The powers-that-be argue that the new design will be easier to see and able to better reflect headlights at night. Maybe it's just me but I thought the current white colored license plates were pretty easy to see. Even with the best reflective technology in the plates manufacture, blue lettering on an orange background just doesn't seem like the best color option to me. (I could make a joke here about the team colors of the New York Knicks basketball team, but why add to their misery.)
My favorite New York license plate was the Statue of Liberty design. It was artful and memorable. When they changed it, I was disappointed, but I could still live with the new one -- it still had almost the same colors and it had a hint of the New York City skyline as well as an illustration of the beautiful natural landscape of upstate. The new design that is rolling out now is just "blah" and a step backward.
I know that changing the design of vehicular license plates is a way for state governements to collect much-needed revenue, but it seems like an unnecessary and annoying money-making tactic. Surely they can come up with better schemes to raise funds.
But if they're going to do it every decade or so, can't they at least come up with a better design?