Ballston Spa woman upset over additional fees added onto toll bills | WNYT.com

Ballston Spa woman upset over additional fees added onto toll bills

Tessa Bentulan
Updated: December 24, 2021 07:44 PM
Created: December 24, 2021 07:03 PM

Fahren Capone's son took a road trip in August. He went through several states, including Delaware and New Jersey.

Capone is handling the bills for her son while he is in the Army.

She started getting the toll bills in September. She paid the toll fees on the initial bills, but she said there were other administration fees included on the bill. Capone did not pay those because the bill said she could dispute those. So she did.

A few weeks later, she got several notices in the mail that said she still owes the money.

One of them is from the Delaware Department of Transportation. On top of the $4 toll fee for going through the Newark Toll Plaza, there were several other payments Capone's son owed: $25 in administration fees, $10 to an ambulance fund, $15 for combating violent crimes.

"I don't know even know what they are. They don't explain it," Capone said.

On the bill, which is considered a "notice of toll violation," it says the Delaware Department of Transportation believes her son traveled through a Delaware toll lane without remitting the toll due. 

Capone wanted a better explanation. 13 Investigates reached out to Delaware DOT for her and explained her situation. 

They told us the violation fees are for failing to pay the toll as a result of passing through an E-ZPass only lane without a transponder. Capone said her family does not have an E-ZPass account.

13 Investigates asked her if her son passed through an E-ZPass only lane. 

"That I don't know, but E-ZPass lanes are so confusing," Capone said. "If he did it, it was probably an accident."

The violation fees are set by the Delaware General Assembly, but Capone thinks that's hefty.

"If you go through an E-ZPass and you get charged for going through an E-ZPass, if they want to charge you $5, $10 and say, 'look you went through the wrong lane' then fine. But $50? I think that's excessive."

Now that she knows what the extra charges are for, even though she doesn't agree with it, she will pay them.

However, it doesn't stop there. Capone also received notices from the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the Delaware River and Bay Authority.

It shows that Capone paid the tolls that were due for her son going through the Delaware Memorial Bridge, but she still owed administration fees. 

One is a $50 administration fee from the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. The other is a $25 administration fee from the Delaware River and Bay Authority.

Both the notices say they are for toll violations.

She called the E-ZPass customer service number listed on the back of both of those notices, but Capone said she could not get through to anybody.

13 Investigates called the number with her just to see what happened; she could not get through to anybody.

This is why Capone is frustrated: "I want to talk to somebody. What happened to human communication? I don't want to take out my credit card. I mean, I will if I have to, but I shouldn't have to. I want to speak out, and I want to know why these charges are what they are. You're not explaining what they are or why I'm getting charged this."

NewsChannel 13 did reach out to the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. We explained Capone's situation.

They asked for the notices she received, so they can give a clear answer as to why this happened. Given NewsChannel 13 responded to them on Christmas Eve, we are still waiting on a response.


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