- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A legislative hearing was called to discuss Texas’ troubled toll collection system that has had more than 3.5 million toll charges that contractors have failed to process in a timely manner.

The Austin American-Statesman (https://atxne.ws/1ArBoDF ) reports that Texas Department of Transportation officials on Wednesday told legislators that the backlog of transactions and the incorrect billing of about 30,000 motorists, have led its single call center being overwhelmed with calls from upset motorists.

Texas Department of Transportation Deputy Executive John Barton apologized to customers during the hearing. He told the senators that about 800,000 bills associated with late or incorrect charges would be waived. Some of the toll charges took up to two years for outside contractors to process. Many of those charges stemmed from drivers who have the electronic toll tag on their windshield being incorrectly billed as if they did not have the tag.

When questioned about why so many charges were delayed, the Transportation department’s spokeswoman Veronica Beyer said “We’re not sure how they became stalled with the old system.”

3M and URS, who were the original contractors for the system, were replaced with Xerox last July. Xerox faced its own problem meeting deadlines and contract standards, which caused the company to be fined $177,000 by the state.

Transportation officials said that more call centers have been added in Houston and San Antonio to help answer motorist questions.

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Information from: Austin American-Statesman, https://www.statesman.com


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