EZ Pickins

At first I was against EZ Pass. I saw it as just a way to eliminate jobs. And while I couldn’t imagine the boredom of working the 11 to 7 shift in a turnpike booth, and could never see myself doing that, I knew it was someone’s livelihood. Someone’s bread and butter.
But you can’t stand in the way of progress, and eventually I, too, owned the little transponder that allows me to zip right through toll booths. I was particularly grateful for it the first time I took the exit for the concert venue Penn’s Peak and discovered EZ Pass was required. There were no toll booths. The future had arrived.
But now I see on the news that EZ Pass has not only made paying a turnpike toll easy, apparently, it has made NOT paying even easier. To the tune of $104,000,00.
Let’s say it together: One hundred and four million dollars!
How many motorists zipped right through with no regard for paying the toll? I’ll answer in round numbers: A LOT.
The state says it will track down these scofflaws. I hope so. But I cannot help but wonder what such efforts will cost.
I also did some quick long division and figured if a ticket taker in a tool booth made 50 thousand dollars a year, $104,000,000 would cover the salaries of 2,080 such employees. All making sure drivers paid their fair share.
Which makes me wonder was EZ Pass worth it?

Ed Ackerman