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Bill to tackle unpaid Turnpike tolls passes Senate

Bill to tackle unpaid Turnpike tolls passes Senate

Senate Bill 473 which would go after drivers with unpaid tolls on the Pennsylvania Turnpike unanimously passed the state Senate. 

Senator Lisa M. Boscola (D-18) sponsored the bill. SB 473 proposes the garnishment of Pennsylvania Lottery winnings and state income tax returns from people with unpaid tolls. 

"Law-abiding Pennsylvanians have consistently paid their fair share," said Senator Boscola. "However, repeated toll offenders are escaping accountability. Without more effective measures, we risk the erosion of the entire system as more individuals seek to evade payment."

Initially introduced in 2022, SB473 was prompted by a report from the Pennsylvania Turnpike, revealing a concerning projected loss of $155 million in unpaid tolls from April 2021 to March 2022—a 49% increase from the prior year's $105 million. The Turnpike's 2023 report indicates a further rise in unpaid tolls, reaching $170 million, up by an additional $15 million from the previous year.

Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission spokesperson Carl DeFebo told CBS 21 News the Commission has to recoup that money elsewhere, and it's currently being passed to Turnpike drivers who do pay in the form of toll increases and additional fees. 

"It's going to affect the people who are paying. One of the reasons our tolls keep going up is because the people who are paying have to pay for the people who aren’t," said Pennsylvania Senator Greg Rothman.

With the Senate's approval, SB 473 heads to the House Transportation Committee for further consideration.


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