GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
SESSION LAW 2010-133
HOUSE BILL 1685
AN ACT to make various changes to the STATUTES governing collection and enforcement of tolls by THE North Carolina Turnpike AUTHORITY.
The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:
SECTION 1. G.S. 136‑82.2 is repealed.
SECTION 2. G.S. 136‑89.211 reads as rewritten:
"§ 136‑89.211. Tolls for use of Turnpike project.
In exercising its authority under G.S. 136‑89.183 to set tolls for the use of a Turnpike project, the Authority may not do any of the following:
(1) Set open road tolls that vary for the same class of
motor vehicle depending on the method by which the Authority identifies a motor
vehicle that drives on the Turnpike project. This does not preclude the
Authority from allowing a discount
of up to thirty‑five percent (35%)
of the amount of a toll for a motor vehicle equipped with an electronic
toll collection transponder.transponder or a motor vehicle that has
prepaid its toll.
(2) Exempt a motor vehicle that is not a law enforcement vehicle, an emergency fire or rescue vehicle, or an emergency medical services vehicle from the requirement of paying a toll for the use of a Turnpike project."
SECTION 3. G.S. 136‑89.214(a) reads as rewritten:
"(a) Bill. – If a motor vehicle travels on a
Turnpike project that uses an open road tolling system and a toll for traveling
on the project is not paid
within 15 days after the travel occurs, prior
to travel or at the time of travel, the Authority must send a bill by first‑class
mail to the registered owner of the motor vehicle for the amount of the unpaid
toll. The Authority must send the bill within 90 days after the travel occurs.
If a bill is not sent within the required time, the Authority waives collection
of the toll. The Authority must establish a billing period for unpaid open road
tolls that is no shorter than 15 days. A bill for a billing period must include
all unpaid tolls incurred by the same person during the billing period."
SECTION 4. G.S. 136‑89.215 reads as rewritten:
"§ 136‑89.215. Required action upon receiving bill for open road toll and processing fee for unpaid toll.
(a) Action Required. – A person who receives a bill from
the Authority for an unpaid open road toll must take one of the following
actions within 30 days
after receiving the bill:of the date of the
(1) Pay the bill.
(2) Send a written request to the Authority for a review of the toll.
(b) Fee. – If a person does not take one of the
actions required under subsection (a) of this section within the required time,
the Authority may add a processing fee to the amount the person owes. The
processing fee may not exceed six dollars ($6.00). A person may not be charged
more than forty‑eight dollars ($48.00) in processing fees in a
year. 12‑month period.
The Authority must set the processing fee at an amount that does not exceed the costs of identifying the owner of a motor vehicle that is subject to an unpaid toll and billing the owner for the unpaid toll. The fee is a receipt of the Authority and must be applied to these costs."
SECTION 5. G.S. 136‑89.216 reads as rewritten:
"§ 136‑89.216. Civil penalty for failure to pay open road toll.
(a) Penalty. – A person who receives
or more bills for unpaid open road tolls during the first or second six‑month
period in a year and who has not paid the amount due on those bills within
30 days after the end of the six‑month period is subject to a
civil penalty of twenty‑five dollars ($25.00). The period from January
1 through June 30 of a year is the first six‑month period in a year, and
the period from July 1 through December 31 is the second six‑month period
in a year. Only one penalty may be assessed for in a six‑month
(b) Payment. – The Authority must send a notice by
first‑class mail to a person who is assessed a civil penalty under this
section. A person who is assessed a civil penalty must pay the unpaid toll for
which the civil penalty was imposed, the amount of any processing fee due, and
the civil penalty within 30 days
after receiving the notice.of the
date of the notice.
(c) Penalty Proceeds. – A civil penalty imposed under
this section is payable to the
Authority or, if collected when a vehicle
registration is renewed, to the Division of Motor Vehicles of the Department of
Transportation. Authority. The clear proceeds of a civil penalty
imposed under this section must be credited to the Civil Penalty and Forfeiture
Fund established in G.S. 115C‑457.1. The guidelines used by the
Office of State Budget and Management to determine an agency's actual costs of
collecting a civil penalty and the clear proceeds of the civil penalty apply to
the determination of the clear proceeds of a civil penalty imposed under this
SECTION 6. G.S. 136‑89.217 reads as rewritten:
"§ 136‑89.217. Vehicle registration renewal blocked for unpaid open road toll.
(a) Registration Block. – Failure of a person to pay an open road toll billed to the person under G.S. 136‑89.214, any processing fee added under G.S. 136‑89.215, and any civil penalty imposed under G.S. 136‑89.216 is grounds under G.S. 20‑54 to withhold the registration renewal of a motor vehicle registered in that person's name. The Authority must notify the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles of a person who owes a toll, a processing fee, or a civil penalty. When notified, the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles must withhold the registration renewal of any motor vehicle registered in that person's name.
(b) Collection by DMV. – A person whose
motor vehicle registration renewal is blocked under this section may pay to the
Division of Motor Vehicles of the Department of Transportation the amount owed
for unpaid tolls, processing fees, and civil penalties due under this Part when
renewing the vehicle registration. The Division must remit to the Authority the
amount of tolls, fees, and civil penalties collected. The Division's costs of
collecting tolls, fees, and civil penalties are considered a necessary expense
of the operation of the Authority, and the Authority must reimburse the
Division for these costs."
SECTION 7. G.S. 136‑89.218 reads as rewritten:
"§ 136‑89.218. Procedures for contesting liability for unpaid open road toll.
(a) Informal Review. – A person who receives a bill
for an unpaid open road toll and who disputes liability for the toll may
contest the toll by sending to the Authority a request for review of the toll.
The person may include a sworn affidavit described in G.S. 136‑89.212
that establishes that someone else had the care, custody, and control of the
motor vehicle subject to the toll when the toll was incurred. The person must
send the request for review to the Authority within 30 days
the bill for the toll. of the date of the bill sent by the Authority.
A person who does not send a request for review to the Authority within this
time limit waives the right to a review. If a person sends a timely request for
review to the Authority, the Authority may not collect the disputed toll and
any processing fee added to the bill for the toll until the conclusion of the
review process in this section.
(b) Administrative Hearing. – If the Authority conducts an informal review under subsection (a) of this section and determines that the person who requested the review is liable for the toll, the Authority must send the person a notice informing the person of the Authority's determination. The person may contest this determination by filing a petition for a contested case hearing at the Office of Administrative Hearings in accordance with Article 3 of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes.
(c) Judicial Review. – Article 4 of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes governs judicial review of a final decision made in a contested case authorized under subsection (b) of this section."
SECTION 8. This act becomes effective December 1, 2010.
In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 9th day of July, 2010.
s/ Walter H. Dalton
President of the Senate
s/ Joe Hackney
Speaker of the House of Representatives
s/ Beverly E. Perdue
Approved 5:15 p.m. this 21st day of July, 2010