State senator 'shocked' by Loop 49 toll violators

AUSTIN, TX (KLTV) - An East Texas state senator is 'shocked' by the data shown in a KLTV 7 investigation revealing the unpaid tolls on Loop 49.

Since the toll road started collecting from motorists in 2007, unpaid tolls have piled up. The 'top ten' toll violators have racked up more than $240,000 in tolls and fines.

State Senator Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) chairs the senate transportation committee and said changes are needed on toll collection.

"There is little debate that toll entities need additional enforcement tools," Nichols said. "Existing mechanisms are highly ineffective and do little to deter bad behavior.

"Poor toll enforcement is unfair to individuals who pay tolls as required. They are doing the right thing and there is little we do to encourage others to do so as well."

The next phase of Loop 49, which connects the road to Interstate 20 is expected to open in late March.

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