Sales of special coal license plates reach 50,000

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Steve Beshear has paid homage to the coal industry by marking a milestone in sales of special license plates.

Some 50,000 of the black "Friends Of Coal" license plates have been sold in the past two and a half years. That's more than any other specialty plates in Kentucky except for collegiate plates honoring the state's universities.

Beshear has been 1 of the coal industry's biggest cheerleaders, criticizing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for not approving new permits for mines in Kentucky.

Kentucky Coal Association President Bill Bissett praised Beshear for standing up against the EPA on behalf of the mining industry.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.