the word Arizona down a bit on the license plates.

Other lawmakers might take action, as well, when the regular session begins next week.

ORIGINAL STORY: Many still ignorant of new AZ license plate law

PHOENIX -- Police remind city residents that their license plate needs to be clearly visible from 50 feet behind the vehicle.

But starting at midnight on Thursday you could be pulled over and fined as much as $140.00 for having the state name "Arizona" covered up.

Police say "With different colors and designs on plates now it's difficult not just for the officers but for victims of crimes and witnesses of crimes to be certain what license plate it is."

But attorney Michael Urbano worries the enforcement of this new law could be abused.

"It's just a way for police to conduct pretextual stops and see what's going on." says Urbano.

One Phoenix resident agrees, saying "I think it's a way to get more money."

Still police maintain that the emphasis is on public safety.

With that in mind, Urbano says he is helping people abide by the law and still keep their special frame by fixing their plates for free.

"We've elongated the holes, you can see where used to be the word 'Arizona' covered and trimmed the bottom so now it complies with law."

Some are going back to the dealership to get the license plate holder changed.

Some people say that most folks don't even know about the new law.

"I've told probably about 2 dozen people and no one was aware of it."

And with just one day to go we too found most cars weren't yet in compliance and most drivers had no clue