IL Offers Amnesty for Toll Cheats; $53 Million at Stake


Tens of thousands of Illinois toll cheats will get a break Tuesday if they take advantage of a 60-day amnesty program that will waive up to half of their fines, reports the Chicago Tribune. But those who fail to settle their accounts by Oct. 21 will be subject to stiffer penalties, including Denver-booting, towing and impoundment of their vehicles, under legislation Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed into law Monday.

About 106,000 motorists are expected to qualify for the amnesty program. The vast majority of them owe between $100 and $500, a small enough figure that tollway officials are optimistic that the program will generate a strong collection rate, she said. The agency is owed as much as $53 million. A watchdog group said the program makes business sense. “From a purely cost-benefit analysis, it’s highly improbable that they would have collected the amount of money owed to them without some kind of amnesty program,” said Terry Pastika, director of the Elmhurst-based Citizen Advocacy Center, which has been critical of the agency’s violation enforcement program.


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