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License Plates for Cancer Research

State universities can make $500,000 a year through Washington’s vanity license plates. Soon, some of that money could benefit cancer research in Seattle.

Justin Marquart, Deputy Director of Development at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, said he got the idea while sitting in traffic.

“You have an opportunity to see lot of different license plates go by, the WSU plates and the UW plates, and I was thinking ‘Why don’t we have a Fred Hutch plate?’ ”

Researchers at Fred Hutch recently completed their latest immunotherapy trials on terminal cancer patients. They had a 90% remission rate. Marquart said money raised through license plates would go directly to funding this type of research.

First, they need to get 3,500 signatures on a petition to send their request to Olympia. It then has to get the approval of the state legislature. If all goes well, Marquart said the plates could be available by the end of next year.

“To show that solidarity, that you’re supportive, I think would be special. I think it would be pretty awesome to go down the freeway and see those kind of plates,” said Marquart.

It would cost a car owner an extra $28 to get the specialty plate, which would all to go Fred Hutch. The research center would get another infusion of cash with each car tab renewal.

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