SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. (FOX 35 ORLANDO) - There’s more toll trouble for Florida, with more than $100 million in unpaid tolls in the past 18 months.
With SunPass not sending out bills for months, and then suddenly people getting much higher bills than expected, the Florida Turnpike now says it lost out on millions of dollars.
The SunPass saga continues. After a six-month delay in billing customers last year, the Turnpike Enterprise dropped a bomb on state lawmakers this week.
“For that period of time, it’s about $120 million dollars,” a turnpike representative told lawmakers at the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee meeting.
“There’s $120 million out there? In accounts receivable greater than 90 days?” one lawmaker asked.
Lawmakers were stunned to hear the turnpike is still waiting to collect $120 million in tolls from drivers.
“When you go six months without billing people, you’ve got to expect you’re going to lose some money,” said Rep. Dianne Hart, D-Tampa. But Rep. Hart didn’t expect it to be that much. “I had no idea there was $120 million outstanding on the tolls.”
The Turnpike sent a statement to FOX 35 that says in part, it’s “making every effort to collect these outstanding balances and will send these accounts to a collection agency.” If that doesn’t work, they say you won’t be able to get a license tag without paying your bill. Officials hope to recoup at least 50 percent of the $120 million loss.
“They will eventually recoup it all. It’s just a matter of how long.”
Lawmakers are pointing fingers at both the contractor, Conduent, and the turnpike for the SunPass situation.
“They both share some of the blame. You have to because if I’m the leader and I hired you, I have to know what you’re doing,” said Rep. Hart.
The Turnpike says the contractor is not required to make up the difference when people still owe. The turnpike has already announced it’s not renewing its SunPass contract with Conduent. The current contract ends in 2022.