Howard County's state legislators overwhelmingly approved a bill yesterday that would authorize the use of speed cameras by county police, with a few amendments.

If adopted by the full General Assembly, the Howard law would allow the issuance of automated $75 tickets to anyone going more than 10 miles over the posted limit on county roads posted for 45 mph or less. A statewide speed-camera bill that would also cover work zones on interstate highways is under consideration this year, with backing from Gov. Martin O'Malley.

The Howard bill, sponsored by state Sen. James N. Robey and supported by county police, was amended to require a 90-day warning period once the law takes effect, and the law would expire after five years unless it is reauthorized by the General Assembly. Two delegates, Republicans Gail H. Bates and Warren E. Miller, were the only opponents among 11 Howard legislators.