Two plates might not be a bad idea

Periodically, proposals to change Ohio law requiring that vehicle owners display license plates on the front and rear of their cars and trucks come up. The state House of Representatives appears poised to go down that road again later this year.

Proponents insist changing the law to allow plates only on the rear of vehicles would save owners a few dollars, while the state itself could cut spending by about $1 million a year.

Opponents say savings for motorists would be minimal and that the dual plates serve an important purpose.

Law enforcement agencies seem united as advocates for the two-plate system. Officers say it allows them to identify motorists guilty of wrongdoing more easily.

And, they add, witnesses to crimes are more likely to get plate numbers if they have two opportunities instead of just one.

Many states, including neighboring West Virginia and Pennsylvania, require only one plate per vehicle.

Yet legislators inclined to listen to law enforcement agencies are right. If the two-plate requirement is useful in solving crimes – and, quite possibly, getting dangerous drivers off Buckeye State highways quicker – it may be a good idea to retain it.