Parkways Authority works to clear E-ZPass application backlog
HUNTINGTON — With less than a week until deadline, the West Virginia Parkways Authority announced it is still working through a backlog of applications for unlimited use E-ZPass transponders.
Officials are still processing approximately 4,000 applications for transponders, while 17,830 transponders are still waiting to be assigned to an account and mailed, according to a news release issued by the agency Friday.
Jan. 11 is the deadline to apply for the discounted E-ZPass plan, which is $24 for unlimited use of the West Virginia Turnpike and is good for three years. There is an additional $13 charge for the transponder.
Parkways Authority officials extended the deadline late last month because of technical difficulties on the website and a line of more than 100 people at the agency’s office on Piedmont Road in Charleston.
The quickest way to apply for a discounted E-ZPass transponder is by visiting www.wvturnpike.com. Applications may also be submitted by mail, fax or in person at the agency’s office. Drivers who want to mail the forms must have them postmarked by the Jan. 11 deadline.
“The Parkways Authority has experienced extreme demand for the new discount plan that has created a delay in mailing the transponders to customers,” according to the release. “Additional staff has been added, working day and night, to reduce the backlog of transponders to be mailed.”
Those who miss the extended deadline for the three-year deal will still be able to buy an annual $25 E-ZPass with unlimited toll use. After 2021, all drivers will pay $25 a year for the pass.
Tolls on the West Virginia Turnpike will double in price by Jan. 15, from $2 to $4 at three toll booths: Chelyan (Toll Plaza C) at milepost 83, Pax (Toll Plaza B) at milepost 56 and Ghent (Toll Plaza A) at milepost 30.
The toll increases were a part of Gov. Jim Justice’s “Roads to Prosperity” program in 2017. The money collected from doubling the tolls will fund more than $300 million in bonds, which will go to the West Virginia Department of Transportation to pay for road projects in 10 counties throughout Southern West Virginia.
This is the first toll increase since 2009, when they rose from $1.25 to the current rate of $2.