By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) – Cash customers already pay a premium to ride the Pennsylvania Turnpike and that extra charge could grow if the turnpike switches to an all-electronic toll system, which is at least five years off.

A year-long study has concluded that switching to an all-electronic toll system is feasible and the Pennsylvania Turnpike has announced plans to explore the idea further. But, a system would have to be developed to still collect tolls from cash customers.

And turnpike spokesman Carl DeFebo says the study concluded the costs could mean even higher tolls for cash-payers. “Part of that study outlined one possible scenario – what we could consider to be probably the worst case scenario – for the differential between E-ZPass and non E-ZPass.”

And DeFebo says that worst-case scenario could push the current 17-percent differential to 76-percent. But, DeFebo says that’s a projection based on current conditions if no steps were taken to mitigate the extra costs.

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