NEW YORK (PIX11) — Bronx Assemblyman Kenny Burgos is on a mission to reduce the late fees charged for unpaid bridge and tunnel tolls in New York.
“I’ve heard from people as far as Buffalo, as far south of Staten Island, just really exemplifying how bad of an issue this is,” Burgos said. “I’ve literally heard of a six-figure toll bill that someone has owed.”
In recent years, major bridges and tunnels around New York City replaced toll booths with cashless tolling. Drivers without an E-Z Pass receive a bill for their tolls in the mail.
“Most people just don’t use snail mail nowadays,” Burgos believes.
For tunnels and bridges run by the MTA, if a bill goes unpaid for more than 60 days, a fee gets added of $50 to $100 per toll.
Burgos believes the time for change is now. His recent testimony about toll fees during a transportation hearing went viral on TikTok.
Burgos believes that social media momentum made an impact, and there will be enough support in Albany to pass the Toll Payer Protection Act. Previous versions of the legislation failed to pass, but Burgos hopes with a few modifications the bill will pass to cap most late fees at $25 for the majority of MTA, New York State Thruway and Port Authority tolls across New York state.
In a statement to PIX11 News, MTA spokesperson Aaron Donovan responded to Burgos’ legislation.
“The MTA has an obligation to collect tolls,” the MTA spokesperson said. “Drivers have an obligation to pay them. We strongly urge people using bridges and tunnels to get E-Z Pass and the award-winning TollsNY app to avoid unfortunate situations.”