Traffic amnesty bill gets support in the statehouse

It would allow people who have unpaid traffic fines a chance to see a reduction in that amount, or establish a payment plan.

Posted: Feb. 15, 2019 2:03 PM
Updated: Feb. 16, 2019 2:33 PM

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WLFI) - A bill that establishes a temporary traffic amnesty program is seeing success at the Indiana Statehouse. It would allow people who have unpaid traffic fines a chance to see a reduction in that amount, or establish a payment plan.

According to Representative Sharon Negele, there about 380,000 Hoosiers have a suspended license due to their inability to pay fines right now. 

Representative Negele is a co-author of Representative Robin Shakleford's bill. She said she was motivated to support it because of how she saw this problem impacted the city of Attica while she was a Clerk Treasurer.

"The same people who kept getting caught drving while suspended and the fines and fees were just building up and it was reaching a point for each of these individuals," she said.

A point where they couldn't be productive members of society because of the weight of their fines. She said she jumped at the opportunity to support this bill when Representative Shakleford first proposed it last year. It died in the statehouse then, but after some fine tuning, it is receiving much more support.

It was voted on on the House floor on Februrary 12th. It received 87 yeas and 1 nay, from Representative Heath VanNatter from District 38.

Representative Negele said she wants to help Hoosiers who are affected by this get back on their feet.

"The state shouldn't be in the business of handouts," she said. "The state should be in the business of lifting people up and allowing them an avenue to be successful citizens."

The bill heads to the State Senate next.

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