Toll Roads

Brickbat: Highway Robbery

|

Badass of the Week

Dan Usselmann's problems began when he had his debit card stolen. The card was linked to the tollway transponders on two of his family's vehicles, so he called the Illinois Tollway to change the transponders to his new debit card. But officials only updated one of the transponders. The other vehicle tallied up $210 in unpaid tolls before he discoverd the error. Even worse, the Tollway charged him more than $27,000 in late fees and fines for not paying those tolls. After a local TV station started asking about that markup the Tollway slashed the total amount Usselmann owed to $1,100.

NEXT: Booting Cops Makes Mexican Town Safer

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Illinois needs that money more than he does.

  2. Corprashens are greedy!

  3. WHY DO WE HAVE TO KEEP BRINGING UP WHAT A CRAPHOLE ILLINOIS IS?!

    As a resident, I am perfectly aware of our suckitude.

    1. It’s so that other people don’t move there.

      -jcr

    2. We in California salute you

    3. Your state is bad and you should feel bad.

      I like hearing these stories. Reminds me that, no matter how bad my state gets it could be worse.

    4. We just rented a room over the state line in WI just for the purposes of car licensing and registration. After three attempts to do this legally and IL’s escalating demands for more and more documentation, we gave up.

    5. Ohio’s great, move over a few states. The weather here is perpetually shitty, and stay the hell out of the big cities, but overall it’s a good place to live.

  4. Even worse, the Tollway charged him more than $27,000 in late fees and fines for not paying those tolls.

    Uh, the whole point of a debit card is that the scratch is pulled directly out of your account. Why were there late fees at all? I smell a rat.

    In any case, imagine if all roads were privatized and therefore toll roads. THIS KIND OF THING WOULD BE RAMPANT. Because corporations are just as corrupt and unaccountable as Illinois, if not more.

    1. It was likely ran as a credit not debit transaction, not that it matters much. It also appears the Tollway bills on a post basis. No payment of the account balance by the due date = late fee.

    2. The point is they were still charging all the trips one car made to a debit card that no longer existed.

  5. Reason #87 I don’t have EasyPass.

    1. You mean you don’t like the idea of having your travel patterns recorded on a database to be analyzed by government goons who think everyone is a terrorist until they prove otherwise?

      You’re just a paranoid nutjob is what you are.

      1. I don’t like the idea of paying more and having to stop and pay someone for the privilege. If someone is interested in my mundane public comings and goings, it’s not a huge deal to me.

        1. If someone is interested in my mundane public comings and goings, it’s not a huge deal to me.

          Until, of course, the burglary ring aspect kicks in.

          1. Not sure if serious.

            1. Not entirely. Everyone knows burglary rings only monitor Facebook.

              1. Whew.

      2. Well, they’re probably taking a picture of your license plate even if you pay cash.

        1. Yep. And at least on IL Tollway, they’re also charging you more.

  6. the Tollway has wiped out the $27,000 bill and now just wants about $1,100 to back the collection agency off and settle the score.

    Easily done. Get it from the officials who only updated one of the transponders.

    1. Accountability, how quaint.

  7. I almost had to move to Orlando. Never lived a city with toll roads before. Researched the cost of my commute on the internet.

    Wow.

    Didn’t go.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.