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.
ITI will no longer do so beginning in May.
The BMV says the move away from using inmates will save the state $15 million over its contract.
But House Minority Leader Scott Pelath – whose local state prison was responsible for plate production – says the program was about more than dollars and cents.
“Offenders have to stay busy. And the busier they stay, the safer the environment is for correctional officers,” Pelath says.
Pelath says he’s also skeptical that no longer using inmates – who were only paid about a dollar an hour – will save the state money.