Kansas City Chiefs fans living in Kansas may soon be able to support their team through their license plate – if state lawmakers act.
Kansas lawmakers hope to add a new specialty license plate in support of the Chiefs alongside 54 other current specialty plates. The bill enjoys bipartisan support.
Sen. Kellie Warren, a Leawood Republican who sponsored the bill, noted Kansas doesn’t have its own NFL team. The Super Bowl-bound Chiefs are based in Missouri – though that’s been a source of confusion in the past.
That’s why it’s so important, she said, to give Kansans a chance to celebrate their regional team who they “love and cheer for.”
“Chiefs Kingdom crosses state boundaries, Chiefs fans can be found anywhere in the country,” she said. “We have a lot of them here in Kansas who want to show support for the teams they spend their Sundays cheering for.”
Sen. Ethan Corson, a Fairway Democrat, said the Chiefs represent a region that belongs to both Kansas and Missouri equally. He predicted the license plate design would not receive pushback for representing a team based in Missouri because of its widespread support through both states.
“For the vast majority of Kansans, the Chiefs are really Kansas’s team,” he said. “Everybody who wants to root for the Chiefs should root for the Chiefs.”
Corson said sports are often a unifying factor, bringing together people who may disagree on other issues. He pointed to the Republican and Democratic sponsors of the bill.
Sen. Elaine Bowers, a Concordia Republican who also sponsored the bill, said Kansas is home to teams both states cheer on – such as Sporting Kansas City, which is located in Kansas City, Kansas – and emphasized many Kansans see the teams as a unifying factor between the states.
“Hopefully the Missouri people think the same way as Kansans do,” she said.
The legislation, SB 359, will be heard in the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday.
Lawmakers are also considering new license plates for the Sedgwick County Zoo, Delta Waterfowl, Armed Services Occupation Medal license plate and a First City of Kansas license plate.
Last year, Kansas residents lambasted a proposed standard state license plate that was seen by some as having colors too similar to the University of Missouri and for its resemblance to the New York state license plate.
Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly abandoned the original design, and instead allowed Kansans to choose between five license plate designs. The winner, which features a cutout of the statehouse atop a blue-yellow gradient, received over half of the 270,000 votes.