E-ZPass is not so easy in New Jersey (Opinion)
It's in the name, E-Z. The whole concept of E-ZPass is that for commuters who are regularly using New Jersey toll roads, the trip will be faster, and paying the tolls will be convenient and, well, easy.
I resisted getting the gadget and seamless toll paying for several years. Once I decided it was time to make the toll paying easier, I never looked back.
Automatic replenishment of the account and no stopping at the booth.
All was fine until yesterday when I received a $50 violation in the mail. There was a picture of my car and three easy ways to pay the fine.
The problem is that I shouldn't pay a fine for my active account with automatic refills on the toll money. I went to the website and it turns out I have two violations from last week and according to E-ZPass, I owe them $104!
Beyond the fact that the mistake is clearly on them for not replenishing my account, I called to dispute and was on hold for 40 minutes. It would have been 40 minutes well spent except instead of getting a customer service rep, they hung up!
So frustrating to deal with a bureaucracy that defaults to putting the burden on you.
In America, you are innocent until they prove you are guilty. With E-ZPass, it seems you're guilty and fined until you prove you are innocent. Something is wrong with that picture.
And who sets the $50 amount anyway? I'd like to see some oversight from the state legislature to make sure people are not being charged and paying money for violations that are the company's mistake and not the driver's.
Is it time for a deep dive into the E-ZPass process?
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.