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Indiana Senate passes bill authorizing speed cameras in highway work sites

Republican Senator Jon Ford speaks on the Senate floor. Ford is a White man, bald, wearing a suit.
Brandon Smith
IPB News
Sen. Jon Ford (R-Terre Haute) has worked for years to create a program for speed cameras in highway construction zones.

Cameras to catch speeding motorists in highway construction sites are close to reality in Indiana after a Senate vote Monday.

HB 1015 would allow cameras in four work zones statewide. Drivers going at least 11 miles per hour over the limit would be ticketed, with the first ticket resulting in just a warning. The second ticket would be $75 and each one after that $150.

But some lawmakers don’t like that use of technology. Sen. Aaron Freeman (R-Indianapolis) said the answer to slowing down motorists in work zones is more police.

“Let’s park them in these construction zones and let’s have them patrol the highways of Indiana more than they’re doing,” Freeman said.

READ MORE: Highway work zone speed cameras closer than ever to reality in Indiana

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Indiana's legislation is modeled after Pennsylvania's program. In its first year, speed in construction zones that used the cameras was down five to eight miles per hour.

Sen. Blake Doriot (R-Goshen) said those speaking against the bill have conjured boogeymen to oppose it.

“This is about saving lives," Doriot said. "It’s not about Big Brother watching over you.”

The bill now goes back to the House for further consideration. Its author, Rep. Jim Pressel (R-Rolling Prairie), said he hopes to have a quick vote to send it to the governor.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.