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Toll authorities have spent two decades refining issues such as billing rental car drivers and collecting from people who ignore bills, especially across state lines, with mixed success, Samuel said, but the benefits far outweigh complications.
“It’s pretty clear that it is a more economical way of collecting tolls . . . than paying people to sit in a tollbooth,” said Samuel, likening toll collectors to elevator operators. “It’s just one of those jobs that’s not really needed anymore.”
Massachusetts once had more than 500 collectors employed by three agencies. With the 2009 merger that created the state Department of Transportation, existing employees kept their hourly rates but new hires started at $15.55 an hour, said spokeswoman Cyndi Roy.
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