license plates

Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles

A new image will adorn Indiana’s standard license plate -- and it’s an icon of the state’s rural past.

The Bureau of Motor Vehicles unveiled three potential designs for the new plate in August: one featured the state outline with a torch surrounded by stars inside it; the second had a yellow banner on the bottom reading “Crossroads of America.”

The third, the most colorful, featured verdant scenery with a red covered bridge under the center of the plate.

Steve Baker /

Hoosiers will once again be able to get a personalized license plate from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, beginning Friday. The program resumes nearly three years after a lawsuit led the BMV to shut it down.

A Greenfield police officer filed a lawsuit in 2013 after the BMV denied his personalized plate reading “O1NK” – or “oink.” The agency shut the entire program down during the ensuing legal battle.  The Indiana Supreme Court in November resolved the case, ruling in favor of the BMV.  Now five months later, Commissioner Kent Abernathy says the program will resume.

Chris Morisse Vizza / WBAA News

The City of West Lafayette expects to roll out a new digital parking enforcement system in January, about eight months later than originally planned.

The project hit a roadblock earlier this year when the company that had been hired to provide the electronic monitoring system filed to liquidate its assets in federal bankruptcy court.  

City leaders say there was no way to predict the company’s financial problems, and the bankruptcy case was compounded by the fact that the corporation was originally formed in Canada.

The Indiana Supreme Court of has ruled the state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles is allowed to regulate what people print on their personalized license plates.

A previous decision by a lower court had ruled the BMV violated free speech rights and due process when it prohibited the issuance of certain license plates such as one belonging to a police officer that said “OINK.”  

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The Indiana Supreme Court will consider the future of Indiana’s personalized license plates after the state and the ACLU each had their say over a lawsuit challenging the program.

Greenfield Police Officer Rodney Vawter, with approval from the Fraternal Order of Police, had a license plate that read “0INK.” 

The Bureau of Motor Vehicles revoked it, calling it inappropriate.  The ACLU of Indiana, on behalf of Vawter, sued the BMV, saying its policy violates free speech rights. 

Scott /

Hoosier license plates will no longer be produced by Department of Correction inmates.

After a months-long bidding process, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles signed a contract with Intellectual Technology Incorporated for the California-based company to produce the state’s license plates.

That five-year contract began after the state’s contract with 3M, which had previously produced the plates, ended in December.

3M, under its contract, had hired PEN Products, the Department of Correction’s manufacturing program, to make the plates.