Woman owes Texas nearly $180,000 in unpaid tolls

Texas highway toll lane 
By: Sarah Weiss

If nothing can happen by not paying for tolls on bridges and tunnels, a Texas woman decided that she won’t pay.

If you've ever driven around Dallas, chances are you've paid the North Texas Toll Authority, an agency that builds roads, tunnels and bridges with fees collected from drivers.

But since the NTTA has no police powers, it has had trouble collecting tolls that went unpaid and today, it turned to naming and shaming 25,000 of its worst offenders. The list includes twenty drivers who owe more than $100,000 in unpaid tolls and penalties with the list headed by a woman from Dallas, whose bill is $179,596.43. That is one large toll bill.

To join the shame list of the NTTA, one needs at least 100 outstanding unpaid toll violations, no answer to various bills and notices, after six months and at least $2,575 in late fees. The top offender, identified by the NTTA as Amber Young of Dallas, who allegedly sped along the toll booths without paying 8,366 times, with its total, including the level of fines were not reveal NTTA.

The NTTA said last year about 3 percent of users are evading about $13 million in tolls, and that a previous attempt to publish the names of the worst offenders was very successful in collecting unpaid tolls over any other tactic.

The NTTA was created by Texas legislators to pay for roads without raising taxes by charging the people who actually use them, a system that is growing in many congested cities across the country. If the NTTA trick works well, we hope other toll agencies will consider their own version of Texas justice.