Rep. Kionne McGhee, D-Miami, and the Florida House Democrats will demand that Gov. Rick Scott address the statewide problems with the SunPass tolling system at a press conference in Miami on Wednesday.
McGhee’s demands are for the state to suspend all SunPass toll collections until the system is fixed and to appoint an independent auditing committee to investigate FDOT’s “mishandling of the SunPass electronic tolling system upgrade.”
“We call it Tollgate,” McGhee said.
Other state representatives that will be present include Barbara Watson, D-Miami, Joe Geller, D-Hollywood, Robert Asencio, D-Miami, Roy Hardemon, D-Miami, and Anika Omphroy, D-Lauderdale Lakes and Sen. Annette Taddeo, D-Miami, said Marisol Samayoa, the Florida House Democrat spokeswoman.
“(The contract) failed miserably,” Samayoa said. “(Conduent is) still being paid for a service they didn’t deliver, so that means Florida customers and visitors are paying for a service they’re not getting, a service they were promised.”
The press conference is scheduled for Wednesday at 10 a.m. at the FDOT District 6 Regional Office in Miami. McGhee hopes to speak with regional FDOT officials afterward, Samayoa said.
Florida House Democratic leader Rep. Janet Cruz, D-Tampa, sent a similar demand to Scott last week and said she hasn’t received a response.
“I applaud my fellow members in South Florida for demanding more action since my requests fell on deaf ears,” Cruz said. “The taxpayers want some accountability on this issue. They want answers.”
Many SunPass users have had difficulty using the customer service website, call line and app since the tolling system malfunctioned during an update in early June and haven’t seen accurate charges posted to their accounts. Last week the state said it would stop paying the SunPass contractor Conduent State & Local Solutions until the company fixed the issues, but the state paid $265,000 to Conduent the next day.