Appeals court overturns Carmel traffic ordinance

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The Indiana State Court of Appeals has overturned a traffic ordinance in Carmel. Police officers will still write tickets but will use the state code instead.

The issue isn’t about what the speed limit should be, but rather who should get the money from the tickets.

The State of Indiana has a law against driving faster than 20 miles per hour in construction zones, and the City of Carmel copied that ordinance and wrote it into local code. But part of the problem is Carmel simply referenced the state code instead of rewriting similar language into local law. Carmel officials believe some of this confusion could have been avoided if Carmel’s law was written slightly differently, but nonetheless Mayor Jim Brainard disagrees with the court’s decision.

“We are reviewing it,” he said. “We are disappointed with the decision, and we are going to study it and appeal it. We believe it’s a bad decision.”

Questions still remain about whether the ruling means revenue previously collected by Carmel would now be given to the state. Brainard anticipates an answer soon and that Carmel will ultimately be able to give out its own tickets. He said the Indiana Association of Cities and Towns has been giving this issue considerable attention.

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