Grace Period: Illinois To Extend I-Pass Expiration Dates
I'll confess to somewhat of a love/hate relationship with the Illinois I-Pass. The love part of it is due to the ease of use when you're out on the tollway. Stick it on your dashboard or window, just keep moving, and the tolls will take care of themselves.
The hate part is rooted in the promises from the past that Illinois' tollways would be toll-free at some point (we hit that point years ago, we're still paying tolls, and we always will be), but that point never seems to come.
Does Anyone But Me Remember Hearing "Toll Free In '73" Way Back When?
That was a fairly popular phrase a few decades back here in Illinois. What it meant was, according to ABC7Chicago.com, is that Illinois' taxpayers had been promised that
their original 187 miles of tollways would be paid off and the roads would be turned into freeways. But, by then, state politicians had realized that with the tollways went jobs, contracts and clout.
I know, right? How out of character for Illinois politicians to think only about contracts and clout (and jobs they can throw to their supporters), rather than the financial well-being of their constituents. I'm shocked, I tell you, shocked.
Times Change, Promises Are Broken, And Things Cost A Lot More
Back when Illinois' tollways opened nearly 60 years ago, it would cost you 25 cents at the toll plazas, and the exits would set you back a whole dime. Needless to point out, it'll cost you substantially more now, even if you're rocking an I-Pass (no matter where you go).
Here's What You Need To Know About The I-Pass Grace Period
According to information from the Illinois Tollway:
- Illinois drivers with an expired or expiring I-Pass will get a two-year extension of their device's expiration date.
- Expiration dates that occur between 2020 and 2026 will be extended by two years.
- Illinois drivers will get detailed instructions via mail on the procedure for replacing their devices.
- Illinois drivers who don’t frequently use the Tollway can participate in the “Pay-by-Plate” program, which allows a grace period of 14 days to pay for missed tolls.