SunPass customer starts petition to waive tolls citing botched upgrade

Mike DiMauro drives food delivery trucks for a living, and spends much of his time traveling Florida’s toll roads.

He can’t afford to pay for the tolls he accrues for his employer, and he doesn’t think other SunPass customers should for theirs either.

On July 6, the Orlando resident started a petition asking SunPass to waive all tolls incurred by customers during the disruption of service to its customer service system.

RELATED: SunPass now lets you reload at these convenience stores

He also wants Conduent State & Local Solutions, which has a $287 million contract with the state to run customer service technology for Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise, to pay for them.

“Why should we, the SunPass customers, pay for the tolls during their outage?,” he said. “It’s SunPass and Conduent’s fault, not ours. Governor Rick Scott and State Attorney Pam Bondi should go after Conduent and sue them for the toll money during the outage, not getting it collected from the customers.”

The SunPass Centralized Customer Service System went offline for what was supposed to be a week’s worth of upgrades June 1. But work on the system dragged on for nearly a month, during which time SunPass customers continued to accumulate toll charges, but could not track them.

DiMauro could not access his SunPass account during the time the system was down, and was unable to submit his toll transactions — as his employer requires — during the time he was on the clock.

He has not been reimbursed for those expenses, and neither has a Palm Beach Gardens resident who also is required to submit his toll receipts to his employer.

“When it was time to do my receipts, I couldn’t access the SunPass receipts in order to submit them,” said the resident, who asked that his name be withheld. “I basically had to pay the cost of traveling on the turnpike because I couldn’t wait for SunPass to eventually figure out how to show me my receipt.”

He said he’s out about $60 so far in toll receipts.

The Florida Department of Transportation began processing toll transactions July 3, and planned to post 8 million per day until all accounts were up to date.

But the state hasn’t hit those numbers, and a backlog of unprocessed transactions remains. As of Thursday, 59 million transactions have been posted, the FDOT said. Millions more remain.

On Monday, the state announced it would withhold payments to Conduent until the upgrade was complete.

DiMauro began his petition, in part, because he expects to be hit with a huge bill once all his transactions are posted.

“I was getting fed up with what was going on,” he said.

His petition, which he has shared on social media, garnered 40 signatures initially. As of Friday morning, those numbers rose to 2,221, and DiMauro hopes they go higher. His original goal was 2,500 signatures.

“I hope to get the attention of the state government and have action be done so that it would help the drivers out there,” he said.

To see the petition, visit here.

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