§ 46.2-819.3. Use of toll facility without payment of toll; enforcement; penalty
A. The toll facility operator may impose and collect an administrative fee in addition to the unpaid toll so as to recover the expenses of collecting the unpaid toll, which administrative fee shall be reasonably related to the actual cost of collecting the unpaid toll and not exceed $100 per violation. Such fee shall not be levied upon the operator of the vehicle until the second unpaid toll has been documented. The owner or operator of the vehicle shall pay the unpaid tolls and any administrative fee detailed in an invoice or bill issued by a toll facility operator. If paid within 30 days of notification, the administrative fee shall not exceed $25.
B. If the matter proceeds to court, the owner or operator of the vehicle shall be liable for a civil penalty as follows: for a first offense, $50; for a second offense within one year from the first offense, $100; for a third offense within two years from the second offense, $250; and for a fourth and any subsequent offense within three years from the second offense, $500 plus, in each case, the unpaid toll, all accrued administrative fees imposed by the toll facility operator and applicable court costs if the vehicle operator is found, as evidenced by information obtained from the toll facility operator, to have used such a toll facility without payment of the required toll.
C. A written promise to pay an unpaid toll within a specified period of time executed by the driver of a motor vehicle, accompanied by a certificate sworn to or affirmed by an authorized agent of the toll facility that the unpaid toll was not paid within such specified period, shall be prima facie evidence of the facts contained therein.
D. The operator of a toll facility may send an invoice or bill to the driver of a motor vehicle using a toll facility without payment of the specified toll as part of an electronic or manual toll collection process prior to seeking remedies under this section. Any action under this section shall be brought in the general district court of the city or county in which the toll facility is located.
E. Upon a finding by a court of competent jurisdiction that the driver of a motor vehicle identified in the summons issued pursuant to subsection I was in violation of this section, the court shall impose a civil penalty upon the driver of a motor vehicle in accordance with the amounts specified in subsection B, together with applicable court costs, the operator's administrative fee, and the toll due. Penalties assessed as the result of action initiated by the Virginia Department of Transportation shall be remanded by the clerk of the court which adjudicated the action to the Virginia Department of Transportation's Toll Facilities Revolving Fund. Penalties assessed as the result of action initiated by an operator of a toll facility other than the Virginia Department of Transportation shall be remanded by the clerk of the court which adjudicated the action to the treasurer or director of finance of the county or city in which the violation occurred for payment to the toll facility operator.
F. Upon a finding by a court that a person has three or more unpaid tolls and such person fails to pay the required penalties, fees, and unpaid tolls, the court shall notify the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles, who shall refuse to issue or renew any vehicle registration certificate of any applicant or the license plate issued for any vehicle owned or co-owned by the offender. The Commissioner shall collect a $40 administrative fee from the owner or operator of the vehicle to defray the cost of processing and removing an order to deny registration or registration renewal.
G. For purposes of this section, "operator of a toll facility other than the Virginia Department of Transportation" means any agency, political subdivision, authority, or other entity that operates a toll facility.
H. Imposition of a civil penalty pursuant to this section shall not be deemed a conviction as an operator and shall not be made part of the driving record of the person upon whom such civil penalty is imposed nor shall it be used for insurance purposes in the provision of motor vehicle insurance coverage. The provisions of § 46.2-395 shall not be applicable to any civil penalty, fee, unpaid toll, fine or cost imposed or ordered paid under this section for a violation of this section.
I. A summons for a violation of this section may be executed pursuant to § 19.2-76.2. Toll facility personnel or their agents mailing such summons shall be considered conservators of the peace for the sole and limited purpose of mailing such summons. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 19.2-76, a summons for a violation of this section may be executed by mailing by first-class mail a copy thereof to the address of the driver of a motor vehicle as shown on the records of the Department of Motor Vehicles. If the summoned person fails to appear on the date of return set out in the summons mailed pursuant to this section, the summons shall be executed in the manner set out in § 19.2-76.3.
J. No person shall be subject to both the provisions of this section and to prosecution under § 46.2-819 for actions arising out of the same transaction or occurrence.
(2004, c. 924; 2006, c. 859; 2007, cc. 78, 200.)Sections: Previous 46.2-815 46.2-816 46.2-817 46.2-818 46.2-819 46.2-819.1 46.2-819.2 46.2-819.3 46.2-819.4 46.2-820 46.2-821 46.2-822 46.2-823 46.2-824 46.2-825 Next
Last modified: April 16, 2009