Councilman Holden institutes new 311 page to report obscured license plates

Councilman Robert Holden
File photo by William Alatriste/NYC.gov

Councilman Robert Holden successfully helped initiate a dedicated 311 request function for city residents to report obscured license plates. 

After Holden penned a letter to New York City Chief Technology Officer Matthew Fraiser, urging the city to take action against vehicle owners purposefully covering their license plates, the city agency made 311 request page available to the public as early as yesterday, according to Holden’s office. 

“We must prioritize tackling the persistent problem of obscured or tampered license plates,” said Holden. “Implementing a streamlined 311 reporting function empowers New Yorkers to swiftly alert law enforcement of such violations through a few simple taps on their smartphones. This responsive approach exemplifies the government’s commitment to addressing the concerns of its citizens.”

Holden tackled this issue before when he introduced a bill in 2021 to prohibit the sale or products that obscure or distort images of license plates. The law was enacted in January 2022 and saw attention from Mayor Eric Adams, who announced the city’s initiative to crack down on ghost vehicles and illicit license plates in August 2022. 

The legislation also led to the city’s partnership with the popular online retailer, Amazon, which agreed to restricting the sale of smokescreen and tinted license plate covers for customers under New York State addresses. 

Holden encourages residents to utilize this new request feature on the 311 site by visiting portal.311.nyc.gov. His office covers neighborhoods in Glendale, Maspeth, Middle Village, Ridgewood, Woodhaven, and Woodside.