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updated: 1/17/2014 5:38 AM

Change in store for coin buckets on tollway

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  • It could be the end of an era for tollway coin buckets.

      It could be the end of an era for tollway coin buckets.
    Daily Herald File Photo

 
 

The Illinois tollway may kick the bucket.

Despite the prevalence of I-PASS technology, the tollway still operates 103 coin machines on ramps throughout its system. The trouble is -- the ubiquitous buckets are becoming antiques.

"They don't make them anymore," tollway business systems chief Shana Whitehead said Thursday at a Customer Service Committee meeting.

The agency intends to start looking for replacements this year with a more modern twist that could allow for cash and credit card use.

"We're still very early in the process," Executive Director Kristi Lafleur said. "The first step would be testing something out, seeing how the different technologies work and what different vendors are out there."

Another issue is security for consumers. "We have to look at making sure the right security systems are in place," Lafleur said.

With the current coin machines, "when they break we're able to fix them, we have extra spare parts. But we know three to four years from now, we might not be able to fix them and we can't order replacements," she said.

Officials also said Thursday they hope to hear from a state panel soon about revising the time to pay toll violation notices from 56 to 90 days. The tollway agreed to extend the payment period in 2013 but the change requires approval from the state's Joint Committee on Administrative Rules.

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