5/6 UPDATE: Gov. McAuliffe announced that monthly account maintenance fees will be eliminated as of July 1.
"We went a little bit ahead to respond to our constituents," he said.
McAuliffe also said he knows many Midtown and Downtown tunnel users are frustrated with Elizabeth River Crossings about billing issues.
"It’s outrageous. Get your act together and fix it. You’re being paid, do your job right."
VIRGINIA BEACH -- With the stroke of a pen Tuesday, the monthly maintenance fees for drivers with Virginia E-Z passes will be eliminated.
Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA) will sign Senate Bill 156 at 10 a.m. Tuesday at a ceremony in Virginia Beach.
The bill says "No later than September 1, 2014, the Department of Transportation shall develop and implement a plan to eliminate the maintenance fees associated with electronic toll collection transponders."
It also encourages Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne to examine what can be done to improve selling/distribution of E-Z pass transponders. More on EZ pass marketing
According to General Assembly records, eliminating the 50-cents-a-month or $1 fee for E-ZPass Flex transponder owners.
The fee will require "alternative revenue source(s) to make up for the lost income. Options under consideration by VDOT include increased fees to toll facility operators and/or fees for having an inactive account. More here.
In January, the Commonwealth Transportation Board approved the reduction in the cost tolls at the Downtown and Midtown tunnels. For 2014, drivers with E-Z pass in off-peak hours pay $.75 and $1.00 during peak hours. For 2015, the price rises by $.25. In 2016, the price will increase another quarter. Then, on January 1, 2017, tolls are set to increase to the original planned levels of $1.59 off-peak each way and $1.84 during peak hours.
Gov. McAuliffe will be in Hampton Roads three days this week.
Monday, May 5:
-speaks at the kickoff event for the National Travel and Tourism Week at the Sheraton Virginia Beach Oceanfront at 12:15 p.m.
Tuesday, May 6:
-signs bill to eliminate the monthly E-Z pass maintenance fee at the Transportation Operations Center in Virginia Beach at 10 a.m.
-speaks the General Council of Pastors and Elders Conference, 2014 Church of God in Christ, Inc., at the Renaissance Portsmouth Hotel and Waterfront Conference Center at 12:15 p.m.
Thursday, May 8:
-remarks at the 94th Annual Maritime Banquet at the Norfolk Marriott Waterside Hotel at 7 p.m.