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Briella TomassettiJul 11, 2017, 9:35 pmJul 12, 2017, 6:59 am

AAA: MTA is overcharging millions of drivers who use E-ZPass at the toll booth

More than 92 million out-of-town E-ZPasses are being charged the cash rate

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NEW YORK — The E-ZPass is a simple, convenient tool for drivers who don't want to make that extra stop at the toll plaza and drivers who have the pass get discounts at certain locations.

But according to AAA, the MTA is charging E-ZPasses issued through non-New York based agencies the full cash rate at bridge and tunnel toll plazas in New York City.

"From 2012 to 2016, more than 92 million out-of-town E-ZPasses were charged the cash rate,” AAA Spokesperson Robert Sinclair said.

If you're driving over the Throgs Neck, RFK, or Whitestone Bridges, or through the Battery or Midtown tunnels, you should be paying $5.76 with an E-ZPass. But with cash or an E-ZPass from a non-New York Agency, you have to chalk up $8.50.

On the Verrazano Bridge—which is now a cashless facility—it's even worse at $11.52 with an E-ZPass, and 17 dollars without one or with an E-ZPass from an out of state agency.

"What is the use of getting that E-ZPass at all if they're not going to get the discount?" Sinclair said

AAA says that the MTA isn't the only culprit. In fact, eight other state toll agencies are engaging in the same kinds of unfair toll practices, including agencies in New Jersey, New Hampshire, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Maine, Illinois, Maryland, and Massachusetts.

Ultimately, Sinclair says this could have a big impact on tourism, especially during the summer season.

"It might serve as a deterrent, something that would discourage someone from out of state from visiting that state because they'll have to pay more when they go through those tolls," he said,

We're told AAA Northeast President and CEO, Mark Shaw, wrote a letter to U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao outlining those unfair practices and is waiting for a response.

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