Active members of the Canadian Forces will now be eligible for special licence plates in B.C.

Active members of the Canadian Forces will now be eligible for special licence plates in B.C.

Active military personnel now eligible for special B.C. licence plates

Trustee of Legion branch in Penticton says the province has finally caught up with the rest of the country.

Active members of the Canadian Forces can now drive with distinction, too.

The B.C. government announced Friday that the veterans’ licence plate program has been expanded to include current regular and reserve members of the Canadian Forces who hold a trade qualification.

“I think it means a lot because it sort of felt like (active members) were on the outside, especially because other provinces have already done the program,” said Ed Findlater, trustee of the Penticton brach of the Royal Canadian Legion.

Some 39,000 special licence plates have been issued to B.C. veterans since the program began in 2004.

“This expansion of the program is an expression of thanks from the province, to recognize and support the men and women who serve our country, and I encourage them to display their new licence plates with pride,” Attorney General Shirley Bond said in a press release.

The new program was announced in June, but became active Sept. 1.

To obtain one of the special plates, service members must submit an application accompanied by $5 administrative fee and proof of service to the British Columbia Veterans Commemorative Association, Royal Canadian Legion – BC Yukon Command or the Canadian Peacekeeping Veterans Association.

Findlater said it will take about two weeks for the applications to be approved, and the special plates can then be ordered through an Autoplan broker. There will be no additional charge once the regular plates have been surrendered.

Contact any of the veterans’ associations or visit www.icbc.com for more details on who is eligible for the program.

According to the Canadian Forces website, the military has 65,000 regular members and 25,000 reservists.