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Garden State Parkway Getting Tougher On Toll Cheats

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WOODBRIDGE, N.J. (CBS) - Next time you use those exact change lanes on the Garden State Parkway, you’d better be sure you pay the toll.  If you don’t, it’ll cost you plenty.

Starting 12:01 a.m. Monday, cameras will be put into use on some seven dozen tollbooth lanes where drivers drop coins into the basket.

“Between the cameras and the computers in the lanes, we’ll be able to know whether or not somebody has put in the exact change toll that’s required,” says Ronnie Hakim, executive director of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, which also runs the parkway.  “And if they don’t, they will get in the mail a notice from us for the toll together with a 50-dollar administrative fee.”

And forget the old “honk the horn and go” trick, pretending your coins missed the basket.  Officials say the cameras are good enough to see what actually happened.

The Garden State Parkway loses about $4 million a year to toll cheats who speed through those exact change lanes without paying.

Besides, this is part of a push to get drivers to use EZ Pass, avoiding the cash lanes altogether.

Toll cheaters can expect a $50 fine within 30 days of the offense. For more information, visit http://www.state.nj.us/turnpike/documents/ADVISORY_video_enforcement_advisory.pdf.

Reported by David Madden, KYW Newsradio; Jericka Duncan, CBS 3