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Pa. Turnpike Officials Say All-Electronic Toll Collection is Possible By 2017

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(File photo)

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(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Pennsylvania Turnpike officials say they are moving ahead with their goal of converting the highway to all-electronic toll collections within five years.  But that’s only a goal at this point.

Pennsylvania Turnpike officials have already commissioned a study that showed all-electronic tolling is feasible (see related story), and interim CEO Craig Shuey today told a joint hearing of the state House and Senate Transportation Committees that the turnpike commission will pursue the changeover.

“This will be the most significant change in how the turnpike has operated since it opened in 1940,” he said.

But Pennsylvania Turnpike spokesman Carl DeFebo cautions that it’s a complicated, five-year process that has many potential pitfalls.

“However, to say that it’s definitely going to happen, I think, is probably premature given all the hurdles that have to be overcome,” he tells KYW Newsradio.

DeFebo says that in an all-electric tolling system, images of the license plates of cash-paying drivers would be used to generate a bill that would be sent in the mail (another related story).

Shuey, the CEO, also notes all-electronic tolling could help usher in a system of different toll rates based on the time of day.

 

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