(DALLAS) — Amber Young of Dallas is first on the North Texas Tollway Authority’s list of the top 100 highest unpaid toll invoices, which claims she owes the agency $179,596.43 for 8,366 instances.
The top 100 toll violators on the list released Wednesday combined for more than 430,000 missed tolls and more than $9 million in unpaid tolls and fees.
According to NTTA’s website, “The list of names…was publicized as part of an ongoing toll collection effort and as a service to those customers who owe the authority for their use of toll roads.”
Michael Rey, media relations manager for NTTA, said publishing the names will change the way the agency will pursue people with outstanding tolls.
“If you have forgotten about it, we haven’t,” said Rey. “Here is your opportunity to check and see if your name is on the list.”
Tollway authority officials added that if people aren’t able to pay right away, they will work with them. If customers aren’t willing to cooperate or ignore warnings, NTTA plans to file lawsuits.
Officials hope that the threat of lawsuits will decrease the amount of unpaid tolls.
“Filing civil lawsuits will be a broader reach and will involve more people being contacted by the NTTA,” said Rey.
Officials also are hoping to set up a system that would prevent repeat offenders from using tolls.
“No one likes to pay a toll and we understand that,” Rey added. “Ninety-two percent of our customers pay and others who get the same benefit of traveling of the road should pay, as well. It is a fairness issue. The overwhelming sentiment that we’re hearing is that, ‘If I pay, everyone should.’”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Doug Criss, CNN
Nate Eaton, EastIdahoNews.com
Heather Long, CNN