Drivers who owe tolls for crossing the eastbound Tacoma Narrows bridge can’t renew their vehicle registrations until they pay up.
The state Department of Transportation said Tuesday that 8,000 people are tardy with tolls for the Narrows bridge and state Route 520. About 1,500 involve the Narrows bridge; 250 drivers didn’t pay tolls on both the Narrows bridge and state Route 520, and the remaining 6,250 have outstanding fines from driving state Route 520.
DOT has started turning their names over to the Department of Licensing, which will bar them from renewing their vehicle registration until all fees and penalties are paid.
“Most drivers pay their tolls on time, but there are consequences for those who don’t,” said Craig Stone, the state Toll Division director.
Tardy owners of vehicles with registrations that expire in December will first be the first to receive renewal notices from the Licensing Department with holds. Their tabs cannot be renewed until the tolls are taken care of.
Transportation Department officials said placing holds on vehicle registrations is a last-ditch effort to collect fines. A toll bill is mailed within 14 days of a driver crossing the bridge without paying the toll. If the driver doesn’t pay up within 15 days, a second bill is issued with a $5 reprocessing fee. Civil penalty notices typically are sent with a $40 penalty if the bill is not paid within 80 days.
If the Transportation Department does not hear from the vehicle owner within 20 days, officials ask the Licensing Department to place a registration hold on the violator.
Toll users can contact the Good To Go! Customer service center at 866-936-8246 to see whether they have unpaid tolls or to settle a bill.
Tolling on the bridges goes toward the debt on bonds used to finance construction of the new bridge.